Robert Beyer is head of Chaparral Investments, a company he founded in 2009, according to the Mayor's Office.
If confirmed by the City Council, he'll fill the vacancy left by Alan Rothenberg, who stepped down in December from the seven-member civilian panel that oversees Los Angeles International, L.A./Ontario International, Van Nuys and Palmdale airports.
Beyer must be confirmed by March 4, according to the Mayor's Office.
"His unique combination of experience in business and investment management will serve our airports well as we strive to modernize and operate them successfully, to improve service to travelers and to remain competitive in the global market," Villaraigosa said.
During his investment career, Beyer oversaw large businesses and managed more than 1,500 employees, according to the Mayor's Office.
He also is a director for Allstate Corp. and Kroger Co., which is the parent company of Ralphs grocery stores, as well as an owner and advisory board member of the Milwaukee Brewers baseball team.
He lives in Los Angeles with his wife, Catherine, and their four children.
"Following his confirmation, Mr. Beyer will bring to our board an even greater expertise in financial and investment leadership," said Michael Molina, deputy executive director of LAX.
Rothenberg resigned Dec. 2 as the airport commission's president due to his indirect ties with a longtime concession company at LAX. Rothenberg sits on the board of directors of California Pizza Kitchen and owns more than $1 million worth of stock with the company, which has several restaurants at LAX that are operated by HMS Host International.
Board of Airports Commissioners member Michael Lawson was named this month as the new president of the airport panel. Lawson, a lawyer, has served on the panel since 2005.