Dandan - People of Pearson

"I’ve been married to my husband for 24 years, but I tell him that I first fell in love with Cathay 31 years ago. My name is Bernadette, but ever since I started with Cathay, they called me Dandan. Today, I’m the Turnaround Coordinator for Cathay Pacific at Pearson. 

I started with Cathay Pacific in 1989 in Hong Kong, working in the first-class lounge. I saw a lot of growth in my career there, becoming a leader that supervised the Premium Services team and took care of Cathay’s first-class passengers in Hong Kong. I had that position until I moved to Toronto in 2009. After eight months, I got the chance to come back to Cathay and I was so glad I did.

As Turnaround Coordinator, I coordinate with everyone involved with each Cathay flight in and out of Pearson. This includes cargo and ground handlers, baggage coordinators, check-in clerks, pilots and many others. I also have the critical task of ensuring that the flight doesn’t exceed its maximum payload weight, otherwise it will not be able to take off. 

It’s an exciting and rewarding position, as well as very physically active. I do a lot of planning before the flight arrives, but once it lands, things can get hectic. That is when all your planning comes to life all at the same time. 

When I was a young girl, I grew up in the Philippines and I could see planes take off and land in Manila. I became fascinated with airplanes. I would see plenty of Cathay planes and hoped to be one of their passengers one day. Look where I am now. In my 31 years with Cathay Pacific, I have seen and experienced many amazing things, and I’m so grateful to be a part of this industry." 

-Dandan, Turnaround Coordinator, Cathay Pacific 

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