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Old 12-08-2008, 01:26 PM   #1  
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Default Alaska Air Group Announces Changes to Strengthen Senior Leadership

Alaska Air Group Announces Changes to Strengthen Senior Leadership
Monday December 8, 3:00 pm ET Brad Tilden elected Alaska Airlines' president; Glenn Johnson becomes
Alaska Air Group CFO; Ben Minicucci assumes new COO role at Alaska

SEATTLE, Dec. 8 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- The Alaska Air Group board of directors and Bill Ayer, chairman and chief executive officer, today announced a realignment to strengthen the company's senior leadership.

As part of the changes, Brad Tilden has been elected president of Alaska Airlines, reporting to Ayer. Previously Alaska Air Group's chief financial officer and executive vice president of finance and planning, Tilden will oversee the airline's operating divisions and marketing, in addition to retaining responsibility for network planning and revenue management.

"Brad's engaging leadership style and strong values, coupled with his financial judgment and commitment to ongoing process improvement, make him the right person to take on expanded responsibility for our operations, marketing, planning and customer experience as we continue to improve our long-term competitiveness," Ayer said.

Tilden joined Alaska Airlines as controller in 1991 and was promoted to chief financial officer in 2000. Prior to joining Alaska, he spent eight years with the accounting firm of Price Waterhouse at its offices in Seattle and Melbourne, Australia. He holds bachelor's and master's degrees in business administration and is a private pilot.

Replacing Tilden as chief financial officer and executive vice president of finance for Alaska Air Group and Alaska Airlines is Glenn Johnson, formerly Alaska Airlines' executive vice president of customer service -- airports and maintenance and engineering. In addition to leading the company's finance organization, he will oversee information technology, strategic planning and corporate real estate.

Johnson has had a long career at Alaska Airlines and sister carrier Horizon Air in a variety of finance and customer service roles, including vice president of finance and treasurer at both carriers. "Glenn's extensive background in finance, as well as his operational and customer service expertise, makes him uniquely qualified to lead our finance, real estate, IT and strategic planning efforts at this critical time," Ayer said.

The company also announced the election of Ben Minicucci as Alaska Airlines' chief operating officer and executive vice president of operations. Previously vice president of Seattle operations, Minicucci will report to Tilden in this new position, and will lead flight operations and maintenance and engineering, in addition to airport customer service.

"In the year since Ben assumed leadership of our Seattle operation, he has re-engineered a host of operational functions, resulting in dramatic improvements to our on-time performance and baggage handling. Through this promotion, he will be more directly positioned to drive similar improvements throughout our network," Ayer said.

Minicucci was Alaska Airlines' staff vice president of maintenance and engineering before overseeing the airline's Seattle operations. He came to Alaska from Air Canada and a 14-year career in the Canadian Armed Forces, where he was responsible for aircraft maintenance. He holds bachelor's and master's degrees in mechanical engineering.

Stepping into a vice president role leading Alaska Air Group's planning and revenue management, reporting to Tilden, will be Andrew Harrison. Formerly managing director of planning, Harrison joined Alaska Airlines after a 16-year career in public accounting.

As part of the leadership changes, Gregg Saretsky, formerly Alaska Airlines' executive vice president of flight and marketing, will leave the company. "Gregg is a highly respected leader who guided our transcontinental expansion and built a strong marketing organization that has helped us fend off relentless competition," Ayer said. "We appreciate his many contributions during his 10 years at Alaska."
Alaska Airlines and sister carrier Horizon Air together serve more than 90 cities through an expansive network in Alaska, the Lower 48, Hawaii, Canada and Mexico. Alaska Airlines ranked "Highest in Customer Satisfaction among Traditional Network Carriers (tie)" in the J.D. Power and Associates 2008 North America Airline Satisfaction Study(SM). For reservations, visit alaskaair.com. For more news and information, visit the Alaska Airlines/Horizon Air Newsroom at alaskaair.com/newsroom.

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Old 12-08-2008, 02:30 PM   #2  
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"As part of the leadership changes, Gregg Saretsky, formerly Alaska Airlines' executive vice president of flight and marketing, will leave the company."

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Yeah, I bet he'll be "leaving" the company. What a nice way of saying he was "fired"!

Perhaps for being a loose cannon and spouting off about huge number of furloughs before all the early out and LOA numbers had been tallied.
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Old 12-08-2008, 02:31 PM   #3  
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That Andrew Harrison guy isn't related to the union busting firm Ford & Harrison is he? A shot in the dark, but it made my ears prick up.
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Old 12-08-2008, 04:26 PM   #4  
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Yeah, I bet he'll be "leaving" the company. What a nice way of saying he was "fired"!

Perhaps for being a loose cannon and spouting off about huge number of furloughs before all the early out and LOA numbers had been tallied.
Boy, I sure don't think so. Saretsky is one of the most intelligent managers around. He knows his stuff cold. He will show up real soon at another airline. I think he's been playing the "bad cop" role around Alaska as part of his new job interview. Isn't Westjet needing a CEO or isn't Tilton venturing off to the ATA from United?
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Old 12-08-2008, 04:41 PM   #5  
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Boy, I sure don't think so. Saretsky is one of the most intelligent managers around. He knows his stuff cold. He will show up real soon at another airline. I think he's been playing the "bad cop" role around Alaska as part of his new job interview. Isn't Westjet needing a CEO or isn't Tilton venturing off to the ATA from United?
One would think that Alaskan management required him to sign some type of non-compete clause as part of his departing severance package. With that said it might be safe to say his glamor days of working in the airline industry are over.
 
Old 12-08-2008, 05:26 PM   #6  
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One would think that Alaskan management required him to sign some type of non-compete clause as part of his departing severance package. With that said it might be safe to say his glamor days of working in the airline industry are over.
Good point and I hope your correct. I am probably giving him to much credit, but I would hate to see him show up at the competition.
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Old 12-08-2008, 06:53 PM   #7  
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You are giving him more credit than he deserves. Once you hear him speak more than a few times you realize his knowledge has no depth. He is all chrome, no chassis.

Last edited by HangOn; 12-09-2008 at 07:49 AM.
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Old 12-08-2008, 11:31 PM   #8  
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You are giving him more credit than he deserves. Once you hear him speak more than a few times you realize his knowledge has no depth. He his all chrome, no chassis.
Right on. I have had many dealings with Gregg and I can say he is not all you crack him up to be. He has ZERO leadership skills. He has no principles or substance. He is no dummy but he should not ever run an organization.
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Old 12-26-2008, 09:08 AM   #9  
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Heard through the grapevine that Gregg got caught with his hand in the Row 44 cookie jar. Maybe a little ethics dilemma. Seems to be going around with management folks these days.
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