From left to right, Bettina Mahieu (AVL Board of Directors), Susan IATA, (AVL International Women’s Day Team BLONG Award Winner) and Joanne Bani (AVL Executive Management).

Airports Vanuatu Ltd (AVL) yesterday recognized the important role women play in its organization through the awarding of the first AVL International Women’s Day Team BLONG Award.

The first AVL International Women’s Day Team BLONG Award goes to Susan Iata

AVL is pleased to announce the awarding of the inaugural AVL International Women’s Day Team BLONG Award to Susan Iata.

The award has been instigated to recognize the valuable contribution women make to AVL’s business at all levels, from people in their first job right up to the Board and Executive Management Team. Over a quarter of the AVL workforce is female (26%). AVL recognizes that a diverse workforce which reflects our population is a strong workforce, ensuring all views are represented.

In launching the Team BLONG Award, AVL staff were asked to nominate a colleague they admired, who made a significant contribution either to their team, through mentoring or leadership or went above and beyond in working to support the broader community. The person nominated should, through her actions, demonstrate AVL’s core values of BLONG:

-Be fair – demonstrating integrity

-Lead as one – demonstrating teamwork and unity

-Own it – demonstrating accountability

-Never give up – demonstrating perseverance, diligence and discipline

-Give respect – demonstrating respect at all times in how you deal with everyone in your life

Susan has been recognised by her colleagues because she embodies AVL’s BLONG core values so well. She conducts her role in housekeeping diligently and has the respect of all her colleagues for her professionalism and commitment to her role. She works independently, without supervision and shows ownership and initiative in proactively identifying and taking on tasks.

AVL award winner recognized for her contribution

Jason Rakau, CEO of AVL commented, “Today’s award recognizes Susan as a quiet achiever. It is her commitment to the role day in, day out which we admire. The consistency she brings to her team and the example she gives to her colleagues are exactly the qualities many of our operational roles require. The safe and compliant operation of an airport relies on a disciplined and diligent approach by a whole team of people. In making this award to Susan, we acknowledge all AVL’s team, both female and male. Susan exemplifies the unity and teamwork I am so proud of, across our whole AVL Family. We never give up”.

Bettina Mahieu, AVL Board Member and General Manager of the Grand Hotel and Casino added, “On behalf of AVL’s Board, I would like to congratulate Susan. The Board recognizes and acknowledges the commitment of all women in the AVL Team. I have been particularly impressed by Susan’s personal story and commitment, since she started working for AVL in 2010. After arriving in Port Vila from Tanna, Susan was initially unable to speak Bislama. She worked hard at her role and overcame challenges including learning Bislama. The Board has been impressed by the calibre of nominations made by AVL staff towards this award. Now the award has been instigated, we intend to grant this award every year and make it a key part of AVL’s company culture”.

Joanne Bani, General Manager of Human Resources for AVL said, “Susan is  a highly valued part of the AVL Team. She is based at Port Vila Airport and in our housekeeping team. She has worked for AVL for over 10 years and throughout that time has become a respected member of the team. She always has a smile for everyone. I congratulate Susan on being a great role model for all AVL staff”.