Provo Air Center’s CEO Deborah Aharon has been awarded the annual Pegasus Sapphire Award for Outstanding Woman in Aviation, making her the first Caribbean-based recipient. Thd of the accolade followed shortly after the Turks and Caicos based FBO secured the top position in the Aviation International News (AIN) FBO Survey ranking of best Caribbean FBOs for the second year in a row.
The award was presented at the Sonesta Majo Beach Resort in St. Maarten during the recently concluded CaribAvia Aviation Conference. Other award winners were Adam Twidell of PrivateFly for Outstanding Online Networker, the Bahamas Islands for Outstanding Country Promotion, and Graham Stephenson for Outstanding Lifetime Achievement. Cdr. Bud Slaebbert, conference organizer, presented the awards at the annual meetup hosted by Princess Juliana International Airport in St. Maarten.
While accepting the award, Aharon told a story about her early days in the company when, during a company meeting in the male-dominated organization, one manager stopped her from speaking mid-sentence, saying that she could not express an opinion because she was a woman and would therefore know nothing about aviation. Holding up the heavy sapphire blue crystal award, Aharon joked that she now had “incontrovertible proof” that she knew what she was talking about.
A native of Philadelphia, with a background in travel and meeting planning, Aharon originally joined the company’s airline division, now called interCaribbean Airways, in 1999 to help it meet the needs of the American tourism market. In 2001, she helped the company found the first FBO in the Turks and Caicos and took primary responsibility for expanding and upgrading the business. Under her stewardship, Provo Air Center has been named Best Caribbean FBO in the AIN annual FBO survey for the past two years.
Speaking about the award, Aharon said “as managers, we seek recognition for our companies, but not, if we’re good leaders, for ourselves. We understand it’s not really about us. It’s about the team pulling together. But when our efforts to lead are noticed and rewarded by our peers, that’s truly the best feeling in the world.”
The Sapphire Pegasus Awards are a unique series of International Business Aviation Awards given for outstanding performance by companies or individuals in the business aviation sector. The entries are selected and judged by an Advisory Board that represents business aviation professionals from different sectors of the industry. In Europe, the professional business aviation organizations European Business Aviation Association (EBAA), The Air Charter Association (BACA), Russian United Business Aviation Association (RUBAA), Central Europe Private Aviation (CEPA) and African Business Aviation Association (AFBAA) are supporting partners of the event.
The attractive Sapphire Pegasus Award is handcrafted of Bohemian crystal by the glass masters of the famous Moser Glassworks in Karlovy Vary, Czech Republic.
Provo Air Center is a Fixed-base Operation (FBO) located at Providenciales International Airport in the Turks and Caicos. The first FBO established in the islands, Provo Air Center features the world’s first drive-thru customs hall, a children’s lounge, dog park and is the only FBO in the area with a hard stand able to handle an aircraft up to the B777 category. The FBO is a member of the Air Elite Network of Diamond Service Locations and the closest facility to Amanyara, Parrot Cay, Beaches and the luxury shops and resorts of Grace Bay.