Make us your home page

Tampa International Airport CEO Lopano shakes up top management

The new boss at Tampa International unveiled a sweeping shakeup in the airport's top management on Wednesday.

CEO Joe Lopano inherited a organization in which 13 senior executives directly reported to him. Under the new, flatter structure, he will have 10 direct reports.

His top lieutenants will be six vice presidents — three from outside Tampa International and three current executives: Ed Cooley (operations), Al Illustrato Jr. (facilities/customer services) and Gigi Rechel (general counsel, corporate affairs and real estate). New vice presidents will oversee marketing, finance/administration and business planning.

The job titles mirror those in corporate business, said Lopano, who identifies himself as the airport's CEO instead of executive director. The changes reinforce his focus on sustaining TIA's high-quality customer service and being "more competitive in a very competitive business," he said.

The reorganization won't require a net increase in airport positions or layoffs of any current employees, Lopano said.

Salaries of the new vice presidents will be more than offset by the elimination of positions vacant through resignations, including those of John Wheat, former chief operating officer, and Lou Russo, former senior director of planning and development.

The reorganization will save Tampa International $100,000 during the fiscal year that ends Sept. 30. That's a fraction of executive salaries, "but it's in the right direction," Lopano said.

Steve Huettel can be reached at or (727) 893-8128.

Tampa International Airport CEO Lopano shakes up top management 02/23/11 [Last modified: Wednesday, February 23, 2011 9:12pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Appointments at the Tampa Metropolitan Area YMCA and the Straz Center highlight this week's Tampa Bay business Movers & Shakers



    The Tampa Metropolitan Area YMCA has named Matt Mitchell its new chief executive officer, effective Oct. 16. Selected by the Y's CEO Search Committee following a five-month search, Mitchell will succeed Tom Looby, who is retiring. Looby has served the Y Movement for 37 years, the past 10 …

    The Tampa Metropolitan Area YMCA has named Matt Mitchell as its new Chief Executive Officer. [Handout photo]
  2. Rep. Larry Ahern gets roughed up by Clearwater City Council

    State Roundup

    It seemed innocuous enough: an "end of session report" from state Rep. Larry Ahern, R-Seminole, to the Clearwater City Council.

    Then Ahern got taken to the woodshed.

    Rep. Larry Ahern is vying for a seat on the Pinellas commission.
  3. There's a bar in Tampa where you can roller skate and eat sushi

    Food & Dining

    Roller skating, it's not just for kids birthday parties and the 1970s anymore.

    The exterior of Pattinis features this mural by Art Aliens! [Pattinis South Tampa via Facebook]
  4. Lockdown: Florida's 97,000 prison inmates confined through weekend

    State Roundup

    All of Florida's 97,000 state prison inmates are on lockdown — and will remain confined to their dorms at least through the weekend — in response to unspecified threats about possible uprisings, officials from the Florida Department of Corrections confirmed Thursday.

    Blackwater River Correctional Facility. [Florida Department of Corrections]
  5. Carnival announces five more cruises from Tampa to Cuba


    TAMPA — Carnival Cruise Line is adding five more cruises from Tampa to Cuba in 2018, Port Tampa Bay announced Thursday.

      Carnival Cruise Line announced additional cruises to  Cuba. Pictured is its Paradise cruise ship departing on its inaugural voyage to Cuba from Tampa. | [MONICA HERNDON | Times]