Bateman to retire as airport director

Barry Bateman will retire as the director of General Mitchell International Airport after holding the position for 31 years.

Bateman’s retirement will take effect April 18.

Milwaukee County Executive Chris Abele said, “In his 31 years as the airport director for Milwaukee County, Barry’s accomplishments are extraordinary and extensive. He has used his exceptional leadership skills, sound fiscal policies and excellent business relationships with the airlines to simultaneously increase air service and provide the airport infrastructure to handle the growth. During Barry’s tenure as airport director, the annual number of passengers at Mitchell International has increased from 3 million to more than 7 million (up 220 percent). Barry has overseen more than $500 million in capital improvements at the Airport, which has created a tremendous economic benefit for the entire southeastern Wisconsin region. In 2007, Barry received one of the American Association of Airport Executive’s highest honors, the Distinguished Service Award. In 2008, Barry was the recipient of the Public Policy Forum’s Norman N. Gill award. And in 2010, the Wisconsin Airport Management Association presented Barry with its Lifetime Service Award. Prior to Milwaukee’s Mitchell International Airport, Barry served in positions at Las Vegas McCarran International and Lexington Bluegrass Airports, with 41 total years in airport management. I know the community will join me in thanking Barry for skillfully piloting the airport through the many ups and downs of the aviation industry. His outstanding leadership, knowledge of the airport and aviation industry, and steady guidance will be greatly missed.”

Deputy airport director Terry Blue will take over as interim director upon Bateman’s retirement. Milwaukee County is immediately launching a national search to replace Bateman.

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