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American Airlines rotates cargo chief again

Startup CMA CGM Air Cargo names COO

American Airlines Cargo has named Greg Schwendinger as president. (Photo: Jim Allen/FreiightWaves)

(UPDATED: 10:20 A.M. EST)

American Airlines has rehired finance executive Greg Schwendinger as president of cargo, replacing Jessica Taylor, who was moved in late May to lead the company’s Integrated Operations Control Center.

The cargo division at American Airlines (NASDAQ: AAL) is a stepping stone for executives moving up the corporate ladder. Presidents typically rotate out within about two years. Taylor took over American Airlines Cargo in July 2020.

Schwendinger spent more than 15 years at American before leaving at the end of 2020 to head the finance department at AccentCare, a health care services provider.

His most recent position at American was vice president of financial planning and analysis. He spent most of his time at the company in financial planning and investor relations roles.

Reporting to Schwendinger will be Roger Samways, vice president of commercial; Sam Mendenhall, vice president of operations; and Eric Mathieu, managing director of customer experience.

American Airlines Cargo posted record revenue of $1.3 billion last year behind ultra-strong market conditions created by the pandemic that gave cargo airlines pricing power. The carrier’s revenue during the first half was $692 million and is on track to easily beat sales in 2019.

The Integrated Operations Control Center is the central nervous system of the airline’s global network, responsible for flight dispatch, crew, scheduling, air traffic control, weight-and-balance planning, meteorology, maintenance operation control and customer service. 

CMA CGM Air Cargo

In related news, CMA CGM Air Cargo on Monday named Benoît Schäfer as COO. He spent the past five years as executive vice president of operations and maintenance at Air Austral, a small French passenger airline based a Reunion Island in the Indian Ocean.

CMA CGM launched operations in early 2021 as France’s first all-cargo airline. It is part of the CMA CGM Group of ocean shipping and logistics companies.

Click here for more FreightWaves/American Shipper stories by Eric Kulisch.

Write to Eric at [email protected]


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Eric Kulisch

Eric is the Supply Chain and Air Cargo Editor at FreightWaves. An award-winning business journalist with extensive experience covering the logistics sector, Eric spent nearly two years as the Washington, D.C., correspondent for Automotive News, where he focused on regulatory and policy issues surrounding autonomous vehicles, mobility, fuel economy and safety. He has won two regional Gold Medals and a Silver Medal from the American Society of Business Publication Editors for government and trade coverage, and news analysis. He was voted best for feature writing and commentary in the Trade/Newsletter category by the D.C. Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists. In December 2022, he was voted runner up for Air Cargo Journalist by the Seahorse Freight Association. As associate editor at American Shipper Magazine for more than a decade, he wrote about trade, freight transportation and supply chains. Eric is based in Portland, Oregon. He can be reached for comments and tips at [email protected]