It Looks Like American Airlines Won’t Have A President

American Airlines named its new senior leadership team yesterday. With Robert Isom ascending to CEO when Doug Parker becomes non-executive chairman on March 31, there’s a reshuffle at the top.

Two things struck me about the changes: there was no President announced. I wondered if that piece of the puzzle just wasn’t done yet, and they could be hiring from the outside? And also that their Chief Customer Officer, whom the airline says will remain at the carrier, wasn’t named as part of the leadership group.

It’s looking, however, like no President was named because they do not intend to name one at this time. That could be a head fake, but it seems to be the current narrative.

  • Robert Isom, at last week’s ‘Crew News’ internal employee question and answer forum, described himself as becoming effectively both CEO and President (“president and CEO, you’re looking at both”). I took that to mean the Presidency was temporarily vacant and unnamed going forward, but that interpretation may have been incorrect.

  • American Airlines announced its new leadership team. It was striking for the lack of mention at all of a President. Officially, the airline tells me,

    Robert will remain president until March 31 when he becomes CEO. And we haven’t named anyone to fill the president role after he becomes CEO.

    This suggests the narrative that Isom will be CEO and President isn’t quite right.

  • Reportedly Senior Vice President and Chief Commercial Officer Vasu Raja told employees there will be no President.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. I found your speculation on Joanna Geraghty’s potential candidacy, though, to be very interesting for myriad reasons. Let’s see whether anything actually changes, beyond the press releases and effete statements.

  2. Why is Parker staying until March 31, 2022. The sooner he leaves the sooner American can get things turned around and become the great airline it once was.

  3. Regardless whoever becomes the AA President, they all have one goal to achieve: more profits for the airline & less benefits for consumers. If they can cut back, they would. They are not here for us, but rather to achieve their personal goal for the big bonus at year end. If you hope one would come and turn around to bring more benefits for consumers, time to wake up and smell the Starbucks.

  4. Big Rig Biden will be available in 2024. He gave Barry a blumpkin while onboard a 747, so that qualifies him to run AA.

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