Al Checchi Wants To Make California Fly Right

He cleaned up his mess at Northwest. Why not try fixing a state?

It is scarcely 8 a.m. on Jan. 20, and Al Checchi is on a roll. Jumping from the chair in the study of his gated Beverly Hills home, the co-chairman of Northwest Airlines paces before bookcases that brim with biographies of Dwight D. Eisenhower, Franklin D. Roosevelt, and other leaders. In minutes, the suit coat comes off. And with the same intensity that the ex-Bass Brothers lieutenant once reserved for LBOs and turnarounds, Checchi talks about politics and civic responsibility.

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