TOKYO May 9,2005: The chairman of Japan Airlines Corporation, Isao Kaneko, will retire from the board on May 31. A JAL Corporation board meeting today, May 9th, approved Mr. Kaneko's appointment as a senior advisor to the JAL Group, effective from June 1st. Currently he is chairman of Japan Airlines Corporation - the JAL Group holding company. He became C.E.O. of the new JAL Group in June 2003, and stepped down from the post on April 1st 2005.
Isao Kaneko (65) was elected president of JAL, Japan's biggest international airline, on June 26 1998, after an airline career focused mainly on human resources, personnel management and industrial relations. He was also the chairman of the Board of Governors of the International Air Transport Association (IATA) the trade association of the international airline industry, until June 2004.
He joined JAL in April 1960 after graduating from Tokyo University's Law Department in March 1960. After experience in JAL's international cargo department, he joined the airline's industrial relations department, where he was to spend much of his JAL career. In 1968 he was posted to JAL's American Region headquarters in New York where he worked in administration, with involvement in local labor issues. He returned to Tokyo and JAL's industrial relations department in 1972.
Personal interests: Mr. Kaneko is an avid reader with very broad tastes. His favorite sport is basketball and if he were not in the airline business, he would have liked to be a basketball coach. He is the founder of the JAL women's basketball team, the JAL Rabbits, and was for a time their coach. He is now the team's honorary president.
Born in March 1, 1938 , he is married, with a daughter and resides in Tokyo.