JFK Airport Manager Spampanato Retiring After 20 Years

The general manager of John F. Kennedy International, the sixth-busiest U.S. airport, is retiring after 20 years, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey said.

Gennaro “Jerry” Spampanato, 75, will be temporarily replaced by Huntley Lawrence, the agency’s deputy director of aviation, said Ron Marsico, a spokesman. Spampanato previously served as manager of Pan American World Airways operations at the airport, which served more than 50 million passengers last year, said Susan Baer, the Port Authority’s former aviation director.

“He really gave his heart and soul to the airport,” Baer said in a telephone interview. “He worked his way up from a ramp manager. He knew airline operations like very few ever will.”

The general manager oversees all operations at the 4,930-acre airport, including security, finances, capital improvements and the airfield. The manager also deals with the airlines that rent gates at JFK, which has six terminals and employs about 35,000.

Spampanato, who was paid $179,660 last year, didn’t return a call left at his home in East Meadow, Long Island.

(Adds job description in fourth paragraph.)
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