IATA announces appointment of Carsten Spohr as Board Chairman

Serving as the 78th chair of IATA's Board of Governors, Spohr has been a member of the board since May 2014
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Assuming the role for a one-year term, Spohr succeeds Qatar Airways Group chief executive, His Excellency Akbar Al Baker, who will continue to serve on the BoG.
Assuming the role for a one-year term, Spohr succeeds Qatar Airways Group chief executive, His Excellency Akbar Al Baker, who will continue to serve on the BoG.

In addition to announcing senior changes in leadership and the inclusion of new member airlines, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) announced the appointment of Lufthansa Group CEO, Carsten Spohr, as Chairman of the IATA Board of Governors (BoG).

Assuming the role for a one-year term, Spohr succeeds Qatar Airways Group chief executive, His Excellency Akbar Al Baker, who will continue to serve on the BoG.

Though Spohr was just announced as the 78th chair of the IATA BoG, he has been a member of the board since May 2014.

Commenting on his new role, Spohr shared: “I’m honoured and excited to take on this role at this important time for our industry. We face a number of challenges, including growing protectionism, high taxes and trade wars. Probably the greatest challenge of all is sustainability. The Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation (CORSIA) is a major achievement that will stabilise our carbon emissions from 2020.

“Now we must map out the path to achieving our much more ambitious 2050 goal — to cut net emissions to half 2005 levels. Aviation is serious about its climate change commitments. And we will be pushing hard for governments to do their part by sorting air traffic management inefficiencies and laying the policy framework for the commercialisation of sustainable aviation fuels.”

Serving as the chairman of the executive board of Deutsche Lufthansa AG since 1 May 2014, Spohr manages the entirety of the Lufthansa Group, which includes Network Airlines, Eurowings and Aviation Services, and around 135,000 employees worldwide.

He entered the world of aviation after receiving a graduate degree in business engineering at the University of Karlsruhe.

Commenting on the appointment of the new chairman, Alexandre de Juniac, IATA’s director general and CEO, said: “I look forward to working with Carsten as Chair of the IATA Board of Governors. As we continually seek to broaden the IATA membership, his experience within the Lufthansa Group will be particularly valuable.

“I also want to thank Akbar Al Baker for his strong leadership and support as Chairman over the last year. Under his leadership, IATA has made progress on a number of IATA initiatives including New Distribution Capability, One ID and digital transformation.

“Akbar also encouraged our gender diversity initiatives, leading to the creation of the association’s Diversity and Inclusion Awards to recognize those companies and individuals who are leading in this effort.”

As part of the announcement, the airline association also revealed that JetBlue Airways President and CEO, Robin Hayes, will succeed Spohr as chairman of the BoG from June 2020.

The full list of the 2019-2020 IATA Board of Governors is as follows:

Vitaly Saveliev
Director General and CEO
AEROFLOT

Calin Rovinescu
President and CEO
AIR CANADA

María José Hidalgo Gutiérrez
CEO
AIR EUROPA

Benjamin Smith
CEO
AIR FRANCE/KLM (REPRESENTING AIR FRANCE)

Yuji Hirako
President and CEO
ALL NIPPON AIRWAYS

Douglas Parker
Chief Executive Officer
AMERICAN AIRLINES

Rupert Hogg
Chairman and CEO
CATHAY PACIFIC

Liu Shaoyong
Chairman
CHINA EASTERN AIRLINES

Wang Changshun
Chairman
CHINA SOUTHERN AIRLINES

Pedro Heilbron
CEO
COPA AIRLINES

Ahmed Adel
Chairman and CEO
EGYPTAIR

Tewolde GebreMariam
CEO
ETHIOPIAN AIRLINES

Donald F. Colleran
President and Chief Executive Officer
FEDEX EXPRESS

Christine Ourmières-Widener
CEO
FLYBE

Luis Gallego Martin
CEO
IBERIA

Yuji Akasaka
President
JAPAN AIRLINES

Robin Hayes
President and CEO
JETBLUE AIRWAYS

Sebastian Mikosz
Managing Director and CEO
KENYA AIRWAYS

Walter Cho
Chairman and CEO
KOREAN AIR

Enrique Cueto
CEO
LATAM

Carsten Spohr
Chairman and CEO
LUFTHANSA

Mohamad El-Hout
Chairman/Director General
MIDDLE EAST AIRLINES

Mehmet Tevfik Nane
CEO
PEGASUS AIRLINES

Alan Joyce
CEO
QANTAS

Akbar Al Baker
CEO
QATAR AIRWAYS

Rickard Gustafson
President and CEO
SAS

Saleh Nasser Al Jasser
Director General
SAUDI ARABIAN AIRLINES

Goh Choon Phong
CEO
SINGAPORE AIRLINES

Ajay Singh
Chairman and Managing Director
SPICEJET

Oscar Munoz
CEO
UNITED AIRLINES

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