Not many executives are called upon to play a pivotal role in saving one American icon, let alone two. Alan Mulally has been, first as the leader of Boeing Commercial Airplanes and, now, as chief executive of Ford Motor Co. He amusingly recalls his mother's reaction to his sudden corporate move here in September: "But Alan, you're an airplane guy." However, the move made sense to many who know him, including former Boeing Vice President Walt Gillette, who recalled the young Alan ...


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