By Carolyn Gray Anderson
Anderson’s annual Alumni Weekend Conference, themed “Idea. Change. Impact.” opened with breakout sessions on topics ranging from smart personal finance to “Crafting a Compelling Career Narrative” to a spotlight on some of today’s most disruptive innovators. Class of 1985’s Craig Kreeger, CEO of Virgin Atlantic Airways, delivered the keynote address.
President of the UCLA Anderson Alumni Network Wendy Spinner (’89) briefly took the podium to acknowledge her fellow board members and to remind alumni to make the effort to connect with their global Anderson network. Following remarks by Anderson Associate Dean of Alumni Relations Jill Baldauf (’81) — who expressed excitement about the new Anderson Alumni Weekend app, the exclusive MBA lounge and the revival of the Anderson Beer Bust — Andy Howard (’16) introduced Kreeger.
Kreeger joined Virgin Atlantic in 2013, after 27 years with American Airlines, where he held commercial, financial and strategic roles in the US and around the globe. Recruited on campus at Anderson, he joined American as an analyst not because he had always dreamed of world travel or being an airline pilot; he said he thought it was a “cool-sounding job.” And his career choice certainly panned out to become a true calling: he was appointed SVP, customer, in 2012, having spent spent six years in London as SVP, international, responsible for operations and sales throughout Europe, the Middle East, Africa and the Pacific.