With more than 20 years of experience in the commercial airline industry, along with a tenured history as Compass’ former Chief Operating Officer, we’re pleased to welcome Brian Randow back to the Compass team. Read our Q&A with Brian to learn what inspired him to pursue aviation and why he accepted Compass’ COO role, again.
What originally inspired you to pursue a career in aviation?
I grew up around airplanes and aviation from a young age. My father was an Air Traffic Controller in the Air Force and his best friend was a Charter Pilot that owned many airplanes. Growing up around airplanes sparked a curiosity in me for all things mechanical, which made aviation a natural fit for me.
Can you describe your educational background and work history?
After receiving my Bachelor of Arts degree in Aviation Studies and Minor in Business Administration from Metropolitan State University, I began my career working as bag runner for Mesaba Airlines in 1996.
While working with Mesaba, I held positions in various roles which include Crew Scheduling, Crew Planning, Director of Crew Resources, Director of Systems Operational Control and Director of Labor Relations. I left Mesaba in 2007 to accept a position with Northwest Airlines (NWA) as Director of Flight Operations Training Resource Management.
I worked at NWA during their merger with Delta. While working at NWA/Delta, I was asked if I was interested in joining their subsidiary, Compass Airlines. The role was in Chantilly, Virginia, and I accepted the Director of SOC and Crew Resources position offered in 2009. During my tenure with Compass, I served as the COO from 2010 to 2015. In 2015, I left Compass and started working at Ameriflight as the President and CEO. Now, I’m thrilled to be back with the company that I served for many years and with the excellent teams that have become my extended family.
Whom do you most admire in aviation leadership?
In the airline industry, the leader I admire most is Richard Anderson. He is one of the most impressive leaders I’ve seen. As the leader for the merging of NWA and Delta, he pulled it off greatly in record’s time with little disruption to the airlines. The merge was very impressive. His direct, no fluff style of leadership was also very refreshing to me.
After returning from Northwest Airlines, what excites you the most about being back with the Compass team?
Compass was my home for many years and I’m excited to be back. Compass is a great airline and the employees are more like family than coworkers. We truly have some of the best employees I’ve ever worked with in all of my career. It is an excellent company to work for.
What do you enjoy doing outside of work?
I really enjoy spending time with my family. My oldest daughter Amanda and her husband Dan are cattle farmers in Southern Iowa. At the end of April, they had my first grandchild, a healthy baby girl named Kate Marie. My middle daughter Kori is a junior at the University of Minnesota Duluth. My youngest child Paul will start his senior year of high school this fall. Paul recently completed the rank of Eagle Scout, and dreams to fly.
Tell us more about your son Paul’s aviation aspirations?
Paul wants to become a professional pilot. He started taking flying lessons this past June. His goal is to receive his private pilot’s certificate and instrument rating before leaving for college. He’s still undecided on what college he wants to attend. I’m trying to convince him to attend the University of North Dakota or Ohio State University.
What would you tell pilots considering a career with Compass?
I would tell pilots that are interested in starting a career with Compass that the Embrarer-175 is a great aircraft to fly and that Compass is a fantastic company to work with. Working at Compass is a great opportunity to advance your career and an even better place to make your career home.
To learn more about Compass careers, visit compasairline.com.