In January Hector Adler got bumped up to Senior Vice President at American… in advance of retirement. I wrote at the time,
American’s uniform disaster VP Hector Adler gets bumped up to Senior VP. He retires next year. He ‘retired’ from Northwest Airlines as Vice President of Inflight Services in 2005 as well. Smart move, blame the uniforms flight attendants say are making them sick on the guy headed out the door.
Now Fernand Fernandez, Vice President of Marketing, is leaving.
Fern Fernandez Introducing New Meals for American Airlines Domestic Service, June 2015
Like Adler, Fern Fernandez was also closely associated with the airline’s uniforms, which thousands of flight attendants and now hundreds of pilots have reported make them sick although the airline says that testing with the manufacturer reveals no problems. Pilots now want a recall of the uniforms.
The airline says Fern’s departure “is not related to our uniforms and that his contributions to the company have been meaningful and valuable.” Without a doubt he has made his contributions, and I’ve always much liked him as well.
However he was also deeply involved in last year’s ‘greatest flyers’ ad campaign which was roundly mocked because it seemed to send the message that if you’re a great flyer, you should put up with whatever inconveniences or poor product the airline decides to throw at you.
Fern came over to American from US Airways where he oversaw marketing and loyalty. Russ Hinckley reported up to him at Dividend Miles, which is a reversal of sorts since Fern worked for Russ at Northwest. (After the merger with American, Russ left to launch Copa ConnectMiles.)
Kurt Stache, Senior Vice President of Marketing and Loyalty and a former President of AAdvantage, says they’re looking for a replacement “who will continue to help us remain focused on engaging our internal and external customers.” Whatever that means.