SkyWest, Inc.’s executive leadership team is focused on delivering the best operational performance in the industry and taking good care of the nearly 20,000 aviation professionals who work at SkyWest.
President and Chief Executive Officer of SkyWest, Inc.
Russell "Chip" Childs is CEO & President of SkyWest, Inc. He was named CEO and nominated to the board of directors in January 2016 and has served as President of the entity since 2014.
Since joining the company, Chip has led SkyWest’s evolution as a part of the world’s largest regional airline alliance. SkyWest was named one of Fortune’s Best Companies to Work For in 2015, as well as Regional Airline of the Year by Air Transport World for the third time in 2014. In recent years, SkyWest has secured key dual-class fleet flying agreements with major airline partners Delta, United, American and Alaska Airlines, redefined its strategic objectives, and elevated financial and operating performance at the company’s wholly-owned entities, SkyWest Airlines and ExpressJet Airlines.
Chip has guided the company through some of the industry’s most challenging times while maintaining a focus on the long-term stability and success of the company and its 17,000 employees. His commitment to SkyWest’s people, coupled with his management of partner carrier relationships, financial planning and internal controls have helped ensure SkyWest is best positioned in one of the most highly competitive segments of the industry. His value-based, innovative approach continues to successfully create opportunity and provide value for SkyWest stakeholders.
Chip joined SkyWest in 2001 as vice president – controller, and served as President and COO of SkyWest Airlines from 2007-2014. He serves as a Director on the Salt Lake City Branch of the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco. He earned his bachelor's degree in economics and master's degree in accounting from Brigham Young University. He and his wife Jennifer have three sons and a daughter.
Robert J. Simmons
Chief Financial Officer of SkyWest, Inc.
Robert Simmons was named SkyWest, Inc. Chief Financial Officer in 2015. In this position, he oversees all financial controls, capital management, financing and accounting processes for the holding company.
Prior to joining SkyWest, Robert had extensive background in corporate finance and public companies, including Iomega, Oracle, eTrade Financial and Bank of America Corp. He has served on various boards and as chairman and board member of the Association for Financial Professionals. He has been interviewed as a financial expert in various print and broadcast media, and he is proficient in Italian.
Robert holds a bachelor’s degree in international business from Brigham Young University and an MBA from the Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University. He resides in Utah and has four children.
Chief Commercial Officer of SkyWest, Inc.
Wade Steel joined the SkyWest Airlines leadership team in 2007 and served as Vice President – Controller of SkyWest Airlines from 2011-2014. He was named Executive Vice President of SkyWest, Inc. in 2014 before becoming the Chief Commercial Officer. In this position, he oversees all contract management, and financial planning and analysis for the holding company.
Prior to his time at SkyWest, Wade spent seven years in public accounting, providing audit and advisory services to companies in the transportation, manufacturing, software and financial services industries. Wade is a certified public accountant with bachelor's and master's degrees in accounting from Brigham Young University. He is also a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants.
Chief Operating Officer of SkyWest Airlines
Mike Thompson is the Chief Operating Officer at SkyWest Airlines and is responsible for overseeing its extensive day-to-day operations and safety performance.
Mike joined SkyWest as executive operational analyst in 2001. In that role, he provided analytical support for operations and was the driving force in creating "Performance Rewards," a monetary reward program for SkyWest employees. In 2005 he was named VP of Market Development where he oversaw SkyWest’s pro-rate operation and schedule coordination with major partners.
As COO, Mike oversees the airline’s extensive daily operations that span more than 1800 departures to more than 200 destinations across North America. In his time at the helm of the operation, Mike has continued to advance SkyWest’s reliability and overall operating performance. His confidence in the people of SkyWest and commitment to delivering exceptional quality continue to drive progress at the airline.
Mike holds both a Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering and a Master of Business Administration from Brigham Young University as well as a Bachelor of Science in Manufacturing Engineering. He previously served as the chief financial officer at Ivy Logistics Inc. Mike enjoys volunteering in his community and has volunteered for the Boy Scouts of America as well as contributed to the Idaho National Engineering & Environmental Laboratory as a research associate. He is co-author of Project Based Computer-Aided Engineering Applications.
Mike resides in St. George, Utah with his wife, their four sons and one daughter.
Chief Operating Officer of ExpressJet Airlines
Since his start in the industry in 1990, Terry has gained experience in many areas of airline operations, providing him with the expertise he relies on today to lead ExpressJet as Chief Operating Officer.
Most recently, Terry served as ExpressJet’s vice president of Operations, Planning and Support. In that role, he managed all planning and Operations Control Center functions while ensuring the safety and compliance of contracted ground operations and strengthening partnerships that support ExpressJet’s passengers, team members and operation. In September of 2015, Terry’s position was elevated to COO, where he will continue to forward the company’s mission of being the industry best in safety, reliability and service, and supporting a workforce of more than 8,000 employees.
Terry served four years active duty in the Marine Corps before entering the aviation industry. Prior to joining ExpressJet in 2008, he worked as the director of Hub Operations at Los Angeles International Airport and held a number of senior-level positions at SkyWest Airlines.
Terry resides in Newnan, Ga. with his wife.
Vice President of Information Technology for SkyWest, Inc.
Justin Esplin joined SkyWest in 2001 and in 2018, was named Vice President of Information Technology at SkyWest, Inc. and the ExpressJet Airlines and SkyWest Airlines subsidiaries.
Justin Esplin joined SkyWest in 2001 and in 2018, was named Vice President of Information Technology at SkyWest, Inc. and the ExpressJet Airlines and SkyWest Airlines subsidiaries. In his role as Vice President of Information Technology, Esplin oversees all of SkyWest Inc.’s IT operations including hardware, software, application development and internet security and leads a team of more than 100 IT professionals.
Esplin brings years of SkyWest IT experience to this role; before becoming VP he was the Director of Application Development at SkyWest, Inc. for nearly 10 years. Before joining SkyWest, Justin was a division software manager. He holds a computer engineering degree from Brigham Young University.
He and his wife, Allison, reside in St. George, Utah and are the parents of four children.
Chief Accounting Officer of SkyWest, Inc.
Eric joined SkyWest as Director - Financial Planning and Analysis in April 2004. He was named Vice President - Controller in April 2007 and in 2011, Eric was appointed Chief Accounting Officer of SkyWest, Inc. & subsidiaries. In this position, Eric is responsible for the accounting, reporting, SEC compliance, financial analysis, corporate taxation and internal controls of the Company.
Eric has a strong financial background from his public accounting experience where he spent seven years providing audit and advisory services to companies in the transportation, manufacturing and distribution, hospitality and software industries.
He has a bachelor's and master's degree in accounting from the University of Utah, and is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants.
He and his wife, Annie, live in St. George, Utah, with their four children.