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December 08, 2013

Executive vice president, people and communications: Elise Eberwein


Elise EberweinElise Eberwein

Executive vice president, people and communications

Previous position: executive vice president, people, communications and public affairs, US Airways

Age: 48

Education: B.A., Lindenwood University; MBA, Colorado State University.

Career: Started as a flight attendant at TWA. Worked in media relations, employee communications and other roles at Frontier Airlines. Joined America West in 2003 as vice president of corporate communications.

Top of to-do list: “It’s getting operations on the line and start meeting the employees and the leaders that are out there and figure out how we are going to create a culture here at an airline this size that allows people to feel like they’re part of something bigger than themselves.”

Expected challenges: “The challenge is the people doing the real work of the airline — mechanics, the flight attendants, the reservationists, the pilots — they don’t sit at offices, they don’t gather around the water cooler. ... To have them feel connected to something in the same way that management does sitting at headquarters. ... It’s the age-old challenge that airlines have of connecting with people who, for them, their offices are at 35,000 feet.”

One thing that people may not know about you: Her husband is a pilot for US Airways. “I met him when he was informational picketing my first week working for Doug [Parker] at America West.”

-Andrea Ahles

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