Long-time chief of US regional carrier ExpressJet Jim Ream is moving to American Airlines 1 January to become the carrier's VP of Maintenance and Engineering.

Ream succeeds Carmine Romano, who is retiring after a 41-year career with American. New responsibilities Ream will undertake include overseeing operations at American's repair and modification bases in Fort Worth, Texas, Tulsa, Oklahoma and Kansas City, Missouri.

It is a return to American for Ream, who worked for the carrier between 1987 and 1995. For the last eight years he has been at the helm of ExpressJet.

Ream began his carrier as a US Army helicopter mechanic and crew chief, and in addition to his time at American he spent seven years at Continental, serving as President and COO of Continental Express before it was spun off into a separate business.

"While Carmine's shoes will be hard to fill, we are pleased to have an executive of Jim Ream's caliber returning to our team," says American CEO Gerard Arpey.

ExpressJet, meanwhile, has appointed board member Patrick Kelly as interim CEO.

Source: Air Transport Intelligence news