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Originally published August 31, 2009 at 1:39 PM | Page modified September 1, 2009 at 7:35 AM

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Boeing Commercial chief Carson replaced by defense head Albaugh

Boeing Commercial Airplanes president and chief executive Scott Carson leaving, and the Boeing board has replaced him with Jim Albaugh...

Seattle Times aerospace reporter

Scott Carson's Boeing career:

1973: Joined Boeing as a financial analyst on the B-1 bomber avionics program.

1976: Moved into management.

November 1997: Executive vice president of business resources for the former Boeing Information, Space & Defense Systems.

September 1998: Executive vice president and chief financial officer of Boeing Commercial Airplanes.

November 2000: President of Connexion by Boeing.

December 2004: Vice president of sales at Boeing Commercial.

September 2006: Named president and chief executive officer of Boeing Commercial Airplanes, replacing Alan Mullaly, who became CEO of Ford Motor Company.

August 2009: Boeing announced Carson will retire at year end and will immediately be replaced by Jim Albaugh, previously president and CEO of the Intergrated Defense Systems business..

Source: Seattle Times archives, Boeing executive profiles, The Complete Marquis Who's Who Biographies

Includes information from Seattle Times researcher Miyoko Wolf

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Boeing Commercial Airplanes president and chief executive Scott Carson has stepped down, and the Boeing board has replaced him with Jim Albaugh, head of Boeing's defense division.

Carson, 63, will step down as of Tuesday and will retire from the company at the end of the year, the company said Monday afternoon.

Reacting to the obvious suspicion that Carson was pushed out over the two-year delay in the Dreamliner program, Boeing chairman and chief executive Jim McNerney in a conference call Monday referred several times to "Carson's decision to retire" and insisted that Carson had asked to step down.

Carson himself reiterated that in an internal message to employees Monday and said the timing was spurred by the latest revision of the schedule for the first flight and delivery of the new and much-delayed 787 Dreamliner, announced last week.

"For me this is the end of a journey that began nearly 41 years ago when I joined Boeing for the first time. It has been an incredible journey," Carson said. "Perhaps the most important reason for me was resetting the schedule on the 787. With this baseline in place the new leader will have a clear path forward."

A series of supply chain and technical problems with the new jetliner program have delayed the 787's first flight by about 28 months.

The full Boeing board met last week in Everett and reviewed the new plan to fly the plane by year-end. They also discussed Carson's leaving and approved his replacement.

McNerney said that at the meeting, the board was "very confident in the direction that the new schedule represents and in the management change we are describing here today."

Dennis Muilenburg, one of Albaugh's key lieutenants in the defense division, will succeed Albaugh as president and chief executive of Boeing's Integrated Defense Systems unit.

Albaugh, 59, was born in Richland, Wash., and began his career as a project engineer for space-rocket developer Rocketdyne at the nearby Hanford nuclear reservation.

He is currently based in St. Louis, Mo., but in an internal message to all commercial airplane employees Monday, the new boss of the division headquartered here stressed his Pacific Northwest roots.

"Growing up in eastern Washington, I remember watching the contrails from 707s and B-52s flying overhead. As I grew older, I recognized the great significance of these aircraft. To this day, I believe Boeing did more to change the 20th century than any other company on Earth," Albaugh wrote. "Much of this was done in Puget Sound."

McNerney said Albaugh, an engineer who has no experience with airlines or the marketing side of the commercial airplane business, was chosen for the job because of Boeing's need to focus intensely on fixing the technical problems on the 787.

He said Albaugh's appointment will strengthen technical oversight and renew the company's emphasis on program execution.

"Albaugh represents the deepest and most varied experience we have in running programs, often very technically complex," McNerney said. "Jim is a technical guy himself and has a deep appreciation for the kind of oversight we need to blend into our development efforts here."

Dominic Gates: 206-464-2963 or dgates@seattletimes.com

Copyright © The Seattle Times Company

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