The speeches are free of charge but please note that the Empire Club of Canada retains copyright. Neither the speeches themselves nor any part of their content may be used for any purpose other than personal interest or research without the explicit permission of the Empire Club of Canada.
Porter Airlines: Taking off at Billy Bishop
Born in Chapleau, Ontario, Robert Deluce grew up in nearby White River and was destined to be in the aviation business.
Robert’s father was a flyer for the Royal Canadian Air Force in the Second World War, and in 1951, he formed White River Air Service, flying Beaver, Otter and Cessna aircraft from bases across Northern Ontario. Robert’s father, along with Robert and his siblings, also played a critical role in the creation of norOntair and Air Creebec, and became owners or partners in several regional airlines, including Austin Airways, Air Ontario, Air Manitoba, Air Alliance and Canada 3000.
As a youth, Robert was a pilot with White River Air Service and has maintained his pilot’s license since age 17. Deluce earned a B.Sc. from McGill University in 1971.
He founded Porter Airlines in 2006 as a small regional service. It is now the third largest scheduled airline in Canada, serving 19 markets in Canada and the United States.
Robert is also President and CEO of Deluce Capital Corp., and serves as a Board Member for Mount Sinai Hospital, and as a Director of Vector Aerospace Corporation. He is a former Director of the Arthritis and Autoimmunity Research Foundation of University Health Network, and also a former Director with Invesprint Corp., and Spar Aerospace Limited.
Robert has received many honours and awards, including the Ernst and Young Emerging Entrepreneur of the Year Award, the CPRS CEO Award of Excellence in Public Relations, and an Honourary Doctorate from Laurentian University, Sudbury.