MIAMI – Alaska Airlines Group announced today that former commercial and military Pilot Daniel Elwell will serve on the board of directors, effective immediately. Elwell will also join the boards of directors of Alaska Airlines (AS) and Horizon Air (QX).

AS Boeing 737MAX Photo: Daniel Gorun/Airways

Who is Daniel Elwell?


Daniel Elwell was Deputy and Deputy Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration from June 2017 to November 2020, where he was responsible for the safety and efficiency of the world’s largest aerospace system, which operates more than 50,000 flights at the day.

Elwell was also overseeing the FAA’s multi-billion dollar NextGen air traffic control modernization program to accelerate the shift from ground radar to cutting-edge satellite technology with operational, community and environmental benefits.

Daniel Elwell. Photo: Wiki Commons

From 2013-2015, as Senior Vice President for Safety, Security and Operations at Airlines for America (A4A), Elwell was responsible for leading the advancement of commercial aviation safety and security excellence for major U.S. air carriers. Prior to A4A, Elwell was Vice President of the Aerospace Industries Association (AIA) from 2008-2013 where he represented civil aerospace manufacturers and led policy development and advocacy for the civil aerospace manufacturing interests.

Elwell was a commercial pilot for 16 years with American Airlines, flying DC-10, MD-80, and Boeing 757 and 767 aircraft. While maintaining his proficiency as an MD-80 captain, he served as Managing Director for International and Government Affairs at American Airlines. Elwell earned his pilot wings at Williams Air Force Base in Arizona after graduating from the U.S. Air Force Academy with a Bachelor of Science degree in International Affairs.

As a lieutenant colonel, he retired from military service as a Command Pilot with more than 6,000 hours combined civilian and military flight time in the U.S. Air Force and U.S. Air Force Reserve, including combat service during Operation Desert Storm.

AS Boeing 737-800NG Photo: Kochan Kleps/AW

Statement from Alaska Airlines CEO


Brad Tilden, Alaska Air Group Chair and CEO, said, “We are thrilled to have someone with Dan’s expertise and background in the airline and aviation industry join our board. He has been a pilot, public servant, and innovator to advance aviation safety in our country – a value we hold dear.”

“At a both critical and exciting time in our industry, Dan clearly understands the challenges and opportunities ahead, and we welcome his trusted perspective and ideas.”


Featured image: AS Boeing 737MAX. Photo: Nick Sheeder/Airways