2013 Gala Honoree, Recipient of the Benjamin Franklin Award
The French-American Foundation will honor Olivier Zarrouati, Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the Management Board of Zodiac Aerospace, as a 2013 co-recipient of the Benjamin Franklin Award.
The Benjamin Franklin Award is presented by the French-American Foundation to an individual or organization that has made a meaningful and lasting contribution to the French-American relationship.
Olivier Zarrouati was appointed Chief Executive Officer of Zodiac Aerospace in 2007. Zodiac Aerospace is a world leader in aerospace equipment and systems for commercial, regional, and business aircraft, as well as helicopters and space applications. With efficient industrial and management strategies, Zodiac Aerospace’s technological expertise is based on three core business lines: comfort and life on board aircraft, onboard systems, and safety on the ground and in flight. These lines are grouped into five business segments: Zodiac Cabin & Structures, Zodiac Seats, Zodiac Galleys & Equipment, Zodiac Aircraft Systems, and Zodiac Aerosafety, supplemented by the customer service branch of Zodiac Services. Altogether, the Zodiac Aerospace businesses employ more than 28,000 people worldwide, including 6,000 in France and 12,000 in the United States. Zodiac Aerospace works with clients throughout the world, offering a comprehensive range of products and services to respond to new challenges in aerospace, and participates in all main civilian aerospace programs.
Mr. Zarrouati is a graduate of the Ecole Polytechnique (1980) and the Ecole Nationale Supérieure de l’Aéronautique et de l’Espace (SUPAERO, 1982). He started his career as a defense engineer before joining the French Space Agency (Centre National d’Études Spatiales). In 1989, he joined Matra Marconi Space as project manager for earth observation satellites. He then joined Intertechnique in 1998 as Director of Development. This company was acquired by Zodiac in 1999. He has held successive positions within Zodiac Aerospace, including CEO of Zodiac AeroSafety and CEO of the group’s aeronautical businesses. He is currently Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the Management Board.
Mr. Zarrouati also serves as President of the Groupement des Équipementiers Aéronautiques (GEAD) of the GIFAS association (Groupement des Industries Françaises Aéronautiques et Spatiales). Founded in 1908, GIFAS is a professional association of 300 companies specialized in the study, development, implementation, sales, and maintenance of aeronautical programs and materials. Since 2011, Olivier Zarrouati has also served as President of the ISAE SUPAERO Foundation. The Institut Supérieur de l’Aéronautique et de l’Espace (ISAE) was created in 2007 from the merger of two prestigious French “Grandes Ecoles”: SUPAERO (1909) and ENSICA (1945). ISAE is today a worldwide reference in aerospace higher education and research.