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Airforwarders Association Appoints Rock-It Global’s Jacob Fisher As Newest Board Member

board Airforwarders want better infrastructure to facilitate shipments of export cargo and import cargo in international trade.

Airforwarders Association Appoints Rock-It Global’s Jacob Fisher As Newest Board Member

Rock-It Global Chief Administration Officer Sasha Goodman’s  term expires after 12 years of service on AfA Board of Directors

Rock-it Global has signaled its close support for the Airforwarders Association (AfA) by maintaining a leading presence on its Board of Directors following Sasha Goodman’s term, which expires at the end of 2022.

Although unrelated to Goodman’s departure, Jacob (Jake) Fisher, Vice President and General Counsel to AfA Platinum member Rock-It Global, will join the AfA Board, effective immediately.

“Jake brings a wealth of industry experience and legal expertise to the AfA board,” said Kirk McCann, AfA Chairman of the Board, and Executive Director of North American Development, Scan Global Logistics.

“Please join the Board of Directors and me in congratulating Jake on this prestigious appointment. We look forward to working with him in advancing the agenda for AfA.”

Longstanding and esteemed member of the AfA Board Sasha Goodman, Chief Administration Officer, Rock-It Global, will remain an active AfA member continuing on the planning committee for the AfA AirCargo Conference, at which she will take a leadership role in the women’s networking event.

The AfA AirCargo Conference takes place in Nashville, Tennessee, February 12 – 14, 2023.

“Sasha has done a tremendous job not only representing our company but also advocating for women in our industry,” said Paul Martins, Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Global Critical Logistics, the parent company of Rock-it Global, Dietl International, Dynamic International, Cosdel, and CargoLive.

“It is fantastic that our company will continue to be well represented on the AfA Board by Jake Fisher.

“Thank you again Sasha and congratulations, Jake!”

Fisher was elected to fill an interim slot created by the departure of Brendan Akamu, who recently accepted a position with Hawaiian Airlines.

Airline members are not eligible to hold a seat on AfA’s board.

Akamu’s former seat term expires this Fall, at which time Fisher will be required to run for re-election for a four-year term.

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Airforwarders Association Calls On Software Providers To Better Communicate The Benefits Of Digitization To Encourage Wider Adoption

Forwarders are ready to digitalize but need to better understand a demonstrated value proposition, Brandon Fried, Executive Director, Airforwarders Association (AfA) told delegates at the CNS Partnership Conference in Phoenix.

Forwarders are ready to invest in digitization but need to better understand its worth beyond being a shipper or regulatory requirement, Brandon Fried told delegates at the CNS Partnership Conference in Phoenix.

“There has been steady acceptance and adoption in the air cargo sector at large, but within the independent freight forwarder community, digitization is driven by the shipper,” said Fried.

“Many AfA members invested in automation before the pandemic and could work from home, so in many ways the COVID lockdowns were a gigantic proof of concept.

“But for continued and more widespread streamlining of operations through digitization, there needs to be a more clearly articulated value proposition.”

Fried emphasized that for the necessary increased engagement to happen forwarders need to understand what is at stake.

Acknowledging the challenge of reaching out to the diverse US forwarder community of up to 4000, Fried stressed that software providers had to be better at demonstrating the benefits of digital compliance.

“If the benefits of adopting a specific automation solution are not properly communicated, forwarders won’t move on from legacy practices,” said Fried.

“The software providers have to be better at demonstrating the benefits of digitization and until they do I think the industry at large is paying the price.”

Fried was speaking at the CNS Partnership Conference 2022, attended by a record-breaking 750 delegates from across the globe.

About Airforwarders Association

The Airforwarders Association (AfA) represents more than 200 member companies dedicated to moving cargo throughout the supply chain.

The association’s members range from small businesses with fewer than 20 employees to large companies employing more than 1,000 people and business models varying from domestic to worldwide freight forwarding operations.

In short, they are the travel agents for freight shipments, moving cargo in the timeliest and most cost-efficient manner whether it is carried on aircraft, truck, rail or ship. For more information, visit the association’s website at:


Afa cargostack tiaca forwarders

The Airforwarders Association is Taking a Leading Role

Freight is piling up. Back in February 2022, the COVID-19 omicron variant was sidelining employees in all sectors. Air cargo shippers were no exception, and the bottlenecks produced a downstream effect that is still being felt today. 

While the freight pile-up has eased just slightly, the same cannot be said for Shanghai. With one of the largest manufacturing centers in all of China, the country’s “zero-COVID” strategy has resulted in lockdowns that are impacting the entire export (and import) sectors. A mind-boggling 9 out of 10 trucks are sidelined and up to 50% of air traffic has been diverted. While this has yet to be fully felt Stateside, a tsunami of deferred cargo is coming and the impact could be quite severe. 

All of this has pushed industry players into intense preparation and strategy phases. One such association is the Airforwarders Association (AfA). Known within the industry as the travel agents for freight shipments, AfA represents 200 + member companies that move cargo throughout the supply chain. Members are as small as family businesses with 20 or fewer employees to 1,000 + companies. AfA is rightly concerned about the present state of affairs and with the objective of minimizing the pending impact, members of AfA’s Airport Congestion Committee (ACC) have agreed to work on five critical issues:

  • Technology and Automation
  • Service Standards
  • Airport Facilities and Infrastructure
  • Staffing and Hours of Operation
  • Regulatory and Paperwork Challenges

The above five were identified via a comprehensive survey of airport cargo stakeholders. The AfA collaborated with the National Customs Brokers and Forwarders Association of America (NCBFAA) and the Airports Council International-North America (ACI-NA) on the survey. The ultimate deliverable is a Recommendation Paper highlighting the congestion challenges as well as proposed solutions. 

The survey generated hundreds of responses and Donna Mullins, Vice President of AfA member Kale Info Solutions, and Chair of the ACC is optimistic that said paper will be put to use. ACC additionally intends to present its potential solutions to members of Congress as well as the Secretary of Transportation. They’ve received strong buy-in across the supply chain, including but not limited to forwarders, ground handlers, trucking and tech companies, airlines, and airports. 

If the slow-moving tsunami is indeed upon us, a coordinated response is going to be critical. The ACC’s next steps and deliverables are said to be decided at the end of May.