Forty Under 40: Business

David Lauterstein heads up an impressive list of out business professionals that includes Betty Young, Scott Gatz, and Chris Allen.

BY Advocate.com Editors

May 05 2009 11:00 PM ET

1027 BETTY YOUNG 40 UNDER 40 X390 (GRAHAM SMITH) | ADVOCATE.COM

Betty Young | Airline executive | 39 | Hurst, Texas

Starting off in the reservations department almost 20 years ago, Betty Young climbed the corporate ladder at American Airlines' hub in Dallas, eventually finding her footing in gay and lesbian marketing. She now oversees all of American's minority-directed marketing, which includes outreach to black, female, Latino, and LGBT travelers; she was instrumental in implementing a gay-specific page on American's website -- AA.com/rainbow -- the first of its kind among airlines. The microsite has a calendar listing gay events such as cruises, charity dinners, and circuit parties, with promotion codes for booking airline tickets shown next to each event.

Young lives with her partner, who is a firefighter, and two teenage children from an earlier relationship. Central Texas is more accepting of gay families than most would think, she says. Recently she asked her daughter whether there would be resistance to a teenage friend hanging out at their house -- a gay home. Her 16-year-old said, "Mom, nobody cares you're gay! Nobody!"

Tags: Business

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