Ravn Alaska names new CEO, loses mileage sharing agreement with Alaska Airlines

Posted on: July 1st, 2024 | Author: Theo Greenly | Filed under: 830AM KSDP Radio News, Community Window

KUCB / Maggie Nelson┃KSDP / Theo Greenly

Ravn Alaska has a new leader: Southern California businessman Tom Hsieh will take over the regional airline and replace former CEO Rob McKinney. Hsieh is the president of FLOAT Alaska LLC, the parent company of Ravn Alaska and New Pacific Airlines.

McKinney did not respond to several requests for comment.

Tina Hanley, Ravn’s chief commercial officer, said the company doesn’t have an official statement, but confirmed the airline is passing the baton to Hsieh.

Alaska Airlines has suspended its mileage-sharing agreement with Ravn in light of the news. Alaska Airlines Public Affairs Manager Tim Thompson said in an email to KUCB that the decision is the result of Ravn’s recent “transition in leadership.”

The shakeup at Ravn comes about three months after the company laid off over a quarter of its 400 plus workforce. The airline provided few details on the layoffs.

Many Unalaskans have recently expressed concern over the reliability of local air service, citing frequent and unexplained cancellations on the airline, which serves nine communities across Alaska, including Homer, St. Paul, Valdez, and St. Mary’s on the Lower Yukon River.

According to Alaska’s statement, travelers can no longer purchase and redeem Ravn flights on their website, or accrue mileage. Thompson said any travel already booked will be honored. Travelers who purchased flights before July 1 on Alaska’s website will still accrue mileage, as long as they include a mileage plan number.