Doug Parker: Man on a Merger Mission

Old Sep 18, 05, 10:16 am
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Post Doug Parker: Man on a Merger Mission

From today's Arizona Republic:

Man on a merger mission
Caffeine, catnaps fueling AmWest CEO's frenzied quest

Dawn Gilbertson
The Arizona Republic

When he returned to his hotel room late Wednesday after dinner with Pittsburgh power brokers, Doug Parker turned on the Arizona Diamondbacks game and set his alarm for 5:30 a.m.

The CEO of America West Airlines wanted to get up early to work off the three-course meal and mouthwatering macaroons they served at the historic Duquesne Club.

The buzzer went off, but Parker didn't lace up his white-and-orange Saucony running shoes. He crawled back into bed for an hour.

Parker can be excused for hitting the snooze button. America West's pending merger with US Airways has turned him into a traveling salesman with a singular mission: Pitching the benefits of the deal.

The 43-year-old executive, who usually tries to be away from home no more than a few times a month for a night or two at most, has crisscrossed the country this summer to meet with employees, business and political leaders, analysts and the media - sometimes in one trip.

Last week saw him jetting from Tempe to New York City to Pittsburgh and back between Tuesday afternoon and Thursday night.

He's seen enough in-flight movies to give Monster-in-Law more stars than XXX: State of the Union and has a new appreciation for America West's frequent fliers.

Parker has had cause to run non-stop. He engineered the merger and will lead the new US Airways, a company with more than double the employees of America West and close to five times the annual revenue. It is the biggest bet of his career, a merger that promises to change forever what is normal for Parker. . .(More)
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Old Sep 18, 05, 3:32 pm
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Originally Posted by AZ Travels the World
From today's Arizona Republic
I read the article and laughed my head off. It demonstrates that Parker has a lot easier life than most of us here on FlyerTalk. His worst week sounds like my easiest week!
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Old Sep 18, 05, 3:58 pm
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I found it enlightening. I'd be curious to hear his personal impressions of his thoughts after travelling on US and HP planes between so many varying markets. Food service, pen marks, IFE(or lack of), etc.

It's also interesting that in his 4 year career as CEO, he never travelled more than 1-2 times per month. Now that he has a large contingency on the East coast, I suspect that will change some.
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Old Sep 18, 05, 5:03 pm
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Great article.

That was 1-2 times away from home at night. That is easier when your region is not as big. I expect that will change.

Nice to see the PIT business learders asking for Europe flights.

Also nice to see he took all scheduled flights - and on US/HP.
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Old Sep 18, 05, 7:04 pm
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Yes I hope more PIT service comes back. Im from ORD so a short hop to PIT and the on to my final destination would be nice even if it ment Europe.

Just a quick question. I never flown thru PIT is PIT like PHL with all the bad serive and rude people and delayed flights? Im guessing no since so many people want more of PIT back!
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Old Sep 18, 05, 7:09 pm
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What a great, refreshing article!
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Old Sep 18, 05, 8:19 pm
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Originally Posted by kinglobjaw
Yes I hope more PIT service comes back. Im from ORD so a short hop to PIT and the on to my final destination would be nice even if it ment Europe.

Just a quick question. I never flown thru PIT is PIT like PHL with all the bad serive and rude people and delayed flights? Im guessing no since so many people want more of PIT back!

PIT is more the opposite of PHL. Wide open space, not congested (terminal or taxiways) and a majority of the workers care very much about doing a great job! jmtcw as a furloghed USAIRWAYS employee who still flies every weekend.
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Old Sep 18, 05, 9:28 pm
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Ah, the Arizona Repugnant, that pillar of modern journalism. Home town boy makes good...and gets to sleep in his own bed 27 nights a month. Welcome to USAirways, and the eastern half of the country. That will fix those sleeping habits....yawn
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Old Sep 19, 05, 3:18 am
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Originally Posted by kinglobjaw
Yes I hope more PIT service comes back. Im from ORD so a short hop to PIT and the on to my final destination would be nice even if it ment Europe.

Just a quick question. I never flown thru PIT is PIT like PHL with all the bad serive and rude people and delayed flights? Im guessing no since so many people want more of PIT back!

Let's just say they are night and day. PIT is more like CLT. Rarely encounter operational problems/delays/baggage issues etc. and the US employees for the most part are excellent. Non-US airport staff at PIT are generally friendly and efficient too. Even the TSA PHL....well, you know the story.
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