The 2017 Executive Excellence Awards: Tucker Moodey

President, eCommerce Platform, Expedia Inc.
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In Tucker Moodey’s view, it’s comfortable to collaborate among people who share the same skills but more successful when you work across fields. That’s the insight he brought to leading Expedia’s eCommerce Platform, which supports a growing portfolio of online travel brands. Moodey’s two years in that role have required integrating some of Expedia’s largest acquisitions, including Travelo-city and Orbitz, into centralized operations. Infrastructure grew to support a 70 percent rise in transactions, improving scale and efficiency as well as performance. To deliver, he notes, “We had to make a fundamental change.” Moodey modeled the values he sought in others, holding listening sessions with employees at all levels and appointing a task force to address barriers to a collaborative culture. While compliance was eager, he says it was difficult to find leaders who could lead across disciplines, “experts who could manage not just the tech side but the operations side as well.” His success has its proof in the 3,000 global professionals who execute the technology and operations for Expedia’s growing stable of brands that also includes Hotels.com, Trivago, HomeAway and Hotwire. Moodey also finds great value in the skills of military veterans. As executive sponsor of the Expedia Military Veterans Association, he helps Expedia engage with the veteran community, mining the values of leadership and problem solving he strives to cultivate.

The 2017 Executive Excellence Awards: Governance Award

The 2017 Executive Excellence Awards: Governance Award

Board of Directors, Alaska Air Group
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Governing a company is different from running one, notes Alaska Air Group board member Phyllis J. Campbell. An effective board asks the right questions, and one that’s diverse makes that possibility more likely. “It’s sometimes messier,” Campbell says of the gender and racial mix of Alaska’s board. “We don’t always agree, by definition. That’s what diversity brings to the table. Innovation is linked to different points of view.” The regional operator of Alaska Airlines, Horizon Air and Virgin America stands out for having five women on its 11-member board, with ethnicities in the varied markets it serves strongly represented. This special mix helped Alaska Air Group receive a top ISS QualityScore in governance from Institutional Shareholder Services. Achieving that score required looking harder for board candidates, Campbell notes. “We all know who we know,” she explains, “but you have to really go in and work at finding maybe not the first people in your network.” Reaching outside comfort zones helped Alaska recruit people like Eric Yeaman, a telecom CEO of Hawaiian ancestry, and Helvi Sandvik, a development company president who is Alaska Native. Also boosting the board’s ISS score is a commitment to being at the forefront of progressive practices. Alaska was among the first companies to adopt term limits, easier proxy access and majority voting for uncontested elections. All board members other than the company’s CEO are independent directors, elected annually. Prohibitions on employee hedging of company stock as well as robust guidelines and disclosure of director-owned shares and executive incentives contributed to the good score. Such practices are meant to reduce risk, but Campbell notes they also communicate an openness and transparency. “We’re always looking for ways to signal that we’re accessible,” she says.