Air Transport World

The friendly skies lose a gentleman.

In an era that appears to place little value on old-fashioned virtues, Gerald Greenwald, who retired last month after five years as chairman and CEO of United Airlines, above all was a gentleman. Courteous and well-spoken and a natty dresser to boot, Greenwald was a refreshing throwback to an earlier age.

Recruited to lead the 1994 leveraged buyout of United following a successful career in the automobile industry--he was Lee lacocca's right hand for many years--Greenwald rewarded the confidence of his backers by bringing stability and relative peace to an airline that had been beset by labor/management turbulence since the 1985 pilots' strike. He also showed himself to be a very quick study of the airline industry, guiding United into the pacesetting Star Alliance and taking a lead role in smoothing the industry's often touchy relationship with Washington. …

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