American's No. 2 executive departs for United Airlines

Small BusinessAssociated Press

The president and No. 2 executive at American Airlines is leaving to take the same job with rival United Airlines.

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United Continental Holdings Inc. said Monday that Scott Kirby has been named president and will oversee operations, sales and other duties.

Kirby, 49, was often seen as a likely successor to American Airlines CEO Doug Parker.

Instead, he will add airline-industry expertise to United's management. The Chicago-based airline is led by Oscar Munoz, a longtime railroad executive who became CEO less than a year ago.

American Airlines Group Inc., based in Fort Worth, Texas, will replace Kirby by promoting chief operating officer Robert Isom.