Keith Williams became British AirwaysÕ chief executive in January 2011, following the merger with Iberia. He also sits on the Board of the two airlinesÕ parent company, International Airlines Group. As chief financial officer of British Airways over the previous five years, he played a leading part in the airlineÕs achievement of a record operating margin in 2007, before steering it through the worst recession in its history and masterminding a solution to its long-standing pensions deficit. After joining the airline in 1998, he became British AirwaysÕ group treasurer and head of tax. He was heavily involved in restructuring the airlineÕs finances after the aviation slump that followed the terrorist attacks of 9/11 and in the plans that brought the company back to profitability.