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After a difficult decade, Delta is thriving today as it invests in technology, employees and international growth, according to a profile of CEO Richard Anderson in this week’s Barron’s magazine.

“Straight-laced, cost-conscious, and fonder of Faulkner novels than management tomes, Anderson has proved to be a strategic thinker and innovator in an industry once bereft of both,” journalist Dyan Machan wrote in the influential financial publication.

The article notes that Delta has been paying down debt, aligning strategic international partners and rewarding employees with record-breaking profit-sharing checks. And several innovative decisions, such as the purchase of the oil refinery in Trainer, Penn., and the investment in Virgin Atlantic, have shown how Delta’s management team is leading the industry in reshaping the airline business model.

“Anderson has the right view from 30,000 feet,” former Delta CEO Gerald Grinstein told the magazine.