Vaughn welcomed Shelley LaRose-Arken, commissioner of aviation and transportation at Long Island MacArthur Airport on October 1. MacArthur Airport is a 1300 acres facility with 250-based aircraft and 35 businesses located on the airport. The airport is a Part 139-certificated airport that serves general aviation and several major air carriers accommodating 1.6M passengers annually. The airport generates $566M in direct and indirect economic activity.

With more than 30 years of experience in the aviation field, LaRose-Arken is a graduate of Florida Tech with a focus in aviation management and flight technology. She is a commercial instrument and multi-engine pilot and has worked among airports around the country.

As the Town of Islip’s, Commissioner of Aviation for Long Island MacArthur Airport and Bayport Aerodrome, La-Rose Arken is responsible for the development of a comprehensive air service program to increase passenger demand, raise customer awareness and has implemented a strategic mission for the airport and a sustainable financial plan.

This session of the virtual speaker series focused on the benefits and opportunities of careers in airports, the concept of how to operate an airport as a business and gave students insights into how to obtain a career in that field, the major power players in the industry and how the industry has adapted post pandemic.