Tewolde GebreMariam

Group Chief Executive Officer 

Ethiopian Airlines

Tewolde GebreMariam began his career at Ethiopian Airlines in 1985. He served in different capacities in the cargo traffic handling department and progressed up the ladder to Manager Cargo Traffic Handling.

He was appointed as Regional Director for India and South East Asia based in Bombay and later on transferred to Jeddah as Area Manager for Saudi Arabia. When Ethiopian Airlines commenced direct services to the USA, he was appointed as Area Sales Manager for North East USA and Canada based in New York. 

On August 16, 2004, he was appointed as Executive Officer Marketing & Sales to head the Marketing and Sales Operations of Ethiopian Airlines. 

On July 1, 2006, he was appointed as Chief Operating Officer of Ethiopian Airlines to head all the operating divisions of the airline: Commercial, Flight Operations, Customer Services and Maintenance and Engineering. Since January 1, 2011, he has been serving as Group CEO of Ethiopian Airlines. 

In his CEO role, Mr. Tewolde has been a multiple award winner. In November of 2012, he won “The African CEO of the Year-2012” award from the African CEO Forum organized jointly by Jeune Afrique and the African Development Bank in Geneva. 

In December 2012, he won “The Best African Business Leader” award from the Washington D.C. based Corporate Council on Africa, which promotes trade and investment ties between the USA and Africa. 


In July 2013, he became the first African Airline CEO to receive “The Airline Strategy Award for Regional Leadership” in the award's 12-year history. The Award is given out annually by Airline Business Magazine, a publication of Flight Global, the world's leading aviation media brand. In November 2013, he won the 2013 “planet Africa professional Excellence Award”.

Ethiopian CEO is awarded Gold Medal by Ethiopian Airlines Board of Directors for his exceptional leadership, dedication and hard work, which have enabled Ethiopian to register outstanding performance as per its fast, profitable and sustainable growth strategy Vision 2025. 

Ethiopian CEO is awarded a plaque for his exceptional leadership and the successful accomplishments towards Vision 2025 from Ethiopian Airlines Basic Trade Union. 

Ethiopian CEO received the 2015 International Grand Prix Special Award in Milan. The recognition was for his achievements in developing the Airline into the foremost aviation group in Africa and for spearheading the transformation of Ethiopian into becoming one of the fastest growing airlines in the world. 

In December 2015, Mr. Tewolde won “Most Gender Focused CEO Award 2015” from the Leading Women of Africa (LWA). 

In addition to his duties as CEO of Ethiopian Airlines, he serves as a member on the High-level Advisory Group on Sustainable Transport (HLAG-ST) with United Nations Secretary – General Ban Ki-moon. He also serves as a member of the Board of Governors of the International Air Transport Association (IATA); an Executive Committee member of the African Airlines Association (AFRAA); a  Board member of the Airlink Advisory Council; a member of Board of Directors of Africa Travel Association (ATA);  a member of Board of Directors of Ethio-Telecom, a Board member of Ethiopian Railway Corporation; a Board Member of Commercial Bank of Ethiopia; and the Chairman of  the Board of Directors of the Ethiopian Tourism Organization (ETO). 

He earned his B.A. Degree in Economics from the Addis Ababa University in Ethiopia and his Master's Degree in Business Administration from the Open University in the United Kingdom.


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