VIP Distinguished Speaker Series: American Airlines

Last week, Mr. Thomas Horton, former CEO and President and current Chairman of American Airlines, participated in the VIP Distinguished Series, speaking with Dean Platt and answering students’ questions. Mr. Horton discussed his former executive position and the demands of having such an all-consuming job. With 6700 flights a day, Mr. Horton prioritizes the safety of American’s passengers emphasizing that “the most important thing [the firm does] is get passengers up and down safely.”


Mr. Horton encouraged students to live by their values and principles in all that they do, no matter what challenges come their way. It was in a matter of a few minutes that Mr. Horton was named CEO and Chairman and began the restructuring of American Airlines. However, he used this challenge as an opportunity and not only took the firm through the restructuring successfully, but refreshed the brand and merged American with US Airways. Mr. Horton’s commitment to his people, customers, and values is apparent, and the committee enjoyed hosting this distinct CEO as VIP’s final event of the academic year.

The committee would like to take this time to thank our chair, Charlie Adkins for all of his work throughout the year. We would also thank everybody who came out to a VIP and learned from some of the world’s top business leaders. We look forward to next year’s events!

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