From left, Tom Nissalke, planning director; Roosevelt Council, general manager; and Frank Rucker, assistant general manager for the Planning and Development division, at Hartsfield-Jackson. They are key players in managing the airport’s $6 billion long-range expansion and modernization. HYOSUB SHIN / HSHIN@AJC.COM
Photo: Hyosub Shin/The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Photo: Hyosub Shin/The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Hartsfield-Jackson's manager of $6 billion expansion to leave airport

The man leading Hartsfield-Jackson International’s $6 billion expansion and modernization is leaving the airport to take another job.

Assistant general manager of planning and development Frank Rucker’s last day working for the world’s busiest airport will be July 7, when he will leave for a position at Jacobs Engineering Group in Singapore. Jacobs has an aviation team that does planning and development for airports around the world.

“Frank’s diligence, passion and work ethic have left a lasting impact on the world’s busiest and most efficient airport, and we wish him the best of luck in his future endeavors,” wrote Hartsfield-Jackson general manager Roosevelt Council in a letter to airport staff.

Rucker was hired in 2015 to replace Jim Drinkard, a longtime manager who retired from the airport. Rucker previously worked in airport planning in the United Arab Emirates and had worked for the Atlanta airport in years past as an engineering director.

While the airport searches for a replacement for Rucker, Hartsfield-Jackson deputy general manager Balram “B” Bheodari will be interim manager of planning and development, with the help of longtime airport planning director Tom Nissalke.

“While organizational change can be challenging, I am confident that our team will adjust and move forward quickly and seamlessly,” Council said, asking for patience from airport staff.

Bheodari rejoined the Atlanta airport last year after a stint at the Houston airport system, which is led by former Hartsfield-Jackson deputy general manager Mario Diaz.

Atlanta airport assistant general manager Cortez Carter, who oversees the airport’s ATL Business Ventures unit, will also now lead the airport’s commercial division, after departure last year of assistant general manager of commercial development Vivica Brown.

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