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July 8, 2024 – The Board of Directors of Southwest Airlines Co. (NYSE: LUV) (“Southwest”) (the “Company”) has appointed Rakesh Gangwal as a member of the Board, effective July 7.

Gangwal has deep and extensive airline industry experience and is the co-founder of India’s largest airline by fleet size and passengers carried, InterGlobe Aviation, known as IndiGo. Before co-founding IndiGo in 2006, Gangwal served as Chairman, President, and Chief Executive Officer of Worldspan Technologies, a provider of technology and information services to the travel and transportation industry. Prior to his time at Worldspan, Gangwal served as President and Chief Executive Officer of US Airways Group, and previously as its Chief Operating Officer. Gangwal previously served in executive roles at Air France and United Airlines.

“I am delighted to welcome Rakesh, who brings to our Board decades of valuable experience as an executive and entrepreneur at some of the world’s leading airlines,” said Gary Kelly, Executive Chairman of the Board. “Having co-founded IndiGo and grown it into India’s largest airline, Rakesh knows the importance of building a business that has both a distinct culture and enduring profitability.”

“I have long admired Southwest Airlines and am honored to join the Board,” said Gangwal. “Together with the rest of the Board, I look forward to supporting the Company’s strategic direction and building on its well-earned reputation as one of the world’s most admired and respected airlines.”

“Rakesh’s expertise in travel technology will be valuable as we continue to make investments that support our operations and strategic initiatives,” added Kelly. “We look forward to working with Rakesh and benefitting from his insights to best serve our Customers, do right by our Employees, and drive long-term Shareholder value.”

In addition to having served on the board of InterGlobe Aviation, Gangwal has also served on several other public company Boards, including US Airways Group, CarMax, Office Depot, OfficeMax, and PetSmart. Gangwal earned a Bachelor of Technology degree from the Indian Institute of Technology and a Master of Business Administration from The Wharton School at University of Pennsylvania.

Gangwal’s appointment continues the Board’s deliberate efforts to evolve its composition to comprise professionals with a diverse range of skills and experience in areas critical to Southwest Airlines’ business, including aviation, travel, finance, technology, consumer services, governmental affairs, human capital, environmental and sustainability, and logistics and operations. As part of its continued refreshment efforts, the Board has appointed a total of eight new independent and highly-qualified Directors, including Gangwal, over the last three years.

About Southwest Airlines Co.
Southwest Airlines Co. operates one of the world’s most admired and awarded airlines, offering its one-of-a-kind value and Hospitality at 121 airports1 across 11 countries. Southwest took flight in 1971 to democratize the sky through friendly, reliable, and low-cost air travel and now carries more air travelers flying nonstop within the United States than any other airline2. Based in Dallas and famous for an Employee-first corporate Culture, Southwest maintains an unprecedented record of no involuntary furloughs or layoffs in its history. By empowering its more than 74,0003People to deliver unparalleled Hospitality, the maverick airline cherishes a passionate loyalty among more than 137 million Customers carried in 2023. That formula for success has brought industry-leading prosperity and 47 consecutive years4 of profitability for Southwest Shareholders (NYSE: LUV). Southwest leverages a unique legacy and mission to serve communities around the world including harnessing the power of its People and Purpose to put communities at the Heart of its success. Learn more by visiting As the airline with Heart, Southwest has set a goal to work toward achieving net zero carbon emissions by 20505. Southwest has also set near-term targets and a three-pillar strategy to achieve its environmental goals. Learn more by visiting

Effective Aug. 5, 2024, the airline will serve 117 airports.
Based on U.S. Dept. of Transportation quarterly Airline Origin & Destination Survey since Q1 2021
Fulltime-equivalent active Employees
1973-2019 annual profitability
Southwest’s net zero by 2050 goal includes Scope 1, Scope 2, and Scope 3 Category 3 emissions only and excludes any emissions associated with non-fuel products and services, such as inflight service items.
SOURCE Southwest Airlines Co.

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