Executive Vice President and Chief Safety Officer
Kenneth “Ken” Hylander joined Amtrak in January 2018 as Executive Vice President and Chief Safety Officer. He reports to Amtrak President and CEO Richard Anderson and is responsible for safety planning, training and performance across the Amtrak national network. Ken leads the company’s consolidated safety resources, a team that includes the System Safety, Compliance and Training, Environmental Compliance, Sustainability and Public Health groups.
Ken has extensive experience in the safety and engineering fields, particularly in relation to the aviation industry. He is also a recognized leader in the implementation and operation of Safety Management Systems (SMS), which are proactive risk management systems that build on predictive safety management methods.
As a Senior Vice President at Delta from 2008 to 2014, he managed occupational, operating safety, security, quality and environmental compliance programs. He oversaw improvement in safety and security metrics and led implementation of SMS continuous improvement in accordance with international and Federal Aviation Administration regulations. Ken also chaired the Delta Connection Safety Alliance which worked toward a single level of safety in operations among the Delta Air Lines network.
In 1997, Ken joined Northwest Airlines as the Vice President of Quality, Reliability and Engineering. Prior to the 2008 merger with Delta, he served as the Vice President of Safety and Engineering and as Chief Safety Officer. Ken was responsible for management of operational, occupational and environmental safety performance and programs. Ken began his aviation career at United Airlines, where over nearly 17 years he held a variety of engineering, quality assurance and operations management positions.
Due to his extensive professional experience, Ken has been asked to serve on numerous advisory committees. He was a senior advisor to the United States Air Force's Fleet Viability Board, which counseled the Secretary of the Air Force on fleet maintenance and sustainability plans, and he was also a chair of the American Society for Quality's Aviation, Space and Defense Division.
Among the honors Ken has received are the William Littlewood Memorial Lecture award (2013) from the Society of Automotive Engineers – Aerospace Division in recognition of his contributions to the fields of aviation safety and engineering, and the “Nuts and Bolts” award (2002) from the Air Transport Association’s Engineering Maintenance and Materials Committee for leadership provided to senior airline maintenance and engineering professionals
Ken currently serves on the board of governors of the Flight Safety Foundation and is an independent member of the board of directors of Monroe Energy, an oil refinery subsidiary of Delta Air Lines.
Ken graduated from the University of Rhode Island with a bachelor of science in Mechanical Engineering. He also holds a master’s degree in Business Administration from the California State University, East Bay.