David Calhoun’s first and last speeches to Boeing shareholders have common themes, four years apart

David Calhoun, president and CEO of The Boeing Co.

May 21, 2024, © Leeham News: David Calhoun was named CEO of The Boeing Co. in December 2019. He assumed the role in January 2020. He had been on the board of directors since 2009. His first annual shareholder meeting as CEO was the 2020 Annual General Meeting , for fiscal year 2019. .

When Calhoun was named CEO, the 737 MAX had been grounded for nine months, following the October 2018 and March 2019 crashes of the Lion Air and Etopian Airlines MAX 8s. There was no end in sight to the immobilization, which ultimately lasted 21 months.

Three months after Calhoun took office, the global COVID-19 pandemic broke out. Global passenger traffic plummeted and so did deliveries of the wide-body aircraft prevalent on international routes. Boeing Commercial Airplanes’ (BCA) revenue and cash flow, already emasculated by the MAX grounding, came under further pressure. Then in October 2020, Boeing suspended all deliveries of new 787s after encountering production flaws. This suspension lasted 20 months.

Following the January 5, 2024 crash involving Alaska Airlines Flight 1282, a 737-9 MAX, Boeing’s safety record, which came under fire in 2018-19, came into question again. Calhoun announced his retirement effective at the end of this year. Other executive and board-level changes were also announced.

Boeing’s Annual General Meeting on May 17, 2024 was Calhoun’s last as CEO. His prepared statement recalled the first one he made as CEO. Some of the themes, particularly those related to security, expressed last week were eerily similar to those articulated in 2020 during his first speech to shareholders.

LNA has put together Calhoun’s first and last speeches to shareholders. we have highlighted common themes between the two conferences, held four years apart.

Boeing CEO David Calhoun’s Shareholder Speeches: (PDF) Remarks on Calhoun’s Shareholders in 2020 and 2024