Dr. Friesen was appointed President & Chief Executive Officer of First Air in March 2013. In the two years prior to his appointment he led a successful new regional airline (Starbow) based in Accra, Ghana.
Previously, he was Chief Commercial Officer at Air Malta and Vice President of Finance & Strategy with Star Alliance in Frankfurt. From 1986 to 2000 he held various executive planning and commercial positions with Canadian Airlines in Vancouver. His academic background includes a PhD from the University of Waterloo and an MBA from IMD in Switzerland. He invented the first single engine hovercraft.