Barry Lapointe was born and raised in Vancouver, British Columbia. In 1966 he graduated with honours from the British Columbia Institute of Technology’s Aircraft Maintenance Engineers course. Barry obtained a commercial pilot’s license in 1967 and in 1968 became Chief Engineer at Air West Airlines, which later became Air BC.
In 1969 Barry moved to the Okanagan Valley where he displayed his entrepreneurial spirit and desire to own and operate his own company by founding Kelowna Flightcraft Ltd. in 1970. The company initially performed inspection checks, maintenance, and various other tasks on assorted small aircraft and over the years this expanded into courier and charter air services. KFL is now the exclusive air cargo carrier for Purolator Courier. In addition, KFL provides passenger charters to Mexico, Cuba, Florida, Costa Rica and other vacation destinations throughout the America’s as well as worldwide executive jet service. KFL was recently awarded a major contract to provide state of the art training services and facilities that will train our military pilots while creating 200+ new jobs and will put Kelowna Flightcraft on the map for military training. KFL is now the third largest Airline Company in Canada and offers its clients a true one-stop shop. KFL can fly, maintain, modify, engineer, and paint aircraft and train both air crew and maintenance personnel. This includes mechanical, avionics and engines.
In 1999/2000 KFL coordinated a program for Grade 11 and 12 students to experience a perspective career in aviation. In 1999 the aviation industry experienced a shortage in Aircraft Structural Repair Technicians, Barry’s foresight enabled him to realize that a viable solution to this growing issue was to have KFL educate and train British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT) students onsite. In conjunction with BCIT they received Transport Canada’s approval for the Aircraft Structural Repair Technicians Course, the first privately owned company in British Columbia to do so. The course continues to be a success and moved into a brand new facility in the fall of 2005.
At a young age Barry demonstrated his leadership and management skills with an instinctive ability to lead and inspire others. It is a success story of a single, licensed Aircraft Maintenance Engineer who, with confidence and optimism became President and CEO of his own company with over 850 employees and operations across Canada.
Barry has had a life-long interest in aviation and currently holds a Transport Canada, Airline Transport Rated pilots license. He is highly respected for his skills as a pilot, maintenance engineer and entrepreneur. In recognition of his outstanding achievements in the field of Aerospace Engineering Barry has been awarded:
- an Honorary Doctorate degree from the British Columbia Institute of Technology
- Entrepreneur of the year Pacific Region in 1998
- The Aerospace Training Innovator Award from Aerospace Industry Association of British Columbia in 2002.
Barry has a keen interest in Canadian Air Transportation and is a strong supporter of many groups. He is a well-known member of his community and a supporter of the Okanagan Valley.