Scott Kirby to replace Munoz as United Airlines CEO in leadership shuffle

WASHINGTON: United Airlines President Scott Kirby will take over as CEO, replacing Oscar Munoz will step aside in a leadership shuffle next year, the company announced Thursday.

Following the shareholders meeting in late May, Munoz will move on to become executive chairman of the board of directors for one year, the company said in a statement.

“With United in a stronger position than ever, now is the right time to begin the process of passing the baton to a new leader,” Munoz said in a statement.

Kirby was recruited to United Airlines by Munoz in August 2016.

Munoz said, “One of my goals as CEO was to put in place a successful leadership transition for United Airlines. I brought Scott to United three years ago, and I am confident that there is no one in the world better equipped to lead United to even greater heights.”

Munoz faced some rocky moments in recent years after incidents were caught on video and spread online showing passengers mistreated by airline personnel.

In April 2017, United cancelled a plan for Munoz to take on executive chairman role along with the CEO post last year, and instead decided to keep the positions separate.

As part of the transition announced Thursday, United’s current Chairman, Jane Garvey, will retire from the board in May 2020 after agreeing to remain in her role for a year beyond the Board’s mandatory retirement age.