Mesa Airlines Pilot Wing 3rd Issue (3")
Farmington, NM/Phoenix, AZ 1982-Current
The original Mesa Airlines operation was founded by Larry and Jane Risley of Farminton, NM as the flight division of JB Aviation in 1980. In 1982, it began service as Mesa Air Shuttle. In 1990 they took over most of Aspen Airways routes and bought control
of Air Midwest in 1991. The airline grew rapidly through acquisitions and codehare agreements. They acquired Aspen Airways in 1990 and Mesa gained a codeshare agreement with United Airlines. The airline created a Florida Gulf division operating under a codesharing agreement with US Airways out of Tampa. Two years later, Pittsburgh-based Crown Airways was acquired. In 1998, Mesa recruited Jonathan Ornstein who became the President and CEO. In 1998, with new management, the airlines relocated its corporate headquarters from Farmington to Phoenix. From 1989 to 1998, Mesa Airlines operated as a conglomeration of up to eight separate airlines. For the history of the acquisition and expansion of Mesa Airlines during this time frame see Mesa Air Group. In 1999 Mesa purchased Charlotte-based CCAir. Currently, they operate for United Express and US Airways Express with CRJ 700 and 900 aircraft, Bombardier CRJ 900, Embraer 175 E-Jets equipment.