STAR Alliance has welcomed Theo Panagiotoulias as its new Chief Executive Officer, with the Melbourne native to bring 25 years of international airline and aviation experience to the role. The appointment will become effective within the next few months, after “certain administrative processes and clearances” have been completed.
Prior to joining Star, Panagiotoulias has worked at Hawaiian Airlines as Senior Vice President for Global Sales and Alliances since 2014. His previous experience includes VP and GM (Asia Pacific) at travel technology provider Sabre Corporation, as well as a 15-year stint at American Airlines, where he held several commercial, operational and management positions.
Chairman of the Star Alliance Chief Executive Board and United Airlines CEO Scott Kirby believes Panagiotoulias is the “right person” to lead the alliance, saying, “Theo’s international commercial and airline experience have given him a good understanding of the challenges and opportunities facing our industry today”.
Panagiotoulias takes over from Charlotta Wieland, who has been seconded from SAS – Scandinavian Airlines to serve as Star Alliance’s interim CEO since January 2023. Wieland will now return to SAS, and also rejoin Star Alliance’s Alliance Management Board as the representative for SAS.