2023 Airport Business Top 40 Under 40: Rebecca Fiscus

Dec. 19, 2023
Rebecca Fiscus, Indianapolis Airport Authority Capital Program Manager

Rebecca Fiscus's career trajectory within the Indianapolis Airport Authority (IAA) has revolved around enhancing the sustainability and stability of this vital transportation hub.

Fiscus's exceptional capabilities have not gone unnoticed within the organization. Robert Thomson, Senior Director of Finance and Treasurer, describes her as "thorough, tenacious, brave in trying new things." She is acknowledged for her strategic thinking and her ability to unearth creative solutions that benefit the entire organization. Jarod Klaas, Senior Director of Planning and Development, lauds her adeptness at working across multiple departments and guiding teams through complex capital budgeting processes.

As Capital Programs Manager, Fiscus plays a pivotal role in safeguarding the airport's economic impact, ensuring compliance with federal grant regulations, and overseeing the annual compilation of the IAA's extensive $1.06 billion five-year capital program. Her proficiency in working with vast amounts of complex data to create meaningful reporting with informative charts and graphs has streamlined the decision-making process.

“I enjoy being part of an organization that is committed to creating public value for the residents of Central Indiana while delivering world class service and experiences,” Fiscus said. “It’s exciting to be part of an organization that makes environmental sustainability such a high priority and undertakes innovative approaches to reach our goals.”

Her leadership was instrumental in securing the largest-ever allocation of Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Airport Improvement Program (AIP) funding in 2021, amounting to nearly $83 million. Most of this grant funding supported a groundbreaking $190 million runway and taxiway reconstruction project, which featured the world's first FAA-approved use of carbon capture technology in pavement.

Fiscus's influence extends across various facets of the IAA. She played a crucial role in compiling essential information for the IAA's Official Bond Statements and led initiatives to convert a significant portion of the organization's debt to fixed-rate bonds. This strategic financial move not only funded substantial growth but also catalyzed a stormwater capacity enhancement project that facilitated the expansion of the FedEx hub in Indianapolis. Her diligence, analytical acumen, and problem-solving abilities were integral to the successful execution of these transactions.

Furthermore, her commitment to sustainability and community enhancement is evident in her leadership of the IAA's Land Use Initiative. This initiative focuses on returning airport land no longer needed for aviation to local tax rolls, thereby benefiting the community.

Fiscus also led efforts to secure over $100 million in additional funding for existing debt service by amending the Passenger Facility Charge (PFC) application. Her meticulous research and data analysis, which spanned over 18 months, extended the PFC revenue collection period from 2022 to 2033, ensuring long-term stability in rates and charges for airlines.

“My diligent work in securing a 25% amendment to the existing PFC application for the Midfield Terminal program which for the authority is the professional achievement I’m most proud of.,” she said. “…This work took over 18 months of meticulous research of physical records to compile and analyze over 100,000 rows of data into meaningful reporting to demonstrate the need for the amendment and was conducted primarily during COVID-19 pandemic.”

With a vision for the future of airports focused on excellence and public value, Fiscus has a clear impact in mind for her organization and the industry.

“Airports are the first and last impression of visitors to the city and I love being part of an organization that welcomes them and puts the customer experience first and I appreciate how IAA’s leadership is focused on creating public value for the community,” she said.