Our Team

Our team is made up of innovative specialist engineers (avionics, mechanical, electrical, software) and leaders in their fields covering installation/certification, industrial design, customer experience, revenue management and business development.
Meet the teamMeet the team

Paul Thorpe

President, Europe, Middle East and Africa

Paul joined Burrana in 2014 from Rockwell Collins where he had been Sales Director for airline sales, covering avionic and inflight entertainment (IFE) systems. His career began as an apprentice with British Aerospace; then he worked on sales for BAe Corporate Jets before joining Sextant Avionique (now Thales) in 1995. Paul is highly experienced in aircraft IFE integration and installations, maintenance and customer support. Paul has a Master of Business Administration and a Bachelor of Engineering.

Lawrence Lee

President, Asia-Pacific

Lawrence joins Burrana from Thales. He has more than 15 years of experience in the aerospace industry, having held previous roles at Singapore Airlines and the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore. Lawrence brings an extensive knowledge of IFE and connectivity products
to Burrana.

Gene Connelly

President, Americas

Gene was previously Senior Vice President of Global Sales and Customer Support for Panasonic Avionics. During this time, he was responsible for the company’s sales and awards. His organization also included Product Management, Marketing and Customer Support worldwide. His earlier background included various leadership roles in Program Management and Operations for Rockwell Collins and other aerospace companies, totaling 28 years of experience in the inflight entertainment and communication (IFEC) industry. Gene has a Master of Business Administration and a Bachelor of Science in Systems Engineering.

Joanne Weeks

Vice President, OEM and Programs

Joanne joins Burrana from the recent acquisition of Rockwell Collins’s IFE PAVES products, where she led the OEM Business Development for IFEC products. Her other roles were Director of Program Management for the EMEA region, head of the dTES product line and programs, and Director of Rockwell’s content services business. With 30+ years in both commercial and military aviation, Joanne brings her highly diverse experience in customer relationships and the execution of programs. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration and professional designations in Procurement and Program Management.

Thierry Despres

Vice President, Airline Services

Thierry brings more than 25 years of aerospace industry experience to Burrana. Thierry previously worked for Zodiac Aerospace and Safran, where he held senior leadership positions across mechanical engineering, manufacturing, quality, logistics, repairs and aftermarket services.

Salvador Montes

Vice President, Manufacturing, Supply Chain and Quality

Salvador brings a multicultural manufacturing operations skill set to Burrana, and has more than 20 years of aerospace industry experience. His previous roles have been with GE Aircraft Engines, Bombardier Aerospace, Honeywell Aerospace, UTC Aerostructures and Icon Aircraft.

David Withers

Chief Executive Officer

David has more than 25 years' experience in the aviation industry. He is former President of Boeing Australia and was the Managing Director for Smiths Aerospace (now GE Aviation) after completing his time with Qantas Airways. David has a Master of Business Administration, an Honors degree in Communications Engineering, trade qualifications in Aircraft Maintenance and is a commercial pilot. He is a fellow of the Royal Aeronautical Society, the Australian Institute of Company Directors and the Australian Institute of Management.

Peter Stevens

Chief of Staff

Peter brings extensive experience from previous senior executive leadership roles in Raytheon Australia, ForestrySA and the Australian Army. His skill set encompasses operations planning, complex organisational transformation, leadership, strategic planning, project management, business development and supply-chain analysis. Peter is a graduate of the University of New South Wales, with a Master’s degree in Management and a Bachelor of Arts. He is a graduate of the Royal Military College Duntroon, the Australian Graduate School of Management and the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Andrew Mullis

Chief Financial Officer

Andrew joined the company in 2013 and has more than 20 years' experience in senior finance roles in public and private companies including InvoCare, Bledisloe Group, Dolomatrix and QCT Resources. Prior to these roles, Andrew was a Senior Manager at KPMG in Brisbane and London. Andrew is a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants and holds a Master of Applied Finance and a Bachelor of Commerce.

Stuart Ketchion

Vice President, Engineering

Stuart joined Burrana in 2011 and quickly succeeded in instrumentally designing and building our extended product portfolio as VP of Engineering, heading up both the software and hardware groups. Stuart previously held the position of Manager of Engineering Quality at Microair and holds a Bachelor of Engineering (Aerospace Avionics).

