Nikki Haley has been elected to Boeing's board of directors months after leaving her post as U.S. ambassador to the United Nations in a surprise departure from the Trump administration. Haley is now one of 13 members of the board, which includes another former U.S. ambassador: Caroline Kennedy.
Hayley resigned as ambassador in October 2018, telling reporters at the time she would not run for office in 2020 and instead campaign for the president -- an attempt to quash speculation she might chart her own political course challenging President Trump.
Prior to her role at the United Nations, Haley served as South Carolina governor from January 2011 to January 2017. Before that she was a member of the South Carolina House of Representatives.
In her resignation letter to Mr. Trump, Haley alluded to the fact that she would be eyeing a return to the private sector after spending years in government. "I expect you will appreciate my sense that returning from government to the private sector is not a step down but a step up," she wrote.
A director's spot on such a board would also prove lucrative for Haley, who, after revelations from financial disclosures, was found to have hundreds of thousands of dollars in debt. Her office reportedly said her debts had no bearing on her decision to leave her U.N. post.
Haley's new role comes amid increased scrutiny on the aircraft manufacturing company after reporting abeing grounded following deadly crashes. Boeing was pressured to ground the jets following two crashes that resulted in the deaths of 346 people -- the March crash of an Ethiopian Airlines 737 Max flight and the October crash of a Lion Air flight. The company has said it is working to fix a software issue that may have contributed to the tragedies.
Speaking at Boeing's annual shareholder meeting in Chicago, CEO Dennis Muilenburg said the aerospace giant is making "steady progress" in implementing a software update that will enable the Federal Aviation Administration to certify the aircraft as safe.