Robert Fornaro was appointed as President and CEO of Spirit, the largest Ultra-Low Cost Carrier in the United States, Latin America and the Caribbean, in January 2016. He became a member of, and will continue to be a member of, the Spirit Airlines Board of Directors in May 2014.
Prior to his appointment as CEO of Spirit he served as President of Parkview Partners LLC, an Orlando-based transportation and travel industry advisory firm. Mr. Fornaro retired as Chairman, CEO and President of AirTran Holdings, Inc., and its subsidiary, AirTran Airways in May 2011. Fornaro joined AirTran in March 1999 as President and Chief Financial Officer, was named Chief Operating Officer and elected to the board of directors in 2001, and became Chief Executive Officer in 2007.
Fornaro has more than 35 years of marketing, planning, finance and general management experience. Bob also has substantial experience in financial turnarounds and operational restructurings. During his tenure at AirTran, the Company transformed itself from a regional to an international airline and experienced a near seven-fold increase in revenue to nearly $3 billion. AirTran achieved the unique position of being the lowest cost provider of any major U.S. airline as well as achieving industry - leading service metrics.
Prior to joining AirTran Airways, he operated a successful aviation consulting practice. From 1992 to 1997, Fornaro served as senior vice president - planning for US Airways where he directed the company's route planning, pricing and revenue management and overall corporate strategy. From 1988 to 1992, Fornaro held the position of senior vice president - marketing planning at Northwest Airlines. His responsibilities included strategy and planning as well as managing Northwest's international alliances and regional airline partner relationships.
Fornaro holds a Master's degree in City & Regional Planning from Harvard University and a Bachelor's degree in economics from Rutgers College.
John Bendoraitis joined Spirit as Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Office in October 2013. Bendoraitis brings nearly 30 years of industry experience to the role, which includes responsibility for the areas of technical operations, airport operations, flight operations, inflight, our operational control center, properties and facilities, and safety and security.
Prior to joining Spirit, Bendoraitis served as Chief Operating Officer of Frontier Airlines. Previously, from 2008 to 2012, he served as President of Comair Airlines. From 2006 to 2008, he served as President of Compass Airlines, where he was responsible for the certification and launch of the airline. Bendoraitis began his aviation career at Northwest Airlines, where over a 22-year span he worked his way up from aircraft technician to vice president of base maintenance operations.
Bendoraitis holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Metro State University in St. Paul, Minn., and an MBA from St. Thomas University in Minneapolis. He also holds an A&P Certificate from Parks College of Engineering, Aviation and Technology in St. Louis, Mo.
Ted Christie joined Spirit, the largest Ultra Low Cost Carrier in the United States, Latin America and the Caribbean, in April 2012 as our Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer. In this role he has responsibility for the areas of finance, treasury, accounting, tax, investor relations, and information technology.
Prior to joining Spirit, Christie served as CFO of Pinnacle Airlines Corp, an airline holding company with subsidiaries flying as Delta Connection, United Express and US Airways Express. Christie began his airline career at Frontier Airlines in 2002. He was appointed Vice President of Finance in 2007 and promoted to Senior Vice President and CFO in 2008. During his tenure at Frontier he helped the carrier to restructure and to achieve a competitive cost structure.
Christie has also held the position of Vice President of Finance at a Denver asset-based finance institution and began his career as an Economist for the Arizona taxing authority.
Christie earned a Bachelor of Business Administration in Finance from the University of Arizona in 1992.