WestJet names CFO interim chief executive as search for permanent replacement ongoing

CALGARY — WestJet Airlines Ltd. has named Harry Taylor its interim president and chief executive.

Taylor has been WestJet's chief financial officer since 2015. He will assume the interim CEO role between late November and mid-December 2021.

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Taylor will replace current WestJet chief executive Ed Sims, who announced in June his plans to retire at the end of this year. Sims has been CEO since May of 2017.

Jennifer Bue, WestJet’s current vice-president of finance planning and analysis, has been named interim CFO.

WestJet says Taylor played a key role in helping steer the airline through the COVID-19 pandemic. He was responsible for managing WestJet's liquidity at a time when little to no revenue was coming in.

Taylor also led WestJet's first U.S. bond issue and negotiated the purchase of the airline's new Boeing 787 Dreamliner and Boeing MAX aircraft.

In a news release, Taylor said there is still a great deal of work to be done as WestJet aims to rebuild post-pandemic.

"I look forward to leading our organization through this crucial phase of our recovery," Taylor said.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 15, 2021.

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