Boeing CEO Dave Calhoun leaves company

Less than three months after the very serious accident of the Alaska Airlines Boeing 737 MAX 9, which lost a door in mid-flight on January 5, the head of Boeing resigned. Dave Calhoun, CEO of the American aircraft manufacturer, announced, on the morning of Monday, March 25, his departure from the company at the end of 2024.

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This announcement is accompanied by a significant restructuring of the management team. Stan Deal, head of the commercial aviation branch, immediately left the company and was replaced by Stephanie Pope, who was named chief operating officer earlier this year and was in the running to one day succeed Mr. Calhoun.

“As everyone knows, the crash of Alaska Airlines Flight 1282 was a defining moment for Boeing.”Calhoun said in a letter sent to employees Monday. “We must continue to respond to this accident with humility and complete transparency. We must also demonstrate a total commitment to safety and quality at all levels of our business. »

Disastrous quality process

The president of the board of directors, Larry Kellner, will not see his mandate renewed at the next general meeting. The board chose Steve Mollenkopf, the former head of Qualcomm, to take over. It will be up to him to find a successor to Dave Calhoun.

Boeing expected to recover in 2024, after the two accidents of the 737 MAX 8 that occurred in October 2018 (Lion Air in Indonesia, 189 dead) and March 2019 (Ethiopian Airlines, 157 dead) due to a failure in the in-flight stabilization system. .

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Dave Calhoun, former director of General Electric, was also appointed after these disasters, at the beginning of 2020, to turn the company around and restore, in Washington, the image of a group highly dependent on public military orders. The accident in January 2024 brought him back to his lowest point. Boeing is the subject of a dual civil investigation by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the FBI, which wrote to Alaska Airlines passengers who may have been victims of a criminal offense.

The first results of the investigations are discouraging for the American aircraft manufacturer. It turned out that the plane’s bushing carrier, delivered in September 2023 by a former subsidiary, Spirit AeroSystems, had been removed by Boeing technicians, who wanted to repair the rivets, and had forgotten to replace the screws used to secure it. Overall, Boeing’s quality process is catastrophic. Of eighty-nine audits conducted by the FAA to test its industrial procedures, the company failed thirty-three times.

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