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JetBlue Airways announced today that Joanna Geraghty will step in as chief executive officer of the company effective Feb. 12, 2024, taking the reins from Robin Hayes upon his retirement for health reasons. Geraghty is currently the company’s president and chief operating officer. This is the first time a woman has been named to the top position at a major U.S. airline.

Hayes will continue with the company as a strategic advisor for the next months. “It has been a privilege to lead JetBlue for the past nine years, and I am proud of all we have accomplished,” said Hayes in a press statement. “With a rigorous succession plan in place, the board and I are confident that Joanna is more than ready, given her critical role in running JetBlue’s day-to-day business and positioning the airline for success.”

Lengthy History at JetBlue

Joanna Geraghty

The new CEO boasts nearly 20 years with JetBlue, being named president and COO in 2018, making her responsible for the airline’s operations and commercial performance, including network, brand and marketing, and revenue management. Her experience includes serving as JetBlue’s executive v.p., customer experience; executive v.p., chief people officer; and v.p., associate general counsel and director, litigation and regulatory affairs. She was also a member of the board of the JetBlue Foundation. She holds a law degree and, prior to her tenure at JetBlue, was a partner at a law firm.

“I am honored and excited to serve as the next CEO of JetBlue,” said Geraghty in a press statement. “With a beloved brand, an industry-leading customer experience, a unique culture, and the industry’s best crewmembers, JetBlue has long been a disruptor. I’m excited to continue working with JetBlue’s 25,000 crewmembers who are as energized as I am about challenging the status quo and bringing humanity to an industry long dominated by the legacy carriers. I’m so proud of what we’ve accomplished over the last 20-plus years, and I am looking forward to building on this momentum as we execute on our strategic initiatives, return to profitable growth, and generate sustainable value for our shareholders and all our stakeholders.”

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