Amtran plans to begin search for new CEO

Amtran’s board plans to conduct a search for a new CEO, who would start at the beginning of next year, despite an understanding in recent months that an executive already on staff is being groomed to take the job after the current general manager retires.

The search plan came out of an executive session in December and will involve advertisements in the Mirror and a trade publication, said General Manager Eric Wolf, whose deputy Josh Baker has been designated unofficially as Wolf’s likely successor.

The board felt it would be best to conduct an open search, with an invitation to internal and external candidates, given Amtran’s status as a government agency, Wolf said.

Baker will definitely be a candidate, and should have an excellent chance of getting the job, according to Wolf.

“(But) as a public authority, we need to be transparent,” Wolf said. “(The board doesn’t) want it to appear that the fix is in.”

A timeline discussed at Wednesday’s meeting calls for Wolf to have submitted a resignation letter this month, with an effective date of Dec. 31, 2022; for a classified ad to appear in the Mirror at the end of this month; for another classified to appear in “Passenger Transport” in early February; for applications to be submitted by early March; for those to be reviewed throughout most of March and for an announcement of “next steps” at the board meeting in late March.

The new CEO would start Jan. 1, 2023.

Wolf doesn’t know whether the process will end up being a full-fledged search, complete with applicant interviews, he said.

The decisions that come out of the March board meeting may answer that question, he said.

“It’s the proper thing to do,” said board member Dick Moran of the advertising plan.

It might make sense to arrange for an “overlap” of service time, if the board picks an external candidate, said board member Bruce Kelley.

A month overlap ought to be the minimum in that case, said board member Denny Stewart.

Mirror Staff Writer William Kibler is at 814-949-7038.


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