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Robert Deluce inducted into aviation hall of fame

Porter Airlines boss joins father among Canada’s aviation greats
Bob Deluce - president (2)
Robert Deluce

Porter Airlines president-CEO Robert Deluce has been inducted into Canada’s Aviation Hall of Fame.

The induction ceremony was held in Vancouver, June 15. He joins his late father, aviation pioneer Stan Deluce, who was inducted in 2007.

Deluce has been engaged in the aviation industry all of his life since he began working for the family business, White River Air Services, as a teenager in the 1960s.

Over the years, his career has taken him through various positions at NorOntair, Austin Airways, Air Creebec, Air Manitoba, Air Alliance and Canada 3000.

In 2000, he began discussions which culminated in the launch of a new concept in regional air travel from the then Toronto Island Airport in October 2006 under the banner of Porter, using 20 new Bombardier Q400 aircraft. Porter has grown to become a real power in the heavily travelled eastern Canada area and has expanded into U.S. destinations.

A former minister of transport credits Bob Deluce with saving the Island Airport, now named Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport, from ultimate failure.

“Bob’s dedication to establishing Porter as a distinct and sustainable alternative for travellers required a strong vision and determination,” said Don Carty, Porter’s chairman of the Board.

“I’ve known Bob for many years. He is an incredibly skilled business person and has a unique ability to relate to people of all backgrounds and experiences. His contribution to Canada’s aviation system is immense and his induction well earned.”

“My induction is a tremendous honour,” said Deluce. “It represents many people, places and companies that I’ve been privileged to associate with. Starting with my parents, eight siblings and countless mentors, colleagues and friends, I’m immensely grateful for the support that has been provided to me." 

Joining Deluce in the hall are: James Erroll Boyd, First World War pilot and co-founder of the Air Scouts of Canada; Daniel A. Sitnam, founder of Helijet International Inc. and Pacific Heliport Services and Rogers Eben Smith, NASA and NRC test pilot and RCAF pilot. The Royal Canadian Air Force “Golden Hawks” aerobatic team received the Belt of Orion Award for Excellence.