If your summer vacation itinerary included flying somewhere, chances are good you traveled on American Airlines; AA carried more than 85 million passengers last year, second-most among all U.S. airlines. But I’ll bet you didn’t know that American — ranked #120 in the most recent Fortune 500 — has a Baylor Bear leading the company.
After six years as chief financial officer (CFO) for American and its parent company, AMR Corporation, Tom Horton, BBA ’83, was named president of American Airlines and AMR earlier this month. At just 49 years old, he is, as the Dallas Morning News put it, “the youngest person in the company’s executive suite.” In between two stints at American/AMR, he also spent three years as CFO at AT&T. In regards to his new role, it’s interesting to note (as did most news accounts) that the last three people to serve as president of American Airlines went on to become the company’s chairman.
Coming from a Baylor family (his brother Steve, BBA ’86, also graduated from BU), Horton has remained connected to his alma mater. He and AMR Chairman Gerard Arpey met with a group of Baylor accounting students in April 2009 to share professional advice, and Horton will again address a Baylor group in November, when he is slated to speak at the Baylor Business Network of Dallas breakfast.
Sic ’em, Tom!