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CATCA 2019 Award of Merit Recipient

February 13, 2020

At the January Executive Board meeting, the EB reviewed nominations for the prestigious Award of Merit. The Award is given to acknowledge a member who has displayed an unselfish dedication to the Association, its goals, and to their fellow members. After receiving a nomination, the EB agreed that retired member Richard (Rick) Smith be presented with the 2019 Award of Merit in recognition of his years of service to the membership.

Rick worked as an Air Traffic Controller in Canada for 30 years, in Dubai for 14 years, and in the UK as a consultant for two years. His Canadian branches included:

  • Yellowknife Tower
  • Edmonton Tower
  • Edmonton ACC
  • Calgary Tower
  • Calgary Terminal Supervisor
  • Toronto Terminal Supervisor/Instructor

Highlights of Rick’s career with CATCA:

  • Elected to first term 1980
  • Served 7.5 terms as Regional Director and 1.5 years as Secretary-Treasurer
  • CATCA representative on the Board of Canadian Science and Technology Growth Fund
  • Served on several contract committees and bargaining teams
  • ATC representative on Master Evaluation Committee of the “Equal Pay for Work of Equal Value” study
  • Co-designer of 1980 CATCA classification system
  • ATC representative on the CATCA/NAV Canada 1997 classification study
  • ATC Privatisation Committee

Rick has also been instrumental in several CATCA initiatives, including:

  • Advanced visits to the Soviet Union to discuss exchange visits with controllers
  • Co-sponsor of the Russian/Western Region exchange program
  • Co-organizer of the 1991 CATCA convention in Calgary
  • Organized ATC involvement in Calgary air show
  • Developed dual qualification program for Calgary tower/terminal

As Rick is currently working overseas, he will be formally presented with the Award of Merit at convention 2022 in Quebec City. Following the CATCA tradition for Award of Merit winners, Rick will attend convention as our guest and will be recognized in front of the membership.

On behalf of the Executive Board, congratulations Rick!


Peter Duffey                                  Doug Best
President                                       Executive Vice President


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