Minneapolis, 21 December, 2021: CWT, the Business-to-Business-for-Employees (B2B4E) travel management platform, announces the appointment, effective 13 December, of the new Board of Directors of CWT’s parent company, CWT Travel Holdings, Inc., following the successful financial restructuring of the company in November 2021.
The new board brings a strong blend of travel, hospitality, technology, and commercial expertise. Jim Abrahamson will serve as Board Chair and is joined by Alan Bowers, Ellen Keszler, Tom O’Toole, Donna Wells, Theresa Wise, and Michelle McKinney Frymire.
“On behalf of the new board at CWT, I am delighted to say we are all very excited about joining such a great global company at this time of incredible long-term prospects for the travel-industry,” said Jim Abrahamson, Chair, CWT Travel Holdings, Inc. “We look forward to building upon CWT’s strong foundation and tremendous reputation of outstanding service to its worldwide clients and travellers, as well as its valued supplier partners, by helping CWT’s highly talented leadership team accelerate the company’s growth through its industry leading service and technology platform.”
Jim Abrahamson – Board Chair
Jim currently serves as Non-Executive Chair of the Board of VICI Properties, Inc. (NYSE: VICI) and as a Non-Executive director on the boards of CorePoint Lodging, Inc. (NYSE: CPLG), and BrightView Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: BV). He was also formerly a Non-Executive director at La Quinta Holdings (NYSE: LQ), as well as a former member of the Board of Directors at InterContinental Hotels Group (LON: IHG).
Jim previously served as Chairman and CEO at Interstate Hotels & Resorts and, prior to Interstate, as President, The Americas at IHG, before which he served as a senior member of corporate leadership at Hyatt Corporation (NYSE: H), Marcus Corporation (NYSE: MCS) and Hilton Worldwide (NYSE: HLT). He is also a former Chairman the Board of both the U.S. Travel Association and the American Hotel & Lodging Association, and he also served as President of the Marriott International National Association (MINA) owners association.
Alan Bowers – Audit & Finance Committee Chair
Alan is currently a Non-Executive director on the boards of CorePoint Lodging, Inc. (NYSE: CPLG), Ocwen Financial Corp (NYSE: OCN) and Walker & Dunlop Inc. (NYSE: WD). He was also formerly a Non-Executive director at La Quinta Holdings (NYSE: LQ).
Alan is a former President, Chief Executive Officer and a board member of Cape Success, LLC, (a private equity backed staffing service and information technology solutions business), MarketSource Corporation (a marketing and sales support service firm) and MBL Life Assurance Corporation. He has been a certified public accountant since 1978 and served as staff auditor, audit partner and managing partner, serving a diverse client base during his tenure at Coopers & Lybrand, L.L.P.
Ellen Keszler – HR & Compensation Committee Chair
Ellen is a Non-Executive director on the boards of Sojern (the global travel data and media services company) and Shep (the travel data analytics and communications business). She was formerly a Non-Executive board director with Extended Stay America (NASDAQ: STAY), Farelogix, North Texas Public Broadcasting, Pros Holdings Inc. (NYSE: PRO), Travel and Transport, Yapta, and Routehappy.
Ellen has been President and Chief Executive Officer of Clear Sky Associates, a management and strategy consulting firm focused on the technology and travel industries, since 2008. She is a former President of Travelocity Business, Senior Vice President (North American Division) of Sabre Travel Network, and previously held various finance roles at Sabre Holdings, American Airlines, and JCPenney.
Michelle McKinney Frymire – Chief Executive Officer
Michelle McKinney Frymire has been CWT’s Chief Executive Officer since May 2021, prior to which she was President, Strategy & Transformation and Chief Financial Officer, where she led the company’s transformation, strategy, technology, human resource, procurement, and finance functions. She currently serves on the Board of Directors for Spirit Realty Capital (NYSE: SRC).
Michelle joined CWT in 2019 and has over 20 years’ travel industry experience. Her leadership has spanned a broad range of functions with notable leadership roles as the CFO at Starwood Vacation Ownership, TruGreen LawnCare, and Service King Collision Repair. She began her career at American Airlines, and served in senior financial leadership positions with both Continental Airlines and Delta Air Lines. In addition, she held senior executive positions at several private equity portfolio companies managing a broad range of responsibilities.
Tom O’Toole – Nominating & ESG Committee Chair
Tom is a Non-Executive board director of Alliant Energy Corp. (NASDAQ: LNT). He was formerly a Non-Executive board director with Extended Stay America (NASDAQ: STAY), LSC Communications Inc., cxLoyalty, and Pegasus Solutions, Inc.
Tom is Associate Dean for Executive Education and Clinical Professor of Marketing at Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management, and has been a Senior Advisor at McKinsey and Company since 2017, immediately prior to which he was Chief Marketing Officer of United Airlines and President of its MileagePlus loyalty business. He was previously the Chief Marketing Officer and Chief Information Officer of Hyatt Hotels Corporation. In 2016, he was appointed, and then reappointed, by the US Secretary of Commerce to the Board of Brand USA, the public-private corporation charged with increasing travel to the United States.
Donna is a Non-Executive director on the boards of Walker & Dunlop Inc. (NYSE: WD), Mitek Systems (NASDAQ: MITK), and Betterment. She was previously a Non-Executive board member with Apex Technology Acquisition Corporation (now NASDAQ: AVPT), and Boston Private Bank (now NASDAQ: SIVB).
Donna was previously President, Chief Executive Officer and a board member of Mindflash Technologies, a B2B software company. Prior to Mindflash, she served in senior corporate leadership roles at financial services and FinTech leaders Charles Schwab (NYSE: SCHW), Intuit (NASDAQ: INTU), and Mint.com. Donna began her career at American Express (NYSE: AXP), where she launched the Corporate Platinum and Gold Rewards Cards, and led US Marketing and the B2B Affiliate business for the Expedia Group (NASDAQ: EXPE).
Theresa is a Non-Executive director on the boards of Acropolis Infrastructure Acquisition Corp. (NYSE: ACRO), VIASAT Inc. (NASDAQ: VSAT), Midcontinent Independent System Operator, and IMPINJ Inc. (NASDAQ: PI) and was previously a Non-Executive director for TCF Financial Corp.
Theresa has been principal consultant and managing partner of Utaza, LLC. since 2016, prior to which she served as Chief Information Officer and Senior Vice President of Delta Air Lines, and held the same role at Northwest Airlines before that.
CWT is a Business-to-Business-for-Employees (B2B4E) travel management platform. Companies and governments rely on us to keep their people connected – anywhere, anytime, anyhow. Across six continents, we provide their employees with innovative technology and an efficient, safe and secure travel experience backed by our three core promises: to simplify corporate travel, to connect to unlock possibilities, and to move forward, together.