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Delta Air Lines Promotes Three Long Time Employees To Key Customer Service, Marketing Positions


Delta Air Lines has announced the promotion of three company veterans to key customer service and marketing positions to support the airline’s efforts to enhance its position as an industry leader in customer service and to boost its global brand presence.
Joanne Smith, currently vice president – Marketing, has been promoted to senior vice president – In-Flight Service and Global Product Development, following the recent retirement announcement of 34-year Delta veteran Paulette Corbin. In this expanded role, she will be responsible for integrating the personalized service of flight attendants with a global product strategy that differentiates Delta from its competitors.
Tim Mapes, currently managing director – Marketing and Cultural Transformation, has been promoted to vice president – Marketing, filling the vacancy left by Smith; and
Sandy Gordon, currently managing director – In-Flight Service, has been promoted to vice president – In-Flight Service Operations and Training, recognizing Delta’s increased focus on the onboard experience as a key driver of customer satisfaction.
“A fundamental part of Delta’s transformation is to maintain the heritage of service and pride that have made our company great for generations,” said Chief Operating Officer Jim Whitehurst. “The promotion of three well-known and versatile leaders to key customer service and marketing posts is another step in ensuring we have the right leaders in the right places to reach our goal of being truly preferred by our customers.”

Smith, Mapes and Gordon have a proven track record of results at Delta, with more than 35 years of combined service at the company.

Smith, 48, joined Delta in 2003 as vice president of marketing and customers for Song, the airline’s former low-fare subsidiary. Smith was responsible for launching Song in April 2003 as a unique and highly differentiated service, including developing and implementing Song’s award-winning brand and product, as well as hiring in-flight and customer service staff. Smith was promoted to president of Song before becoming vice president of Marketing for Delta in 2006. Prior to joining Delta, Smith served in senior marketing and planning positions at DHL Airways, Smartware Systems and, in addition to serving as a flight attendant after graduating from California Polytechnic State University in 1982.

Mapes, 42, joined Delta in 1992 as manager of international advertising and promotion after working with Delta’s ad agency, BBDO. During his 15 years at Delta, Mapes has led some of the company’s most innovative programs, including low-fare services Song and Delta Express, and most recently leading efforts to transform Delta’s internal culture to be more open and direct. Mapes is a leader in the marketing field, having recently been inducted to the Hall of Achievement by the American Advertising Federation, recognized as one of the “top innovative marketers” by Advertising Age, and named one of Marketing’s “Rising Stars” by Baurne & Mercer and Forbes magazine. Mapes is a graduate of the University of Georgia.

Gordon, 38, assumes her new position after more than 17 years at Delta. A graduate of Hampton University, Gordon began her career in 1990 as an Atlanta-based flight attendant before advancing through several key leadership positions in In-Flight Service. Most recently, Gordon has held responsibility for the day-to-day service delivery of more than 10,000 Delta flight attendants, field service managers, operational specialists and base directors.


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