Louis Chenevert is the former chief executive officer of United Technologies Corporation (UTC). He accomplished a great deal while leading this company and has left a legacy that will be difficult for anyone else to top. He kept his focus on the long-term success of the company by investing in the people that work for the company as well as the technology that they use and create.
After graduating from college in Canada he joined General Motors as a production manager. He stayed with GM for 14 years before exiting in order to join Pratt & Whitney Canada as an executive. He was soon promoted to Pratt & Whitney where he was the president. Both of these companies are subsidiaries of UTC, to which he was promoted in March 2006. He was UTC’s president, chief operating officer, and director for two years at which time he was named the new chief executive officer.
While Louis Chenevert was leading Pratt & Whitney, he was responsible for a new engine design that changed the aerospace industry. It is a geared turbofan engine that not only saves airplanes precious amounts of fuel to operate, and halves emissions, but it also makes takeoffs and landing much quieter than the conventional engines that came before it. It was in large part his vision pushing this engine to a reality that landed him as the top executive at United Technologies Corporation.
Unlike his peers, Louis Chenevert wanted to keep manufacturing jobs in America instead of shipping them to places like China. While he was the CEO of UTC he had Pratt & Whitney build manufacturing plants in six states, for instance. He knew that by supporting the United States economy he would also benefit his own company in addition to American workers, including those who supply parts to UTC and its subsidiaries.
After Louis Chenevert closed a drawn-out deal to buy Goodrich, the biggest acquisition in the history of the aerospace industry, he put UTC in the position of being able to produce every single part of an airplane except the aeronautics. His efforts led to UTC being the leading supplier of airplane parts on the globe.