Virgin America appoints CIO

Virgin America is appointing Dean Cookson as the Company’s new Vice President and Chief Information Officer (CIO).

A 20-year IT industry veteran, Cookson has extensive experience in architecting and building large-scale, high-performance systems.  In the CIO position, Cookson will develop and lead the growing Silicon Valley-based airline’s strategic technology initiatives, including the implementation of the Company’s new reservations and operational platforms in 2011. 

“As a young airline, the integrity, speed and efficiency of our technology platforms are critically important to our business,” said Virgin America CEO and President David Cush.  “Dean has a wealth of experience in building IT platforms that improve efficiency and user experience in technology-driven businesses – from start-ups to larger companies.  His expertise will help shape our IT capabilities at a pivotal point of growth for Virgin America – and we couldn’t be more pleased to welcome him.” 

Cookson comes to Virgin America from Basho Technologies, where he served as Vice President of Business Development.  Prior to that, Cookson served as Chief of Operations at the HP-owned Snapfish, where he had responsibility for all aspects of site delivery, product fulfillment and customer support.  Before joining Snapfish, Cookson served as Director of Operations at Looksmart, where he oversaw production systems, database, network and data centers. 

In his new role, Cookson will oversee Virgin America’s data centers, storage subsystems, core application infrastructure and integration, and the architecture of its Web site. 


Cookson attended Case Western Reserve University and Northeastern University in Boston, where he studied Computer Science.  Cookson lives in Mill Valley with his wife and two sons.