PANAMA CITY — The head of Northwest Florida Beaches International Airport also will pilot the association for the state’s airport industry, a Wednesday press release states.

Parker McClellan, executive director of Northwest Florida Beaches International Airport (ECP), has been elected chairman of the Florida Airports Council — the official association of the publicly-owned and operated airports in Florida. McClellan will be transitioning from his previous position on the executive committee of the board as vice chairman and will serve as chairman for one year, starting Oct. 1.

“Parker McClellan has served on the FAC board since 2014 and we are excited that he will take on the role as our 2020 chairman in October,” said Lisa Waters, president and CEO of the council. “Parker has served the Florida airport and aviation industry his entire career. He has provided leadership in many areas of our industry over his years of service and most recently, has focused the council on the importance of hurricane preparedness and recovery.

“I have no doubt that Mr. McClellan’s year as chairman will be impactful,” she said.

The council is comprised of members representing all 20 Florida commercial service airports and 79 of the state’s publicly-owned general aviation airports, one spaceport (Cecil Airport) and more than 250 corporate, educational, affiliate, student chapters and student members.

McClellan will work alongside Nina Macpherson, who will continue to serve on the executive committee as immediate past chair.

As chairman, McClellan will be responsible for presiding over meetings, leading the board and the executive committee in the functions of the organization and continued improvement of the many aviation facilities in Florida, as well as professional development of its members.

“It’s an honor to serve as chairman of the board,” McClellan said. “I look forward to further advancing the professional development of our members, improving our facilities and the opportunity to make a positive impact on Florida’s aviation industry.”

McClellan will continue in his role as executive director of the Panama City-Bay County Airport and Industrial District-Northwest Florida Beaches International Airport. Since appointed to this role in 2013, McClellan has been responsible for the management, operation and business development of one of the newest airports in the United States. In 2018, ECP hit one million passengers for the first time in a calendar year. McClellan attributes the growth and success of ECP to his staff and such regional partners as the Bay County Economic Development Council and the area’s Tourist Development Councils.