Mr Grealis is taking the opportunity to pursue other developments and business interests and will continue to act as Chief Executive for the immediate period whilst the Airport pursues a recruitment drive to seek his replacement. As a valued member of the Airport’s management team, Robert’s expertise and advisory services will be retained by the Airport in 2009 to aid the transition process in the Airport’s management. Mr Grealis joined the Airport in 2004 and served in the role of Director of Finance and Operations up until he was appointed Chief Executive in July 2007.
In accepting Mr Grealis’ decision, Airport Chairman, Liam Scollan said: “Since Robert joined the company in 2004, he has given unswerving service. I regard him as one of the most able managers I have ever encountered. Whilst his professional background is in accountancy, he applied his broad management experience to running the Airport and all that involves in terms of operations, infrastructure, route network development and people management. His positive attitude to, and management of, people was a key mark of his tenure. Very importantly, as a close colleague, I have immensely enjoyed working with him. On a professional and personal level I will be sad to see him depart, although I know that he has new ambitions and in these I wish him every success. The Airport’s achievements over the last number of years stand testament to Robert’s success during his time here.”
Mr Sean Noone, MD, Selc Ireland, and Board Member, Ireland West Airport Knock comments: “On behalf of the Board of Ireland West Airport Knock, I wish to add our sincerest best wishes to Robert in his future ventures. Robert has brought superb business and financial management expertise to the Airport and he played a key role in securing and delivering significant government and other stakeholder investments to the Airport. His personable, friendly and committed style of management has been a key asset to us in delivering necessary changes and we are most grateful for his dedication to the Airport, as well as to the Airport’s staff, over the years.”
Robert Grealis, CEO said: “Whilst it was a difficult decision for me to make, I am honoured to have been able to play a key role in the growth and success which the Airport has enjoyed over the past few years. It has been heartening for me to see significant projects and developments come to fruition under my directorship including growing the routes and airlines serving the Airport, the advancements in financial management and business efficiencies that have been achieved and in particular the successful application and approval of the Government’s investment of €27.1 million towards the Airport’s development, which will this year see the opening of our new terminal and the implementation of CAT II Instrumentation Landing Systems. I have thoroughly enjoyed serving the Airport and in particular working with the Board, management team and staff who have been hugely supportive of me in achieving the goals and objectives that firmly place Ireland West Airport Knock on the map as Ireland’s fourth international airport and resulted in 2008 being a record year for passenger numbers and routes. I wish them all, and the Airport, continued success and growth into the future.”