Airbus Engineer Honoured with Prestigious New Zealand Defence Award
20 October 2017
Wellington, 20 October 2017: Airbus maintenance support advisor, Steve Bennett, was officially recognised for his contribution to the New Zealand Defence Force, being named recipient of the 2017 Minister of Defence Awards of Excellence to Industry.
Mr. Bennett, the Operations Site Manager of Airbus Australia Pacific’s maintenance complex on the Royal New Zealand Air Force (RNZAF) Base Auckland, was the winning Special Awards finalist honoured by the New Zealand Defence Industry Advisory Council at an Awards presentation at the Westpac Stadium, Wellington, on October 11th.
The New Zealand Defence Force cited Mr Bennett’s long term commitment to the Air Force as a service member, consultant and contractor, noting that he is a valuable asset to both his employer and the RNZAF. His significant wealth of technical and organisational knowledge coupled with his pragmatic approach to problem solving has contributed to the long and successful relationship between the RNZAF and Airbus, and the achievement of countless shared objectives.
Mr Bennett has dedicated almost his entire working life to aerospace engineering, leaving school to join the RNZAF as an Aircraft Engineer. During the ensuing 27 years he was involved at all levels of maintenance and engineering support of military aircraft and engines. After a stint with commercial aviation in Australia he returned to New Zealand and worked in the mining and manufacturing industries.
In 2011 Mr. Bennett moved to Safe Air at Auckland where he was responsible for support to the RNZAF. Safe Air was acquired by Airbus in 2015 and Mr. Bennett now manages 14 embedded staff at the Auckland complex and is the prime interface between Airbus and the RNZAF on all transactional maintenance activities at the base.
Naming Mr. Bennett the 2017 winner of the Minister of Defence Awards of Excellence, the Defence Industry Advisory Council said the Awards acknowledged industry’s valuable contribution to Defence and enabled nominees and finalists to promote their professional skills to their industry customers.
Acknowledging the great achievement of the award, Tony Fraser, Managing Director of Airbus in Australia Pacific said “Airbus is most appreciative of the New Zealand Minister for Defence Award recognising Steve Bennett’s contribution, and on behalf of all members of Airbus Australia Pacific, join in congratulating Steve. As Steve has demonstrated, we are very proud of our work supporting the New Zealand Defence Force.”
Airbus is a global leader in aeronautics, space and related services. In 2016, it generated revenues of € 67 billion and employed a workforce of around 134,000. Airbus offers the most comprehensive range of passenger airliners from 100 to more than 600 seats. Airbus is also a European leader providing tanker, combat, transport and mission aircraft, and is one of the world’s leading space companies. In helicopters, Airbus provides the most efficient civil and military rotorcraft solutions worldwide.