Monday, March 19, 2012

Clark stepping down as Indianapolis airport CEO

 John Clark

INDIANAPOLIS -  The executive director and CEO of the Indianapolis International Airport is stepping down.
The Indianapolis Airport Authority (IAA) says John D. Clark III "is departing the authority to pursue other interests."

Clark joined the IAA in 2009.

Clark's resignation is effective today. Robert Duncan has been named interim director subject to the approval of the IAA board, which meets Friday, March 23. Duncan will hold that position until the search for Clark's successor has been completed.

The developments come as the IAA considers changes to the panel's travel policy after records showed three top airport officials spent more than $67,000 last year on travel in the U.S. and abroad.

A report found that Clark spent nearly half of the $67,000 on trips that included a $10,000 meeting in Zurich and $8,300 to attend an airport conference in Morocco. Clark says many of the trips were related to his role with the industry's key trade group, Airports Council International.

An investigation by WTHR in 2010 revealed that Clark, who earned $270,000 a year at the time, took 31 business trips in his first 15 months on the job, racking up $45,000 in travel expenses, several of which were submitted months after he traveled.

Our investigation also found when Clark and his CFO took three airline representatives to the Miami Super Bowl, he didn't turn in his expense reports (which included $4,500 for five game tickets) until mid-June. Clark said he was "simply tardy" and "not trying to avoid anything."

Clark also traveled to Kuala Lumpur in the fall of 2009 for the Airport Councils International World Conference and Exhibition. While the conference ran three days, Clark's expense report showed he was gone 11 days. He expensed $2,700 for airfare and $2,295 for lodging but the only itemized receipts deal with $175 to replace a lost cell phone.

Asked if he took any vacation days during that trip, Clark said he wasn't sure, but added there are often meetings before a conference. He also noted travel time and the need to acclimate following a long flight.

After being named airport CEO, Clark hosted four guests at Augusta National Golf Club, home of the Masters, for "business development." He expensed $735 for airfare and $2,306.51 for lodging.

WTHR's investigation also found that Clark's subordinate, the CFO, signed off on his expenses.


About the Indianapolis Airport Authority

The Indianapolis Airport Authority (IAA) owns and operates Indiana’s largest airport system.

In addition to Indianapolis International Airport (IND), its facilities include the Downtown Heliport, Eagle Creek Airpark, Hendricks County Airport, Indianapolis Regional Airport, and Metropolitan Airport. IND has received several prestigious awards recognizing it as a leader within its class, including annual Airport Service Quality awards for performance excellence by Airports Council International. IND is the first airport in the U.S. to win LEED® certification for an entire terminal campus, and the airport has won recognition for excellent customer service, concessions programs, and art and architecture.

IND’s economic impact in Central Indiana is more than $3.3 billion annually, and about 10,000 people work at the airport each day. Benefitting from lower-than-average fares, IND serves more than 7 million business and leisure travelers each year and averages 135 daily nonstop flights to 34 destinations. Home of the world's second-largest FedEx Express operation and the nation’s eighth-largest cargo facility, IND is committed to becoming the airport system of choice for both passenger and cargo service. For more information, visit IND’s Facebook page at Indianapolis International Airport and Twitter page at @INDairport.

Source: Indianapolis Airport Authority

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