Montana State University

MSU hosts Oct. 6 Orser lecture with former CEO of Delta

September 28, 2015 -- MSU News Service

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Jerry Grinstein, strategic director of Madrona Venture Group and former CEO of Delta Air Lines, will present "The Importance of Ethics in Business Leadership" from 5-7 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 6, in Jabs Hall 111 on the Montana State University campus. The lecture is part of the MSU Jake Jabs College of Business and Entrepreneurship’s David Orser Executive Speakers Forum and is free and open to the public.

In his presentation, Grinstein will discuss how to discern if a potential employer’s values and ethics fit with one’s own values and ethics in the search for a rewarding career.

Grinstein is currently a strategic director at Madrona Venture Group located in Seattle. He is also a trustee of the Henry M. Jackson Foundation and a board member of Long Live the Kings, the William D. Ruckelshaus Center and the Seattle Cancer Care Alliance.

Grinstein was CEO of Delta Air Lines from 2004 to 2007. He also served as director of Delta Air Lines since 1987 and as Delta’s non-executive chairman from 1997 to 1999. From 1999-2002, Grinstein was non-executive chairman of Agilent Technologies. He also served as chairman and CEO of Burlington Northern, Inc., where he oversaw the company’s acquisition of Santa Fe Pacific Corp. The acquisition created the nation’s largest railroad system.

Other previous positions included serving as president and CEO of Western Airlines, Inc., from 1984-1987 and as partner in the law firm Preston, Thorgrimson, Ellis & Holman from 1969-1983. He was also chief counsel to the U.S. Senate Commerce Committee, counsel to the Merchant Marine & Transportation subcommittee and administrative assistant to U.S. Sen. Warren G. Magnuson.

A native of Seattle, Grinstein graduated from Yale College in 1954 and Harvard Law School in 1957. He and his wife, Lyn, live in Seattle.

The MSU Jake Jabs College of Business and Entrepreneurship's David Orser Executive Speakers Forum is named for David B. Orser, a 1966 MSU graduate who began funding the program in 1988 in order to inspire MSU business students to pursue careers as innovative, responsible and ethical business leaders. For more information about the forum, contact Anna Reardon at (406) 994-6195 or

Contact: Anna Reardon, (406) 994-6195 or