Fly boy grounds himself

Gary Collins will no longer be flying the friendly skies with Harmony Airways. Earlier today, the company announced the former provincial finance minister had resigned as its president. In an interview with Public Eye, Mr. Collins explained he made the decision because there's "something else that I'm looking at" - specifically two other career opportunities. "And hopefully you'll hear from me in the not-to distance future." And what opportunities is he considering, you may wonder? "I'm not in a position to make an announcement or commitment at this point," stated Mr. Collins. Although he did say it wouldn't involve the Liquour Stores Income Fund or the British Columbia government. When ask whether he would consider a return to politics, Mr. Collins responded, "Maybe sometime within the next millenium. But I'm still in detox. I'm not there yet. I'd never rule it out. But it's certainly not something on this side of the horizon." Mr. Collins will continue to work with Harmony as a member of it's advisory board. The following is a complete copy of the aforementioned announcement.

Kirk Henderson Named Interim President at Harmony Airways
Former Jim Pattison Group Vice-Chair Replaces Gary Collins

Richmond, BC (December 1, 2006): Harmony Airways Chairman and owner Dr David T.K. Ho today announced that Kirk Henderson, former Vice-Chairman of the Jim Pattison Group, has been named interim President following the resignation of Gary Collins who had been with the Vancouver-based airline for two years.

"Gary brought a tremendous profile and professionalism to our airline, and his organizational skills allowed us to re-structure and grow our business, particularly in the Hawaii market where Harmony has become a leader among Canadian carriers," said Dr Ho. "As we carry out our search for a new President, I'm very pleased that Kirk Henderson is available to join us and help prepare us for future growth. Kirk's business experience, and in particular his years with the Jim Pattison Group, will provide the leadership that's needed during this interim period."

Collins thanked Ho and the entire Harmony team for the opportunity to help build a British Columbia success story.

"I'm really proud of what our team accomplished over the past couple of years," said Collins. "We took a fledgling local airline and made it a household name with a great reputation for customer service. In the process, we made Harmony's name synonymous with Hawaii and other sunshine destinations."

Dr Ho said that while the airline has long-term plans to fly to China, the core of its current business continues to be vacation destinations, particularly Maui, Honolulu and Las Vegas.

"Like our entire team, I'm committed to the continued success of Harmony, and I'm particularly pleased that Gary will stay on with us as a member of our board of advisors," added Dr Ho.

The other members of the Harmony Airways board of advisors are Steve Bellringer, William (Bill) Dalton, William (Bill) Cohen, Anthony von Mandl, John Reynolds, Greg McDougall, David Chu, Lyall Knott, Robert (Bob) Weins, and Doug Black.

"I'm very pleased to join the Harmony team, and like Dr Ho, I'm excited about preparing the airline for future growth in the years ahead," added Henderson. "The potential is tremendous and the Harmony brand has become a popular choice for travelers, particularly when it comes to the discerning leisure travel market."

Harmony Airways flies year-round, non-stop service to Hawaii from Vancouver and Calgary. Other year-round service from Vancouver includes Las Vegas and Toronto. Seasonal services include flights to Hawaii from Kelowna, Edmonton, and Victoria, as well as Palm Springs and San Francisco from Vancouver. Hotels, car rentals, and vacation packages are offered through Harmony Vacations.

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Media contacts:
Norman Stowe
Gary Collins

13 Comments

Was Collins ever anything more than a poster boy for Harmony?

This is certainly going to be interesting, to see what this new career opportunity turns out to be for Gary.

Why was it, again, that he quit as Minister of Finance?

Federal seat opening for him?

I think a federal seat on the horizon, and ol' Gary is coming in for a landing.

The runway has been cleared for him to land, refuel and when the next election comes in the Spring..

Gary will be taking off like a C-130 on a mission.

Look to Christy Clark to run some part of his campaign. To be his navigator.

There may be no nomination contest as Gary could very much be one of those "star" candidates that gets appointed.

Collins is a federal Liberal.


Surely you jest Grit Guy. Do you mean the Liberals will continue to appoint and suffer the slings and arrows of all who remember what "star" appointee David Emerson delivered.

Besides, Collins, despite his quick change acts, still has a bit of egg, er..stuff hanging off of him from his days of being very close to the basi crew.

It's like he took a fast plane (Harmony) out of town, but forgot to collect all his baggage, which is still locked up on a BC Rail train now stuck on a siding awaiting a little matter called a criminal court case.

