J. Miguel Santos directs Boeing activities in all African countries except the Maghreb countries in Northern Africa. He manages Boeing relationships with government entities, customers, suppliers, business partners and other stakeholders; seeks mutually beneficial partnerships and business opportunities for Boeing; and supports the activities of Boeing business units in Africa. He also serves as Boeing Commercial Airplanes sales director for all Southern Africa countries including Angola, South Africa, Réunion and Mozambique. He is based in Johannesburg, South Africa, and reports to both Michael Arthur, president of Boeing International, and to Martin Bentrott, Boeing Commercial Airplanes vice president of sales for the Middle East, Turkey, Russia, Central Asia and Africa.
Santos has been with Boeing for nearly 40 years. He began his career in 1978 as an engineer and scientist at Douglas Aircraft Company. In 1984, he joined Boeing Commercial Airplanes and was assigned as area manager for Airline Analysis. He also served as an account manager and sales program manager for Africa Sales. His experience also includes positions as manager of 747/767 Sales Support Engineering, 747/767 marketing manager for Asia and manager of the 767FX/747FX and 747-500X/-600X marketing requirements programs. He was director of international sales, first responsible for Pakistan, Bangladesh and Bhutan in Asia; Cabo Verde, São Tomé e Príncipe, Angola, Mozambique and Mauritius in Africa; and later for South Africa and the rest of the Southern Africa Development Community countries.
Santos earned Bachelor of Science degrees in aeronautical and astronautical engineering and geological sciences from the University of Washington, an MBA from Pepperdine University, a master’s degree in naval command and staff from the Naval War College and a Master of Science degree in aerospace engineering from the University of Lisbon.
Santos holds the rank of commander in the U.S. Navy Reserve. He began his military career in 1984 as a DC-9 maintenance mechanic. In 1987, he was commissioned as an officer. He has held positions in various engineering units, such as the Naval Air Systems Command, and in force squadrons as line division officer, quality control officer, maintenance officer, training officer, and assistant program manager for Aircraft Maintenance Programs and Policies. He has received two Navy Achievement Medals, a Navy Commendation Medal and the Navy Meritorious Service Medal, and was named Reserve Officer of the Year in 1999.
Santos is a Fellow of the Royal Aeronautical Society (RAeS) and an Associate Fellow of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics. He is a member of the RAeS Air Transportation Board in the United Kingdom, a member of the Export-Import Bank’s Sub-Saharan Africa Advisory Committee and a member of the board of the Corporate Council on Africa. He lectures regularly at Cranfield University and various RAeS branches. He is a board member of the American Chamber of Commerce in South Africa and a chartered engineer in the U.K.
An American who was born in Portugal and raised in Angola, Santos speaks French, Spanish and Portuguese, and he reads and understands Italian.