Mr Morton said the airport enjoys "tremendous" local support
A new director has been appointed at Durham Tees Valley Airport.
Mike Morton, who already holds the post at Robin Hood Airport, Doncaster Sheffield, will now manage both sites.
Mr Morton, who has 14 years' experience in the industry, has replaced Kerry Quinn, who has moved to a new post at Cardiff Airport.
He said he was "optimistic" about the airport's future. Peel Airports, the parent group, made the announcement on Friday.
Mr Morton, a former mining engineer, said: "Nobody can pretend that everything in the garden is rosy for regional airports, but I do believe that there are real grounds for optimism at Durham Tees Valley."
He added that recent restructuring of the business had put the airport in a "strong position".
He said: "In recent months we have been able to attract new scheduled services to Southampton and Dublin, together with increases in our summer holiday programme.
"With 2.7 million people living within an hour's drive, we know that we enjoy tremendous local support."