Delta Names Former Six Flags Executive as COO

Delta Airlines Boeing 767-332. | Image by kamilpetran, Shutterstock

Delta Airlines has tapped former Six Flags CEO as the carrier’s new chief operating officer.

Delta Airlines on Tuesday announced Mike Spanos as the new COO and the newest member of the Delta Leadership Committee.

With more than 25 years of executive experience with companies like PepsiCo, Inc. and Six Flags Entertainment, Spanos will carry over his keen business insights to the Atlanta-based carrier in order to help accelerate its growth and operational efficiency.

“The experience and perspective Mike brings to Delta will enhance and accelerate the integration across our operational, customer experience, and technology teams, aligning them to deliver an unsurpassed product and service for our customers and our employees,” Delta Airlines CEO Ed Bastian said in a memo to employees Tuesday, per Delta News Hub.

Spanos will have until June 12, 2023, to get everything in order before his new executive role at Delta officially begins. Once his new role starts, Spanos will report directly to Delta’s CEO.

Executive Vice President and Chief Customer Experience Officer Allison Ausband and Chief of Operations John Laughter will report to Spanos.

“The Delta people are the best in the business,” Spanos said in the announcement on Tuesday. “I’m looking forward to getting started, visiting the operation, and rolling up my sleeves to enable our team to do what they do every day: run the world’s best airline for our customers.”

Prior to being named COO of Delta, Spanos served as president and CEO of Six Flags Entertainment. During his time at Six Flags, Spanos led the brand through a digital and customer-focused transformation and managed to effectively navigate the company through the turbulent COVID-19 pandemic.

In addition to his corporate leadership roles, Spanos also possesses an extensive military background. Spanos is a graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy and a U.S. Marine veteran who was deployed in Desert Storm. Spanos has also served as a senior instructor at the Field Artillery Officer Basic Course.

The executive roles that Spanos had at PepsiCo and the Pepsi Bottling Group include the following:


  • Regional executive roles across the U.S., Turkey, China, Asia, the Middle East, and North Africa.
  • President and CEO titles at PepsiCo International sectors.
  • Chief Customer Officer of Pepsi Beverages North America.
  • Leading sales and operations across U.S. and international locations for Pepsi Bottling Group.

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