Ross reportedly lost the support of the majority of the union’s directors. He was midway through his four-year term in office and his tenure was dogged by a number of issues. His departure echoes that of previous president Laura Glading, who also left the post before her full term was up.
Bob Ross, the president of the Association of Professional Flight Attendants (APFA), stood down from office on Friday, Forbes reports. Ross was midway through a four-year term of office when he was reportedly ousted after having lost the majority support of the organization’s 14 directors. His departure echoes that of previous president, Laura Glading, who was forced to retire in October 2015 after receiving opposition from board members.
Elected in January 2016, Ross’ short tenure has been marked by multiple problems, including concerns over voter security in the 2016 election as well as software issues that dogged the merger between American Airlines and US Airways.
The amalgamation between these two carriers has proved to be Ross’ undoing and the outlet reports that he, “…lost the support of the board, which came to feel he could not adequately represent flight attendants, particularly given the split between legacy American and legacy US Airways.”
In his letter of resignation, Ross was quoted as saying, “In order for the transition to be as smooth as possible, I’ve decided to step aside so as not to be a distraction to the forthcoming election. My goal has always been to put flight attendants first before union politics and by my stepping down, I believe I’ve accomplished that.”
Ross also used his resignation to voice support for the APFA as a standalone body. While there has been some discussion of a merger between the APFA and the Association of Flight Attendants (AFA) – which represents flight attendants across 20 different carriers – Ross was staunch in his views on the subject, saying, “It is my firm belief that a strong independent union, such as APFA, is in the best interest for the flight attendants at American Airlines.”
It has been announced that Nena Martin, the APFA’s incumbent vice president, will serve as the organization’s interim president.