Overair has announced that Dr Valerie Man­ning will join the com­pa­ny as chief com­mer­cial offi­cer (CCO) from her cur­rent role as senior vice pres­i­dent of train­ing and flight oper­a­tion ser­vices at Air­bus.

Man­ning will help guide Overair’s com­mer­cial and oper­a­tional launch as it pre­pares to fly its all-elec­tric pro­to­type in the sec­ond half of 2023, lead­ing its com­mer­cial strat­e­gy, busi­ness devel­op­ment, mar­ket­ing, sales, sup­port, and in-ser­vice oper­a­tions infra­struc­ture.

Overair CEO Ben Tign­er said: “Hav­ing known Valerie for years, I have a deep appre­ci­a­tion for her capa­bil­i­ties and char­ac­ter, and I know that her addi­tion will be a game chang­er for us, accel­er­at­ing our path toward com­mer­cial­i­sa­tion.

“Valerie’s unique com­bi­na­tion of cor­po­rate, mil­i­tary, and avi­a­tion expe­ri­ence, on top of her world-class tech­ni­cal capa­bil­i­ties, will help us con­vert Overair’s tech­nol­o­gy and prod­uct advan­tages into real-world val­ue for com­mu­ni­ties and Overair’s stake­hold­ers.

“As an accom­plished pilot, Valerie also under­stands the ben­e­fits eVTOL will bring to urban areas, and she will be key to unlock­ing our suc­cess.”

Pri­or to join­ing Overair, Dr. Man­ning served as a senior exec­u­tive at Air­bus, based in Toulouse, France, where she has led world­wide train­ing and flight oper­a­tions ser­vices, cus­tomer sup­port and air­craft mod­i­fi­ca­tion ser­vices.

Through­out her Air­bus career, she has worked with the company’s cus­tomers, part­ners, and sup­pli­ers world­wide on a wide range of com­mer­cial and oper­a­tional top­ics relat­ed to their air­craft and asso­ci­at­ed ser­vices.

A retired Unit­ed States Air Force Offi­cer, she holds a doc­tor­al degree in aero­nau­tics and astro­nau­tics from Stan­ford Uni­ver­si­ty. She is also a Euro­pean Avi­a­tion Safe­ty Agency (EASA) flight instruc­tor and jet-rat­ed com­mer­cial pilot.

She com­ment­ed: “I’m so excit­ed to join the Overair team and to address the chal­lenge of build­ing the com­pa­ny and bring­ing its busi­ness ambi­tions to fruition.

“I chose Overair due to its state-of-the-art tech­nol­o­gy, inno­v­a­tive and inclu­sive spir­it, and deep com­mit­ment to advanc­ing sus­tain­able avi­a­tion through eVTOL. I am moti­vat­ed by the idea of bring­ing my expe­ri­ence to a new indus­try sec­tor, so when this fan­tas­tic oppor­tu­ni­ty pre­sent­ed itself, I accept­ed with plea­sure.”

Last month, Overair announced it would utilise Toray Com­pos­ite Mate­ri­als America’s advanced pre-impreg­nat­ed (prepreg) sys­tem in its But­ter­fly pro­to­type low-noise, zero-emis­sion eVTOL air­craft for sus­tain­able aer­i­al rideshar­ing in dense­ly pop­u­lat­ed cities.

In June, Overair announced an invest­ment of $145 mil­lion from Han­wha Sys­tems and Han­wha Aero­space to fly its But­ter­fly all-elec­tric exper­i­men­tal pro­to­type in the sec­ond half of 2023.