Interim Atlanta Airport General Manager Balram Bheodari has been hired for the permanent role by outgoing Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms.
Mr. Bheodari took up the top role at Hartsfield-Jackson upon the departure of former General Manager John Selden, who left to head up the airports group at Neom, a new city being built in Saudi Arabia.
Known affectionately as “B” around the airport, Mr. Bheodari is a retired Army aviator with 22 years of service.
As deputy GM, he helped lead the airport through the thick of the pandemic, where traffic dropped by 97 percent within a week of the shutdown orders.
Among many accomplishments since arriving at ATL in June of 2000, he played key roles in the development of the consolidated rental car center and its associated ATL SkyTrain, as well as “spearheaded the opening of the 1.2-million-square-foot Maynard H. Jackson Jr. International Terminal, which accommodated more than 12 million international travelers each year prior to the pandemic,” according to a news release from the mayor’s office.
He is a Troy University graduate with a bachelor’s in aviation management and has completed an Emory University executive training program and has accreditation as an airport professional and executive from key industry bodies.
For the first time in more than a decade, Hartfsfield-Jackson in 2020 was not the busiest airport in the world, barely losing the title to Guangzhou Bai Yun International Airport as the pandemic’s spread across the world depressed travel demand while China recovered relatively quickly. Atlanta did, however, maintain its ranking as the world’s most efficient airport.