2018 Airport Business Top 40 Under 40: Gaël Le Bris, C.M., Engineer

Oct. 1, 2018

Gaël Le Bris, C.M., Engineer
Senior Aviation Planner, Technical Principal
Age: 31

  • Alma Mater: Florida Institute of Technology (USA); Ecole Nationale de l’Aviation Civile (France)
  • Favorite Aircraft: Lockheed Super Constellation
  • Favorite Book: Title, author: Corto Maltes by Hugo Pratt, which is more of a “visual novel” than a comic book.
  • Favorite TV Show: Star Trek (original series). Nothing can stop humanity – except ourselves.
  • Favorite Movie: Apollo 13… in our job, failure is not an option!
  • Favorite Hobbies: Enjoy spending time with my wife: Learning. Traveling. Attending Classical Music Concerts. Cycling.

Gaël Le Bris has been a consultant in the U.S. since 2017. He was previously the airside development manager at Paris-Charles de Gaulle International Airport (CDG). While he is now working primarily on airport projects in the United States, he is still collaborating with airports in Europe and beyond.

At Paris-CDG, he was part of several technical workgroups and rulemaking tasks, discussing how to improve standards and industry practices. His action contributed to positive changes to the technical requirements on airports in Europe,  easing certification and design of new infrastructure for the benefit of safety and capacity.

Le Bris also managed complex infrastructure projects and provided technical leadership as a lead engineer while being entrusted with operational duties.

“What a unique opportunity for a young aviation professional. I had tough moments, but I was rewarded with great professional adventures too,” he said. “In aviation, you meet with a lot of great people from all origins and profiles.”

Le Bris is a member of Eurocontrol’s EAPPRI, and of Airport Consultants Council (ACC) and the Transportation Research Board (TRB) in the U.S. He is invited to share at professional conferences such as the TRB Annual Meeting. He has participated in the preparation of guidebooks of reference such as EAPPRI V3 and ACI’s handbook on managing operations during construction. He is also a member of the Infrastructure Workgroup of The French-Speaking Airports (Les Aéroports Francophones).

“We talk about the emerging modes of transportation not only on the landside but on the airside too”, he said. “Uber and Lyft already changed mobility and the way we connect to the airport. Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) and Urban Air Mobility (UAM) vehicles can be the next game-changers. We should not underestimate the potential impact of these new players on air transportation.”

When Le Bris joined Les Aéroports Francophones, he used his experience during major construction projects he managed to coordinate the preparation of a guidebook of best practices that has been adopted by airports and recognized by aviation authorities all around the world.

"As far as I remember, I have always been fascinated with aviation. But among all the jobs bringing me close to aircraft, I decided to work for the airport industry when I saw the diversity and the dynamism it offers," he said. "You are constantly pushed out of your comfort zone, facing complex problems requiring skills in civil and aviation engineering, operations, economics and policies.

"Working in aviation is also about collaboration. Because failure is not an option – it would mean endangering life and putting high-value assets at risk – we must work together to succeed."

He is currently managing a research project on how to evaluate jet blast hazard on airport operations and infrastructure. There is still no standard to date on this matter and aircraft manufacturers publish very little about this.

Le Bris has also taught courses at the ENAC university in Toulouse, France. He mentors students for their academic projects and for master’s thesis.