Published in Midwest Flyer – August/September 2019 issue
Joe Harris, a long-time employee of the Metropolitan Airports Commission (MAC), was recently selected as the new director of Reliever Airports for the MAC. Harris was most recently the manager of the MAC’s largest and smallest reliever airports – St. Paul Downtown and Lake Elmo. With his selection to lead the MAC’s six-airport reliever system, Harris succeeds Gary Schmidt, who is retiring after a 35-year career at the MAC.
Harris joined the MAC in 2000 after working nearly two years as the airport noise program manager for the Rhode Island Airport Corporation and earning a bachelor of science degree in aeronautical studies from the University of North Dakota. Harris also has a master’s degree in management from St. Mary’s University in Minnesota.
The MAC Reliever Airports system is designed to serve general aviation and relieve congestion at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport. The six airports are home to more than half of all registered aircraft in Minnesota.
In addition to St. Paul Downtown and Lake Elmo airports, the reliever airports include Flying Cloud Airport in Eden Prairie; Crystal Airport in Crystal; Airlake Airport in Lakeville, and Anoka County-Blaine Airport in Blaine.
Harris’ appointment was effective July 1, 2019.