Kelly Ison

Kelly Ison

Summary

Vice President of Operations

P&L / Startups & Turnarounds / International / Contract Negotiations / Labor Relations Strategic Planning / Reorganization / Cost Reduction / Acquisitions & Divestitures / Budgets

Combining strong operations, financial and strategic planning skills, I have been able to lead organizations in various high pressure and rapidly changing situations.I possess a solid track record as an accomplished labor negotiator and in delivering effective solutions to business challenges across very diverse environments.

  • Forging solutions to complex problems between employees and management
  • Leading organizations in both startup and turnaround situations
  • Establishing effective communication strategies for all stakeholders
  • Designing and implementing successful restructuring/reorganization plans
  • Building and directing highly professional teams to greater success

I have been described as being very focused on the task at hand even in crisis situations, relating to individuals at all levels, and being able to explain complex issues in simple terms.I received my MS in Business Management from the London Business School (Sloan Fellowship) and a BS in Labor Studies from the National Labor College.

Selected Accomplishments

Crafted effective contract negotiating and communications strategy.Air carrier client had been in contract negotiations for two years without significant progress.Designed and implemented negotiating strategy and communications campaign, including new channels of internal/external messages.Repaired management credibility and employee morale.Client was able to increase operational performance and product quality.

Turned around under-performing operation, leading to successful divestiture.Tomcat Global had two European subsidiaries that were performing poorly and had made multiple attempts to address problems.Defined annual/monthly sales goals for each department.Stabilized operations and instituted new strategic direction.

Played key role in designing and implementing reorganization plan.US Airways entered bankruptcy during period of economic turmoil, energy price increases and demand reduction.Worked with various parties to convince that reorganization was preferable to liquidation, and with financial, trade, and labor to arrange emergence.

Directed successful design and launch of new startup operation.Charged with forming US Airways cross-functional team to design and launch new airline subsidiary.Studied industry and competitors to establish benchmarks.Determined best product attributes and positioning.Achieved flawless launch with MetroJet.

Work History

Work History

Other Significant Professional Experience
  • Guest Lecturer on Leadership, Industrial Relations Strategy, Communications, Negotiations, and Railway Labor Act, London Business School and University of Westminster, London, Embry Riddle Aeronautical University, and Duquesne University, USA.
  • Board Member: Embry Riddle’s College of Business advisory board.
  • Board Member: Justin Mychals Child Cancer Foundation.
  • International consulting experience in areas of finance, turnarounds, corporate culture, and strategy.

-Projects include macro economic factors in Argentina; expansion and competition for Majestic Wine, UK; European product strategy and extension for Milliken & Company, UK; turnaround and transformation strategy for Albany Rental, UK; turnaround advice for Brilliant Stages, UK; finance and sale for Tomcat Global, US; and finance for Loven Ready Mix, US.

  • Airline pilot with more than 12,000 hours of flight time.

Consultant

Air Transport Company

2008 – Present

Project: Labor Relations, Air Transport Company, US

Consultant

Contracted to advise CEO and COO on labor matters regarding Railway Labor Act negotiations and corporate transformation.Overarching issue is required corporate cultural repair.

2007 – Present

Project: Various Mining and Manufacturing Companies, US

Consultant

Contracted to implement an asset and/or company disposition strategy.Developing financial information and sales strategy, along with conducting a worldwide search for financing and buyers.

2002 - Present

Majority Owner of Family Business

Turned the business around by focusing on the main business, repairing the damaged service reputation, reducing costs, and disposing of non-strategic assets.The company is now profitable.

Feb 2004 - Dec 2006

President Europe

http://www.tomcatglobal.com

Charged with transforming two underperforming subsidiaries and developing and implementing a European expansion strategy, consisting of acquiring low cost manufacturing capability along with increasing commercial presence.The strategy required simultaneously pursuing consolidation of the industry through both alliances and acquisitions.At the parent level, responsible for corporate strategy, financial analysis and forecasting, and corporate development.The transformation culminated in the sale of the company.

Mar 1994 - Sep 2003

Chairman, Negotiating Committee

US Airways Group, Inc., Air Line Pilots Association

Led all contract and restructuring negotiations for US Airways pilots.Directed and coordinated internal departments, attorneys, investment bankers, advisors, and analysts.Responsible for team building, direct negotiations, and valuations in addition to lobbying, research, and communication efforts.

  • July 2002 - Restructured the capital structure of US Airways in addition to employee pay, benefits, and work rules. Achieved $1.37 billion savings and 20% equity ownership for the pilots.Reorganized governance structure, gaining Board of Directors seats for employees.
  • Negotiated provisions to bring US Airways into the Star Alliance and to reconfigure the route network around more than 450 regional jets.
  • December 2002 - Restructured additional pay, insurance, and work rules worth $178 million.
  • March 2003 - Delivered a replacement pension plan, worth close to $900 million to approximate terminated benefits, in compliance with cash flow and regulatory restrictions, working directly with top management, the bankruptcy court, and the US Pension Benefits Guarantee Corporation.
  • Provided finance and strategy advice to the ALPA member of the US Airways Board of Directors.
  • Negotiated several working agreements between US Airways and its pilots, including restructuring the airline in 1994 as well as the 1997 agreement that led to the airline’s purchase of up to 430 Airbus aircraft.
2002 - 2003

Executive Committee, Plan of Reorganization Review

Official Committe of Unsecured Creditors - US Airways

Sole US Airways representative chosen by the U.S. Bankruptcy Court as a member of the Creditors Committee.Elected to Executive Committee and Plan of Reorganization Review Committee.The Committee negotiated for the creditors in the US Airways bankruptcy proceedings.

  • Successfully reorganized US Airways from nearly $11 billion in liabilities with $560 million liquidity to $7.5 billion in liabilities and more than $1.4 billion liquidity.
  • Delivered 10.5% equity in addition to future business for Creditors.
1999 - 2000

Chairman, Regional Jet Task Force

http://www.USAirways.com

The Regional Jet Task Force was a joint US Airways – ALPA group commissioned to study competitive and labor issues surrounding the use of regional jets in the network carrier sector of the US airline industry.The Task Force recommended actions to both parties.

  • The Regional Jet Task Force report was used as a basis for negotiating a series of agreements promoting the use of regional jets in the US Airways route network.
1997 - 1999

Team Leader, MetroJet Task Force

http://www.USAirways.com

One of four team leaders for the MetroJet Task Force, a cross-section team of 25 US Airways employees charged with designing and implementing MetroJet, a low fare airline subsidiary of US Airways.Responsible for communications, team building, motivation, and culture.Designed and implemented a mandatory cross-departmental training and team building program for every employee involved in the MetroJet operation.

  • MetroJet achieved its target of a flawless start up.
  • MetroJet training was the highest rated program within US Airways, as measured by standardized participant evaluations.

Skills

Skills

Senior Management

Restructuring and Difficult situations

Labor Negotiator

Education

Education

M.Sc. Business Management

http://www.London.edu

London Business School, London, UK

M.Sc. in Business Management (Sloan Fellowship)