David Edwards FRAeS
Chief Executive. Royal Aeronautical Society
Mr David Edwards FRAeS was appointed as Chief Executive of the
Royal Aeronautical Society in September 2021.
Having started learnt to fly aged 14, David read a Transport
Management degree at the University of Plymouth before entering
the business aviation industry in 1997 with Magec Aviation at
London Luton Airport. He moved to Gama Aviation in 1998 to work
in Flight Operations, joining a company of five aircraft and 40
people, rising to become Group General Manager and Managing
Director, Middle East and Asia, with a fleet of over 120 aircraft and
300 people when he left fifteen years later. During his time with
the company, he led a number of significant programmes, including Air Ambulance and Special
Missions work. The last five years of his time with the company were based in the United Arab
Emirates heading up the group’s expansion into the region and the development of the business in
the UAE, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and China.
In 2013 he joined Qatar Airways as Executive Vice President, responsible for the airline’s charter flying
and executive jet divisions, as well as the airline’s business jet maintenance facility and VVIP ground
handling. During his time with the airline, he led the $1.5Bn fleet purchase program of Gulfstream
G500 and G650ER aircraft, becoming the first commercial operator of the types worldwide.
In 2016 he returned to the UK to establish a consulting business with three former colleagues,
specialising in supporting businesses during periods of significant growth in the aviation and tech
industries. Alongside this, in 2018 he was appointed as Chief Executive of The Air Charter Association,
the global trade body representing the interests of companies in the air charter sector and led the
organisation through a period of significant change and development, and spearheaded the growth
of relationships with Government and Regulators around the globe, as well as growing links with other
He serves as a trustee for the aviation charity Fly2help, is a Freeman of the City of London and a
Liveryman of the Honourable Company of Air Pilots.
David has been a member of the Society since 1999 and a Fellow since 2010.
Wednesday 07 June
13:20 - 14:10 | Keynote Theatre