"Surely you jest Grit Guy. Do you mean the Liberals will continue to appoint and suffer the slings and arrows of all who remember what "star" appointee David Emerson delivered."

They sure will. They did not remove the provision of the leader to be able to appoint candidates.

There probably won't be as many appointments as there were before but they will happen.

Be there when it happens.

Interesting that Kirk Henderson should land over at David Ho's. I thought as Vice-Chair of Jimmy's corner of the world that he would retire from there.

Whatever it is that you Libranos are frothing over, remember this: the court case does not involve Collins and if it did he surely wouldn't leave HArmony to do anything political knowing he could be gripped by any scandal. Not since Jean Creature left the PMO have you had any people who were that dumb.

Nice to see the moron platoon trot out Minister Emerson for yet another futile kick.

If think some of you breeding farts, er, sorry, bleeding hearts, should think about how you're going to sell this man Dion to Canadians as being any less dangerous than Harpman. The Kyoto nonsense and misinformation was vomitous, not to mention the complete lack of intellectual honesty in selling the doomsday scenario (thanks Scotty Brison, you're such a doll!)

What a joke. If the Liberals had a collective brain that made sense they would have chosen Kennedy. Balanced, sensible and honest as the day is long...shit, what am I thinking, since when do those traits resonate in the Libranos???

Gary Collins to run federally? Really? Won't that conflict with Christie Clark's ambition to run federally? I mean really, there are only so many seats in Vancouver, and with Hedy unwilling to release Vancouver Centre and Emerson having a presumed lock on Vancouver Quadra, Dosanjh on Vancouver South, the only place left for either Christy or Collins is Vancouver Quadra.

Unless, of course, Christy plans to move back to Port Moody to take on James Moore.

My apologies, in my previous post I meant to say that Clark and Collins would both be looking at Vancouver Kingsway, not Vancouver Quadra. And yes, the first thing they would have to do would be to persuade the present Liberal Candidate there to step aside one more time for the good of the party, ... for the good of the country, of course.

Don't look for Collins to do anything federally. He has 2 young children and the last thing he wants to do is spend his time on a plane back and forth to Ottawa.

Oh, and on the Dion stuff. Dion may not be the most electrifying cat, but he is honest as the day is long. He did the tough sledding on the Clarity Act and while reviled by Quebec nationalists, probably has a fair amount of respect from federalists both inside and out of Quebec.

Personally, I look for another minority gov't (don't know who wins, though) and the knives firmly placed in Mr. Harper's back as unable to take the team over the top.

Courtesy of the media who are more than livid with Buckler and the rest of the PMO.

Gee AG (Tacky) Tsakumis, it seems you are becoming rather fond of Emerson.

Was it his ability to stick a knife in the back of his constituents while whining that his family is being picked on that caught your imagination?

And will you be helping the guy who gave away $1 Billion to US lumber interests campaign in Vancouver Kingsway or is that just a bit too far east of Main for your liking?
Actually, to be lumped among the "moron platoon" by the likes of you is a compliment, but I certainly do take no little insult from your blathering that I might just be a "Liberal."

The day I start to pine for the likes of Gary Collins or any other "Liberal" types is the day I'll join the slugs who helped get Sam Sullivan into city hall.

Ah... Kingsway has a Liberal candidate Wendy Yuan.

Hedy is old and may well leave, Ujjal's faction lost, Owen is tired of the Ottawa games. Maybe not this time but maybe after next December's Liberal leadership race.

"Don't look for Collins to do anything federally. He has 2 young children and the last thing he wants to do is spend his time on a plane back and forth to Ottawa."

Excuse me for asking, ... but weren't we once told that the reason Christy Clark could no longer serve in Victoria was the fact that she had a pre-school age child? Wasn't that just a few months before she decided to run for Mayor?

If Collins has federal ambitions, now is an obvious time to be thinking about them, for the next few weeks at least till the polls gravitate back to normalcy.

"Oh, and on the Dion stuff. Dion may not be the most electrifying cat, but he is honest as the day is long."

Honest Stephane. Kind of like Honest John (Diefenbaker), or Honest Abe. Or Honest John Buchanan, the one time Nova Scotia Premier. An image-makers made-up phoney baloney slogan acting as a factoid for the easily impressed section of the electorate.

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