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Head of Boeing’s 737 Max Retires, but the Program Doesn’t

Head of Boeing’s 737 Max Retires, but the Program Doesn’t
Jeff Edwards

Internal documents reveal that Eric Lindblad, who helped navigate the beleaguered 737 MAX program through troubled waters, will step down from the position he has held since August of 2018. Boeing says Lindblad will stay onboard to help show his successor, Mark Jenks, the ropes before officially retiring from the company.

Boeing has confirmed that the chief of its troubled 737 MAX program will step down some time after helping his successor to transition into the role. Eric Lindblad has led the section since August of 2018 and has spearheaded the aviation giant’s efforts to regain regulatory certification for the currently grounded 737 MAX to resume service. Lindblad’s retirement is the first high-profile management change since questions began to arise about Boeing’s, some say rushed, development process for the next generation 737 aircraft following back-to-back air disasters.

Although Boeing initially took a defiant stance in the wake of the twin disasters, insisting that there were no serious safety issues with the planes, company officials have taken a much more conciliatory tone in recent months. In July, the aircraft manufacturer issued a rare apology and announced the founding of a $100,000,000 victims’ relief fund for those impacted by the tragedies.

“We at Boeing are sorry for the tragic loss of lives in both of these accidents and these lives lost will continue to weigh heavily on our hearts and on our minds for years to come,” Boeing Chairman/President/CEO Dennis Muilenburg said in a July 3rd statement announcing the charitable trust. “The families and loved ones of those on board have our deepest sympathies, and we hope this initial outreach can help bring them comfort. We know every person who steps aboard one of our airplanes places their trust in us. We are focused on re-earning that trust and confidence from our customers and the flying public in the months ahead.”

There is no indication that Lindblad’s departure is in any way related to the 737 MAX program’s continuing struggle to regain airworthiness certification. In fact, Commercial Airplanes President Kevin McAllister praised Lindblad in an internal company memo, first obtained by the Mail, announcing his departure.

“I am grateful to Eric Lindblad for his strong leadership and tireless drive over the past 12 months leading the 737 program, as he has navigated some of the most difficult challenges our company has ever faced,” McAllister wrote. “He shared with me his desire to retire last year, and we will now begin to embark on a thoughtful and seamless transition plan.”

Effective immediately, VP Mark Jenks, who joined the company in 1983, has been named the new head of the 737 program. VP Mike Sinnett is taking over Jenks’s prior position as the head of New Mid-Market Aircraft (NMA).


[Featured Image: Boeing]

View Comments (5)


  1. dogcanyon

    July 30, 2019 at 8:59 am

    “In July, the aircraft manufacturer issued a rare apology and announced the founding of a $100 victims’ relief fund for those impacted by the tragedies.”
    Um, I think the figure is $100 million.

  2. amanuensis


    July 30, 2019 at 3:18 pm

    No, $100 is accurate. That’s what is left of the $100 million after the attorneys got their $99,999,900 cut.

  3. rowingman

    July 31, 2019 at 7:46 am

    In the meantime the CEO makes $2M/month, while erasing over $5bn in shareholder value. Where is the Boeing Board of Directors?? I don’t know why, but I used to think this was a decent company. Their history of bribery and payoffs on the Air Force tanker project, the 737Max, failed border automation project, late delivery of the 737 sub hunter, late delivery of the 767 tanker, etc.

    Where is the Boeing BOD? I see years of shareholder lawsuits.

  4. thebug622

    July 31, 2019 at 9:51 am

    Money is not enough of a punishment Boeing will quickly recover any cash by raising the cost of its product,but they will listen if Boeing executives are led out handcuffed and sentenced to jail terms

  5. edgewood49

    August 4, 2019 at 3:48 pm

    The fact is BA will not be able to raise their prices fast enough the sad bunch of executives have forever tarnished the reputation of Boeing for one, AB has been killing the earnings reports since the Max has grounded and will continue to, their problem now is production! The 777x is now delayed into 2020 due to engine issues which will force others to look to AB no doubt. Hundreds are now being laid off due to the Max grounding and more coming. The US GDP has and will continue to take a hit, all for what ? Greed at Boeing to get the damn plane flying and beat AB.

    The Boeing can’t even make the 767 a tried and true airframe convert to a tanker in time, they had to pull strings with DOD I think we should have bought the AB version, now maybe Boeing will get AB to private label planes for them ! Then we all win

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