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The CEO of American Airlines, a major presence at Charlotte's airport, is stepping down

American Airlines Group says Doug Parker will retire as CEO of Charlotte’s largest air carrier on March 31. Robert Isom, currently president of American, will succeed him. In a company video, Parker says Isom is the right person for the job, calling him "truly an inspired leader and a skilled operator with global experience."

Julie Rose
Doug Parker is seen in an undated file photo.

"We prepared for this leadership succession for several years and indeed, were it not for the pandemic this transition would likely have occurred even sooner," Parker said in the video. "But we still have work to do. With our industry and our airline well on the way to recovery, I’m confident that now is the right time for this transition."

Isom also will join the airline’s board of directors on that same date, and Parker will continue to serve as chair of American’s board. Before it merged with American Airlines in 2013, the company says, Parker guided U.S. Airways to record revenue growth and operational performance above most other large airlines.

Charlotte Douglas International Airport is American’s second-largest hub after Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport.

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Woody is a Charlotte native who came to WFAE from the world of NASCAR where he was host of NASCAR Today for MRN Radio as well as a pit reporter, turn announcer and host of the NASCAR Live pre race show for Cup Series races. Before that, he was a news anchor at WBT radio in Charlotte, a traffic reporter, editor of The Charlotte Observer’s University City Magazine, News/Sports Director at WEGO-AM in Concord and a Swiss Army knife in local cable television. His first job after graduating from Appalachian State University was news reporter at The Daily Independent in Kannapolis. Along the way he’s covered everything from murder trials and a national political convention to high school sports and minor league baseball.