CHICAGO, May 20, 2014 -- Boeing [NYSE: BA] today named Eric John as president of Boeing Korea, where he will lead all company activities in Korea, working to further expand Boeing’s local presence and pursue new growth opportunities. John joins the company effective May 30 after three decades of international service with the U.S. government. He succeeds Pat Gaines, who retires in September after 27 years with Boeing.
“Eric brings valuable experience from the public sector and international government operations and will help further expand our presence and collaboration with Korean customers, partners, communities and employees,” said Shep Hill, president of Boeing International and senior vice president of Business Development and Strategy. “He will continue Pat Gaines’ great work in building a strong foundation in the strategically important Korean market. Boeing has a long-term view of the market, and we will continue the legacy of a true partnership with Korea."
Before joining Boeing, John was a career member of the U.S. Senior Foreign Service. He was senior advisor for Security Negotiations and Agreements in the Department of State's Bureau of Political-Military Affairs, serving as the principal coordinator of U.S. government policy on an array of international security agreements. He previously served as the foreign policy advisor to the chief of staff of the U.S. Air Force, and as U.S. ambassador to Thailand. John joined the Foreign Service in 1983 and has served three tours in Korea, most recently as the Minister Counselor for Political Affairs at the U.S. Embassy in Seoul. He also served as the Deputy Director of Korean Affairs in Washington, D.C.
Gaines, a graduate of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, came to Korea in 2010 as president of Boeing Korea after serving as vice president of Customer Support for Asia-Pacific in Boeing Commercial Airplanes. He also led efforts that established the joint venture between FlightSafety International and Boeing, now known as Boeing Training and Flight Services.
Under Gaines’ leadership, Boeing signed contracts for AH-64 Apache helicopters, several commercial airplanes and related support services to customers in Korea. Gaines was also recognized in Korea for his contributions to the local business community as the chairman of the American Chamber of Commerce in Korea, enhancing bilateral trade efforts and developing a mutually beneficial business climate. He served as a member on the Presidential Council on National Competitiveness, an advisory group reporting to the president of Korea on economic growth and national competitiveness.
John is a graduate of the Georgetown University School of Foreign Service and holds a master's degree in national security studies from the National War College. He is a life member of the Council on Foreign Relations and speaks Korean and Vietnamese.
Boeing is the world's leading aerospace company and the largest manufacturer of commercial jetliners and military aircraft combined. Building on its successful partnership with Korea more than 60 years, Boeing opened an office in Seoul in 1988 to work closely with Korean customers and partners. Today, Korea represents one of the top 10 largest international markets for Boeing’s commercial and defense business units, and more than 200 Boeing employees work across the country.
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