“I have such a connection to Pearson. I’m a first generation Canadian. Toronto Pearson was the gateway for me to move between Canada and my family in Egypt. I even got my first job here—I was fifteen, working part-time for an airline as an English-Arabic translator.
Today, I manage two important teams: the Airside Vehicle Operators Permit (AVOP) program and the Aviation Safety Management System (SMS). We bring people together for a common cause, safety.
The AVOP Program manages about 10,000 airside drivers, enforcing licensing requirements and the rules of the road, airside. The Aviation Safety Management System (SMS) department is an all-female team of safety experts that ensure compliance to the Canadian Aviation Regulations which governs the SMS . We identify hazards and make sure they’re mitigated to an acceptable level.
My introduction to aviation safety started with an airline and it came with challenges. I was a woman and a visible minority in a male dominated field. I had to work hard to forge my own path, but that showed me what I was capable of. It also taught me the importance of leading with empathy and designing programs for the people at the heart of them.
If you don’t see yourself reflected in your dream job, be confident in yourself. No matter what makes you diverse—as a new Canadian, a woman or a visible minority—be the person who believes in you the most. Use that to build strong relationships, create your own network of believers.”
- Hager, GTAA, Manager, Aviation SMS & AVOP Program