Industry veteran Menke to head Pinnacle as CEO

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Pinnacle Airlines has named veteran airline executive Sean Menke as its new president and CEO.

Menke takes over leadership of the Memphis-based regional airline on 1 July.

"Sean [Menke] is a proven leader who has produced positive results everywhere he has worked," said Donald Breeding, chairman of Pinnacle Airlines Corp. and interim CEO.

"He is a visionary executive with great experience in commercial, operational and financial areas of both mainline and regional airlines. I am confident that Sean will take Pinnacle to a much higher level by working with and leading our strong team of Pinnacle employees."

Menke was once president and CEO of Frontier Airlines. When the Denver-based carrier was acquired by Republic Airways Holdings, Menke became executive vice president and chief marketing officer for Republic.

"I am very excited to be joining Pinnacle during a period of transformation in the airline industry," said Menke. "Pinnacle has proven it is focused on being a leading regional operator in North America. I look forward to working with the employees of Pinnacle as well as our airline partners to provide reliable and efficient airline service. Additionally, our focus will be on profitably growing our business in a way that is beneficial to Pinnacle, our airline partners and our shareholders."

Menke fills the role vacated by retiring Pinnacle president and CEO Phil Trenary, who led the company during the transition to an all jet fleet, rapid expansion and the acquisition of Colgan Air and Mesaba Airlines.

The regional operates in regional partnerships as Delta Connection, United Express and US Airways Express. It has a fleet of 202 regional jets and 88 turboprops that serve 196 destinations on more than 1,650 daily flights.