Summit Notebook

Exclusive outtakes from industry leaders

L-3 CEO Strianese finds crawling around airplanes fun

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Michael Strianese, President and CEO of L-3 Communications Holdings Inc., is a roll up the sleeves kind of guy who likes nothing better than a close-up look at airplanes and wiring and sensors. And he’s not even an engineer.

“What do I like to do? I like to get down on the factory floor with the guys and crawl around airplanes and look at wiring and figure out how things work. So for somebody with a finance background, I think that surprises people,” he said at the Reuters Aerospace and Defense Summit. AERO-ARMS-SUMMIT/

“I think what might surprise people is I spend a lot of time developing some of the technical solutions on our unmanned systems that we developed internally over the last couple of years,” he said.

The company CEO has had a personal hand in the systems for the Viking 400, Mobius and Project Liberty aircraft.

L-3 chief Strianese: “I was not born a CEO”

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The Chief Executive Officer of L-3 Communications says he’s a “city kid” from New York who worked his way up from loading trucks in the Bronx as a college student to being in charge of  a large U.S. defense contractor. AERO-ARMS-SUMMIT/

And so he takes exception when people demonize CEOs just for the sake of it.

“We went though a period of time where CEOs were cast as the villains of the earth,” Michael Strianese said in an interview at the Reuters Aerospace and Defense Summit.

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