The mid-level management ranks at the combined American Airlines-US Airways are starting to fill out even though the merger isn't expected to close until this fall.
On Monday, US Airways chief operating officer Robert Isom named several senior vice presidents and vice presidents that will oversee the operations at the carriers once they combine.
"When selecting our team, we identified executives with an eye to operational performance and a commitment to our employees," Isom said in a letter to employees. "Leaders who understand that operating safely and reliably, complying with government regulations, communicating with their teams, minimizing disruptions and delivering excellence in service execution and recovery are imperatives in the airline business."
Eleven of the new operations executives currently work at American Airlines while eleven are employed at US Airways. Tim Campbell, who will become the senior vice president of air operations is currently an integration consultant not employed at either airline while Bob Ciminelli, US Airways' current Philadelphia hub executive, previously worked for American for twenty-nine years.
A flow chart explaining all of the new executive announcements can be found here.
The new senior executives include:
- Kerry Hester, senior vice president of customer experience
- Suzanne Boda, senior vice president of Asia, Canada, Europe & Cargo
- Art Torno, senior vice president of Mexico, Caribbean & Latin America
- Tim Campbell, integration consultant/senior vice president of air operations
- David Seymour, senior vice president of technical operations
- Kenji Hashimoto, senior vice president of regional carriers
- Paul Morell, interim vice president of safety, security and environmental programs
- Ed Bular, senior vice president, single operating certificate
At the vice president level, Isom named:
- Carol Wright, vice president of customer planning
- Tim Lindemann, vice president of reservations
- Donna Paladini, vice president of stations
- Hector Adler, vice president of inflight services
- Kimball Stone, vice president IOC/OCC
- Paul Wroble, vice president of line maintenance
- Bill Collins, vice president of base maintenance
- Tim Ahern, vice president of gateways and hub coordination
- Art Pappas, vice president of the DFW hub
- Franco Tedeschi, vice president of the Chicago hub
- Marilyn DeVoe, vice president of the Miami hub
- Terri Pope, vice president of the Charlotte hub
- Bob Ciminelli, vice president of the Philadelphia hub
The combined carrier's regional airlines will be headed by:
- Pedro Fabregas, president of Eagle (who is replacing Eagle chief executive Dan Garton who had previously announced he would be leaving sometime this year)
- Steve Farrow, president of Piedmont
- Keith Houk, president of PSA
Keep reading for Isom's letter sent to employees on Monday.
Dear Colleagues –
I am pleased to announce our senior leadership team for the new American Airlines operations group. When selecting our team, we identified executives with an eye to operational performance and a commitment to our employees. Leaders who understand that operating safely and reliably, complying with government regulations, communicating with their teams, minimizing disruptions and delivering excellence in service execution and recovery are imperatives in the airline business. We have a tremendous global opportunity before us, and to be able to take best advantage of that opportunity, we have chosen a group of exceptional leaders. As we move forward, there are some positions yet to be determined so I would ask for your continued patience as we refine the leadership team. We will announce any additional officer positions, managing directors, directors and other management roles in the future as the new leaders begin to build their respective organizations.
I am honored to introduce our new team. They report to me, unless noted, and their appointments become effective upon merger closing and confirmation by the new Board of Directors.
Kerry Hester – SVP, Customer Experience. Kerry will coordinate the overall customer experience to ensure that we deliver reliability and convenience before, during, and after travel. She will oversee our customer strategy to provide an efficient product to employees and customers, and manage an effective service recovery program for when things go wrong. Kerry is currently US Airways SVP, Customer Experience. Reporting to Kerry are Customer Planning, Reservations, and Airport Customer Service:
• Carol Wright—VP, Customer Planning. Carol will oversee all planning functions for customer facing operating groups, provide analytical support to operating decisions, measure performance against goals, and lead efforts to offer best in class service recovery. Carol is currently American Airlines VP, Customer Planning
• Tim Lindemann – VP, Reservations. Tim will manage American’s Reservations centers, with a focus on providing efficient and friendly service to each caller and offering centralized support to customers needing assistance during travel. Tim is currently US Airways VP, Reservations and Customer Planning
• Donna Paladini – VP, Stations. Donna will lead safe and reliable airport operations for all domestic non-hub stations. Donna is currently US Airways VP, Airport Customer Service and Ops Support
• Tim Ahern – VP, Gateways and Hub Coordination. Tim will have responsibility for airport operations in Los Angeles, New York, Phoenix, and Washington, DC, and will coordinate with leaders to deliver safe, reliable, and consistent operations at American’s largest airports. Tim is currently American Airlines VP, New York and International. Airport customer service officers at our hubs will remain in place, including Bob Ciminelli, VP PHL (currently US Airways); Marilyn DeVoe, VP MIA (currently American Airlines); Art Pappas, VP DFW (currently American Airlines); Terri Pope, VP CLT (currently US Airways); and Franco Tedeschi, VP ORD (currently American Airlines).
