ATLANTA, March 5, 2008 – Delta Air Lines (NYSE: DAL) today announced it has promoted three key leaders in operations who are integral to the company’s operational success and named an industry veteran to lead the airline’s Airport Customer Service division.
Tony Charaf, 60, has been named president of Delta TechOps, the airline’s maintenance division. This promotion signals the steadfast commitment of the Delta leadership team to further expand its multimillion dollar maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) business. In this role, Tony will continue to lead the entire Technical Operations maintenance organization.
“The MRO business offers a boost to Delta’s bottom line and under Tony’s visionary leadership, the people of Delta TechOps have grown it into the largest airline MRO operation in North America, earning more than $375 million in revenues last year alone,” said Delta CEO Richard Anderson. “The flexible and proven TechOps team continues to build its business by focusing on high-skilled work such as engines, components, line and base maintenance – and they are energized by the prospects of further cementing their leadership position in the growing global MRO market.”
In addition, John Laughter, 37, who had been serving as vice president – Maintenance Operations is being promoted to senior vice president – Maintenance Operations. In this position Laughter will expand his responsibilities in Delta’s day-to-day maintenance operation as Tony Charaf dedicates more time to the growing MRO business. He will continue to report to Charaf.
In recognition of Delta’s top-tier operational performance, fuel conservation results and industry-leading work towards real solutions for the capacity-strained Northeastern U.S. airspace, Neil Stronach, 42, who had been serving as vice president – Operational Control and Reliability will be promoted to senior vice president – Operations Control.
“Delta is an industry leader in operational performance and that is in large part thanks to the thoughtful and strategic way John Laughter and Neil Stronach conduct their business every day,” said Steve Gorman, Delta’s executive vice president - Operations.
Another critical role in the operations team also will be filled by Gil West, 47, as the company’s new senior vice president – Airport Customer Service. West will join the team on March 10 and will be responsible for all of Delta’s more than 300 airports and 15,000 airport employees who work as airport agents, baggage handlers and customer service specialists.
West joins Delta with a diverse and extensive background, having most recently worked as president and chief executive officer of Laidlaw Transit Services. Prior to that, West served as CEO for a private equity firm, president and COO of TIMCO Aviation Services and has held leadership positions at Northwest Airlines, United Airlines and The Boeing Company.
“I am very pleased to welcome Gil to the Delta operations team,” Gorman said. “His skill set and background will bring to the ACS team a depth of business experience that will build on Delta’s reputation as a customer service airline.”
“We are highly confident in the senior team we have assembled in Operations at Delta Air Lines and together we will work to achieve industry-leading performance in providing on-time, reliable and positive experiences for our customers,” said Gorman.
Delta TechOps is the largest airline MRO in North America, earning more than $375 million in revenue in 2007. In addition to providing maintenance and engineering support for Delta's fleet of 440 aircraft, Delta TechOps serves more than 100 aviation and airline customers from around the world, specializing in high-skill work like engines, components, hangar and line maintenance. Delta TechOps employs more than 6,500 maintenance professionals and is one of the most experienced MRO providers in the world with more than seven decades of aviation expertise.
Delta Air Lines operates service to more worldwide destinations than any airline with Delta and Delta Connection flights to 315 destinations in 59 countries. Delta has added more international capacity than any major U.S. airline during the last two years and is the leader across the Atlantic with flights to 36 trans-Atlantic markets. To Latin America and the Caribbean, Delta offers more than 650 weekly flights to 65 destinations. Delta's marketing alliances also allow customers to earn and redeem SkyMiles on nearly 14,000 flights offered by SkyTeam and other partners. Delta is a founding member of SkyTeam, a global airline alliance that provides customers with extensive worldwide destinations, flights and services. Including its SkyTeam and worldwide codeshare partners, Delta offers flights to 744 worldwide destinations in 151 countries. Customers can check in for flights, print boarding passes and check flight status at delta.com.