D.Y. Smith was President of Delta from December 3, 1928 to June 11, 1934.
Clarence E. Faulk was President from June 11, 1934 to October, 29, 1945, when he was promoted to Chairman of the Board, Delta's first Chairman. He remained Chairman until his death on August 31, 1951.
C.E. Woolman (October 8, 1889 – September 11, 1966), Delta's Principal Founder and first CEO. As Vice President and General Manager, Woolman operated the company from its incorporation and acted as liaison with the Board of Directors. He was named President and General Manager on October 29, 1945, succeeding Mr. Faulk as President.
On November 1, 1965, Woolman reluctantly allowed the title of General Manager to be dropped, since this designation was no longer in fashion, and accepted the promotion to Chairman and CEO. He was Delta's first CEO. Woolman served in this capacity until his death on September 11, 1966.
Carleton Putnam, Founder of Chicago and Southern Air Lines (C&S) and its first President, then Chairman of the Board of C&S. Became Delta's new Chairman of the Board after Delta and C&S merged on May 1, 1953. He resigned in January 1955 as Chairman and remained a member of the Board of Directors.
Richard W. Freeman of The Coca Cola Company, a long time member of the Delta Board of Directors, succeeded Putnam as Chairman of the Board in January 1955. Freeman served as Chairman until November 1, 1965, when he resigned as Chairman and remained a member of the Board of Directors.
Charles H. Dolson (May 13, 1906 – Sept. 4, 1992), succeeded C.E. Woolman as Delta's President on November 1, 1965. On September 14, 1966, after Woolman's death, the Board designated Dolson as Acting Board Chairman, added CEO duties, leaving his title as President.
Dolson was formally elected Chairman of the Board and CEO on January 22, 1970 and served in this capacity until November 1, 1971, when he retired but remained a member of the Board of Directors. Dolson was Delta's second CEO.
W.T. "Tom" Beebe (Jan. 26, 1915 – June 9, 1984) became Delta's President on January 22, 1970 after Charles Dolson's promotion to Chairman. On November, 1, 1971, he was promoted to Chairman and CEO. Beebe was Delta's third CEO.
The CEO position was transferred to David C. Garrett, Jr. on February 2, 1978, with Beebe remaining Chairman of the Board. Beebe stepped down as chairman on October 28, 1983, remaining a director until his death in 1984.
David C. Garrett, Jr. (July 6, 1922 – June 2, 2012) was promoted to President on November 1, 1971 following Tom Beebe. He added the office of CEO on February 1, 1978 (Delta's fourth CEO). Garrett held these positions until October 28, 1983, when he assumed the offices of Chairman of the Board and CEO. He held these offices until his retirement on August 1, 1987. Garrett remained a member of the Board of Directors until 1994.
Ronald W. Allen (1942 –) was named President and COO on October 28, 1983, following Dave Garrett's promotion, and promoted to Chairman of the Board and CEO on August 1, 1987, succeeding Garrett. Allen was Delta fifth CEO.
When Hollis Harris retired on August 8, 1990, Allen assumed the additional responsibilities of President, becoming Chairman of the Board, President and Chief Executive Officer until a new president was elected effective on May 1, 1991. From this time, May 1, 1991 to March 1, 1993, he served only as Chairman of the Board and CEO.
On March 1, 1993, after Whit Hawkins retired from Delta, Allen once again assumed the additional responsibilities of President, becoming Chairman of the Board, President and Chief Executive Officer. He continued to hold the positions of Chairman, President and CEO until his retirement on July 31, 1997. He also resigned from the Board of Directors at his retirement.
Hollis L. Harris, Senior Vice President - Operations Division, was named President and Chief Operating Officer on August 1, 1987, succeeding Ron Allen. Harris retired from Delta and resigned from the Board of Directors on August 8, 1990.
W. Whitley Hawkins, Executive Vice President - Marketing & Stations, was elected President and Chief Operating Officer effective May 1, 1991. He served in that position until his retirement and resignation from the Board of Directors on March 1, 1993.
Gerald Grinstein (1932 –), a member of the Delta Board, was elected Non-Executive Chairman, effective August 14, 1997. He served in this position until October 28, 1999. Previously, Grinstein had served as CEO and Chairman of Western Airlines, joining the Delta Board when Western merged with Delta on April 1, 1987.
Grinstein became Chief Executive Officer of Delta on January 1, 2004 (Delta's seventh CEO). He also assumed the post of Chief Operating Officer, replacing Fred Reid on April 1, 2004. The COO position transferred to Jim Whitehurst in July 2005. Grinstein resigned as Delta CEO and from the Board of Directors on September 1, 2007.
Leo F. Mullin (1943 –), Vice Chairman, Unicom Corporation & Commonwealth Edison Company, was elected as Delta's President and CEO and member of the Board, effective August 14, 1997. He was Delta's sixth CEO.
On October 28, 1999, Mullin was elected Chairman of the Board, becoming Chairman, President and CEO. On May 2, 2001, the title of President transferred to Fred Reid. Mullin resigned as CEO on January 1, 2004, remaining Chairman until April 23, 2004.
Frederick W. Reid, Executive Vice President - Chief Marketing Officer, became President and Chief Operating Officer on May 2, 2001. He retired on April 1, 2004.
John F. Smith, Jr., a Delta Board member since 2000, and formerly CEO and Chairman of General Motors, served as Delta Chairman from April 24, 2004, until his retirement from the Board on April 30, 2007.
Daniel A. Carp, formerly CEO and Chairman of Eastman Kodak, joined the Delta Board and was elected Chairman effective April 30, 2007. He stepped down as non-executive Chairman on May 2, 2016, remaining on the Board.
Richard H. Anderson (1955 –), succeeded Jerry Grinstein as Delta's eighth CEO on September 1, 2007. A member of the Delta Board since April 30, 2007, Anderson formerly served as CEO of Northwest Airlines from 2001-2004. Northwest merged with Delta in 2008. Anderson retired as Delta's CEO effective May 2, 2016, becoming Executive Chairman of the Delta Board of Directors. He retired from the Board on October 11, 2016.
Edward H. Bastian (1957 –), President, became Delta's ninth Chief Executive Officer on May 2, 2016, after Richard Anderson's promotion to Executive Chairman. Bastian was appointed President in September 1, 2007, continuing to also serve as Chief Financial Officer since July 2005. The CFO position transferred to Hank Halter when Bastian began serving as President and CEO of Northwest from the airline's merger with Delta on October 29, 2008, to December 31, 2009, when the airlines began single operations. Bastian was elected a member of the Board, effective February 5, 2010.
Glen W. Hauenstein, Executive Vice President - Commercial and Chief Revenue Officer, was promoted to President effective May 2, 2016.
Francis S. "Frank" Blake, formerly Chairman and CEO of The Home Depot, became non-executive Chairman of Delta's Board of Directors on October 11, 2017, after Richard Anderson's retirement as Executive Chairman.