Art Torno – SVP, Mexico, Caribbean, Latin America (MCLA). Art’s portfolio will include the airlines’ growing presence in these regions, coordinating all aspects of the business including airport operations and strategic initiatives. He will also closely partner with the Sales, Real Estate, Government Affairs, Communications and Human Resources groups to strengthen, promote and advocate for the airline in South Florida and throughout MCLA. Art is currently American Airlines VP, Mexico, Caribbean, Latin America
Suzanne Boda – SVP, Asia, Canada, Europe (ACE) and Cargo. Suzanne will oversee international operations in ACE and cargo operations. Suzanne will partner closely with Sales, Real Estate, Government Affairs, Communications and Human Resources to ensure that the airline is well represented internationally. Suzanne is currently US Airways SVP, Airport Customer Service, International and Cargo. Reporting to Suzanne will be:
• Jim Butler – President, Cargo. Jim will be responsible for all aspects of the global cargo business. Jim is currently American Airlines Managing Director, Commercial Planning and Performance
Tim Campbell – Integration consultant. Tim comes to the organization as the current CEO of Mountain Vista Consulting. He spent the first ten years of his aviation career at Boeing as an aerodynamics engineer on the B747-400 and B777 design and certification programs. More recently, Tim was president of Compass Airlines, and previously was VP regional airline operations and VP of flight operations and SOC at Northwest. Tim will lead the integration of the IOC/OCC, Flight and InFlight teams, as well as crew resources, operations planning and performance engineering functions. The following roles will report to Tim after the merger closes when it is expected he will join the company and be named SVP, Air Operations:
• Hector Adler – VP, InFlight Services. Hector will be responsible for all aspects of customer experience during flight. He will lead our flight attendant workforce to consistently deliver world class service, oversee catering operations and delivery, and will partner with Marketing to design an inflight product offering that will make American the airline of choice. Hector is currently US Airways VP, InFlight Services
• Captain Kimball Stone – VP, IOC/OCC. Kimball will have responsibility for American’s operations control center function and will oversee the integration of related functions at both airlines. Kimball is currently American Airlines Managing Director, Integrated Operations Center
• Additionally, the VP Flight position, so critical to the airlines’ core business, remains open to allow the future SVP, Air Operations an opportunity to help me select the best person possible for this important leadership position. Captain Lyle Hogg (US Airways) and Captain John Hale (American Airlines) will remain in their respective VP of Flight positions until the combined organization is developed.
Kenji Hashimoto – SVP, Regional Carriers. Kenji will have responsibility for all regional carrier flying, including wholly owned subsidiaries American Eagle Airlines, PSA and Piedmont and regional affiliates that operate as Eagle and US Airways Express. Kenji is currently American Airlines President, Cargo. Reporting to Kenji will be:
• Pedro Fabregas – President, American Eagle Airlines. Pedro is currently American Eagle SVP, Customer Services
• Steve Farrow – President, Piedmont, remaining in his current position
• Keith Houk – President, PSA, remaining in his current position
David Seymour – SVP, Technical Operations. David will be responsible for all aspects of the airline’s technical operations including line and base maintenance activities. He will oversee engineering, planning and production support of airframes, engines and components in addition to aircraft reliability, regulatory compliance, and aircraft supply chain operations. David is currently US Airways, SVP, Operations. Reporting to David are:
• Paul Wroble –VP, Line Maintenance. Paul will assume responsibilities for all line maintenance operations. Those locations include line maintenance activities in American’s hub airports plus all other manned stations system-wide. Paul is currently US Airways, VP, Maintenance Operations.
• Bill Collins –VP, Base Maintenance. Bill’s responsibilities will include aircraft and engine overhauls. Specifically, Bill will have oversight of the aircraft overhaul operation in TULE, the DWH operation in DFW, the heavy maintenance operations in both CLT and PIT plus our contract heavy maintenance operations worldwide. Bill is currently American Airlines VP, Base Maintenance
• For now, Bill Cavitt (American Airlines) and Kevin Brickner (US Airways) will remain in their current Engineering and Quality roles at their respective airlines. Please note, there will be additional maintenance related officer assignments announced in the weeks ahead.
Captain Paul Morell – Interim VP, Safety, Security and Environmental Programs (SSE). In this transition role, Paul will help the senior management team integrate the American and US Airways SSE teams and identify a long-term successor. The airlines will maintain the appropriate FAA-mandated safety positions at both carriers during the transition to Single Operating Certificate. Paul is currently US Airways VP, Safety, Security and Environmental Programs and will retire once a replacement has been named.
Captain Ed Bular has agreed to help coordinate our efforts to obtain a single operating certificate. Ed is currently US Airways SVP Flight Operations and will leave the company once we are confident of achieving the SOC goal.
I would also like to thank the following officers, whose leadership has laid the foundation for the merger and our future success. In transition roles, they have decades of experience that they have graciously offered to share during our journey to a merged airline, and they will be leaving the company over time. They include:
• David Campbell (American Airlines VP, Safety and Operations Performance)
• Fred Cleveland (American Eagle SVP, Technical Operations and COO)
• Lauri Curtis (American Airlines, VP Flight Service)
• Ken Durst (American Airlines VP, Line Maintenance)
• Dion Flannery (US Airways President, Express Operations)
• John Hutchinson (American Eagle SVP, Finance/Planning and CFO)
• Don Langford (American Airlines VP, Customer Care)
• Bob Maloney (US Airways VP, Operations Control Center)
Please join me in congratulating the officers of the new American Airlines operations organization. I know that they are excited to meet with their teams and appreciate your support. And finally, thank you for staying focused on operating safely and reliably, and for taking good care of our customers and each other as we start to build the world’s best airline.