Colin Matthews has confirmed he will be standing down as chief executive of Heathrow later this year.
Matthews joined Heathrow in March 2008 and under his leadership the proportion of passengers rating their journey through Heathrow as good or excellent has increased from less than 50 per cent to more than 75 per cent.
Terminal 5 has been voted by passengers as the world’s best airport terminal for the past three years.
Heathrow has constructed a brand new Terminal 2, which is set to open to passengers in June.
The airport successfully welcomed the world to Britain as the official gateway for the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
In December, Heathrow’s option for a third runway was shortlisted by Sir Howard Davies’ Airports Commission.
Matthews said: “It has been a privilege to serve as chief executive of Heathrow for the last six years.
“With a strong leadership team, the company continues to raise standards of passenger service, improve efficiency and reduce costs.
“The opening of Terminal 2: The Queen’s Terminal in June this year is a further important step in the transformation of Heathrow and long term prospects are bright following the decision of the Airports Commission to shortlist our proposal for a new runway.
“So once Terminal 2 has opened later this year, I have decided the time is right to pass on the baton.”