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Brooke Sutherland

Delayed Flight? Honeywell May Have a Fix

The company is working on innovative ways to make air travel smoother and more efficient. It’s Kristin Slyker’s job to get customers on board.

Taking to the skies with Honeywell’s Kristin Slyker.

Taking to the skies with Honeywell’s Kristin Slyker.

Photographer: Honeywell

Honeywell International Inc. CEO Darius Adamczyk isn’t the type to play the hype man, so when he says he’s “extraordinarily excited” about something, it’s meaningful. Those were the words he used earlier this year to describe Honeywell’s vision for using technology to improve air travel and stake out a leading position in the burgeoning field of connected aircraft. It’s Kristin Slyker’s job to make that happen.

Slyker, 44, leads the company’s efforts to sell antennas that enable satellite communications, high-speed in-flight WiFi service and software that can improve fuel efficiency, predict maintenance needs and help pilots plan flights. It’s a job she says she never would have envisioned for herself when she joined the company more than 16 years ago in an information-technology role. Having grown up in the Phoenix area, where Honeywell Aerospace’s headquarters are located, she graduated from Arizona State University’s W.P. Carey School of Business with a degree in computer information systems. But with a father who served in the Air National Guard, airplanes were an important part – and occasional playground – of Slyker’s childhood.