David Pook

Vice President, Marketing and Sales Support

David Pook joins Burrana from Thales InFlyt Experience, where he was Director of Operational Marketing. He brings more than 20 years’ aviation experience across systems engineering, product management, programs and marketing. His other roles have included Director of Applications Product Line, Director of Programs and Senior Systems Engineer.
David holds a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering and Marketing Strategy Certificate.

Mike Bower

Vice President, 
Transition and Integration

Mike joins Burrana from Queensland Rail where he led the Portfolio Management Office, having responsibility for developing the 10-year Capital Plan as well as providing governance and framework support to the capital portfolio. Mike previously had extensive global experience with GE, graduating from the Corporate Audit Staff program in 2013. Mike holds a Master of Business Administration and a Bachelor of Commerce, and professional designations in Project Management.

Jorge Mompo

Director of Sales, Latin America

With more than 30 years’ experience in the aviation industry, Jorge began his aviation career in business aviation technical and support, followed by a move to IFE where he held engineering, sales and marketing roles with Sony Trans Com, Panasonic and Lumexis, serving mainly the Americas. In addition to commercial aviation, Jorge’s experience also spans broadcast television and digital cinematography; he previously managed Sony’s business development for Latin America.

Mike Easterling

Director, North America and Caribbean Accounts

Mike joins Burrana from Panasonic Avionics, where he was an Account Director and responsible for one of their largest airline accounts. He brings more than 30 years’ experience in aviation and more than 20 years in IFE. Mike’s experience includes Account Management, Engineering, Customer Support and Aircraft Maintenance. He started his career in aviation in the United States Navy as an avionics technician; he then worked with Delta Air Lines as an aviation maintenance technician and reliability analyst before moving to Panasonic Avionics.

Paul Freegard

Account Manager, 
Europe, Middle East and Africa

Paul brings to Burrana 30 years’ experience in IFE, with extensive experience in Program Management, Service and Support, Commercial and Sales. He has held Senior Leadership roles for B/E Aerospace, Rockwell Collins and Panasonic. Paul has skill sets covering Maintenance Operations 
On-Board and Workshop, Process Improvement, Maintenance Operations and Strategic Planning. He holds Higher National Diplomas in Electronic Engineering, Business and Management.

Marc Cougoule

Account Director, Europe, Middle East and Africa

Marc has 18 years of experience in the aerospace industry, including four years with various airlines in the Middle East. He has joined Burrana from Thales. Marc is focused on customer satisfaction, and his previous roles include sales, customer support and services, as well as engineering. Marc holds a Master of Electronics and Telecommunication from ENSEEIHT, the largest national school of engineering in France.

Ahmad ‘Tak’ Takieddine

Sales Director, Middle East

Tak brings extensive experience in aviation sales and engineering to Burrana. His previous role was Director of Sales and Support (Middle East/Africa) at Rockwell Collins (now Collins Aerospace). Earlier in his career, Tak worked as Sales Director for Honeywell Aerospace, European Area Manager Sales/Support for Delco Systems, and Systems and Development Engineer for Middle East Airlines. Tak holds a Bachelor of Science with Honours from Hatfield University and a Master of Science in Aviation Electronics (Avionics) from Cranfield University.

Zhipeng (Edwin) Wang

Regional Director, China

Edwin has more than 20 years of experience in the aviation industry. He recently worked as Director for Global Eagle Entertainment, where he managed a technical and operations team in China. Edwin also previously worked for Rockwell Collins as Account Director, and Thales as Avionics Manager. Edwin holds a degree from Southwest Jiaotong University in China. His rich experience in sales and customer support will be an asset as Burrana continues to grow our business in China.

Natasha Byhalove

Employee Engagement and Culture Manager

Natasha is responsible for defining and driving Burrana’s international employee engagement and culture strategy. Her responsibilities include supporting leadership in talent acquisition and performance management, while establishing our leadership-development program and streamlining people processes. Natasha has close to 10 years’ aviation-industry experience, and previously supported Boeing’s subsidiaries including Jeppesen and Aviall, where she held Senior HR Manager positions across Australia and Asia Pacific, and she held a similar role at GE Aviation.