Philippine Airlines (PAL) has confirmed the appointment of Gilbert F. Santa Maria as the flag carrier’s new president and chief operating officer. The 15-man PAL board unanimously approved Santa Maria – who was a handpicked nominee of PAL chairman and CEO Lucio C. Tan. Santa Maria succeeds Jaime Bautista, who retired in June. The new airline president has three decades of executive management and leadership experience gained across multiple industries in companies around the world. However, none in the aviation industry.

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