Head of troubled Boeing 737 MAX program leaves company

The head of Boeing's troubled 737 MAX program — which includes the Alaska Airlines plane whose door blew off midair last month — is leaving the company, a senior Boeing official said Wednesday in a memo to employees.

Katie Ringgold will succeed Ed Clark as vice president and general manager for Boeing's 737 program as well as the Renton, Washington, factory that manufactures the planes, said Boeing Commercial Airplanes President and CEO Stan Deal.

The management shakeup of one of Boeing's key programs comes as the plane-maker faces continued scrutiny over its handling of the Alaska Airlines incident, which resulted in the fleet being temporarily grounded pending inspections. Those planes are now back in service, but the incident has sparked fresh worry about Boeing and its federal oversight.

Deal said the changes are being made amid Boeing's "enhanced focus on ensuring that every airplane we deliver meets or exceeds all quality and safety requirements."

"Our customers demand, and deserve, nothing less," he added in the memo.

The company's commercial division has created a new position of senior vice president for BCA Quality, which will be helmed by Elizabeth Lund with a focus on quality control and assurance. She's currently senior vice president and general manager for airplane programs at Boeing.