Garðar Forberg

Military Representative – Iceland

  • Last updated: 05 Aug. 2020 16:52

Garðar is born on the 6th of August 1971 in Reykjavík, Iceland. During his childhood years, he lived with his parents in the United States and later during his adolescent years in Luxembourg. He moved back to Iceland in 1987 where he graduated with a commercial degree from the Commercial College of Iceland in 1991.

Somewhat unusually, hailing from a country with no military forces, he enrolled in the officer training program of the German Armed Forces, where he graduated from the Officer School of the Bundeswehr (Offizierschule des Heeres) in 1995.

Garðar has worked for most of his professional career in aviation. He started out in 1997 as an operations officer and later project manager for Air Atlanta Icelandic where he had the opportunity to work in a myriad of countries such as Spain, Israel, Ivory Coast, Saudi Arabia, Nigeria as well as in various locations in Europe.

He was promoted to Marketing Manager in 2001 and Director of Sales in 2003, a position he held until 2006.

In 2006, he was hired by Icelandair as President and CEO of its subsidiary, Smartlynx Airlines, based in Riga, Latvia. During his tenure the airline grew from two Airbus 320s to a total fleet of 13 aircraft.

In 2009, Garðar became a managing Partner and co-owner of Avion Capital Partners in Sion, Switzerland. Avion Capital Partners provides a range of specialized management and consultancy services in various sectors of the aviation industry.

In 2011, Avion Capital Partners acquired Lithuanian based airline Avion Express. He moved to Vilnius to oversee the airline as representative of the board of directors and his co-shareholders. Later he took over as its President and CEO. The airline grew rapidly from a single Airbus 320 to a fleet of 23 aircraft, positioning the company as a global leader in its market segment. The airline was succesfully sold to a aviation consortium in 2018.

During his aviation career, Garðar has had the opportunity to serve for Iceland on numerous occasions. In the 1990s he was involved in the planning and execution of several exercises such as Northern Viking and Cooperative Safeguard. As a member of the Iceland Crisis Response Unit (ICRU), he served in 2003 as the KFOR Chief of Air Movement at Pristina APOD in Kosovo. In 2004, he served as the ISAF Commander of Kabul Airport (KAIA). In 2006, he was deployed to PRT Chagcharan, Afghanistan, where he served as the Commander of an Icelandic Mobile Military and Observation Team (MLOT). In 2009, he took another leave of absence for one year to be assigned as a VNC to the NATO International Staff focusing on the rehabilitation of the Civil Aviation Sector in Afghanistan.

As of August 2019, Garðar is the Icelandic Military Representative to NATO.

Garðar is a member of the Icelandic Air Ground Rescue where he learned to parachute and skydive. As part of his training he had the chance to attend and graduate from the US Army Jumpmaster School in Fort Benning, Georgia.

He has one teenage daughter who attends High School in Brussels.