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Our leadership

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CWT’s executive leadership team features more than 200 years’ combined experience in all facets of global travel, hospitality, logistics, technology, and the law. They have set a winning strategy that our clients and their employees can count on to help them keep moving and deliver travel management services that drive bottom line results.
 

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Michelle McKinney Frymire

CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER

Michelle FrymireMichelle McKinney Frymire is our Chief Executive Officer and was appointed to the position on 1 May 2021.  Immediately prior to this she was President, Strategy & Transformation and Chief Financial Officer where she led the company’s transformation, strategy, technology, human resource, procurement, and finance functions.

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.

Michelle currently serves on the Board of Directors for Family Gateway in Dallas, Texas, a non-profit assisting homeless children and their families, and is a Trustee at Greenhill School in Addison, Texas.  

She holds a bachelor’s degree in economics from Austin College, in Sherman, Texas, and an MBA from the McCombs School of Business at The University of Texas in Austin.

Patrick Andersen

PRESIDENT & CHIEF COMMERCIAL OFFICER

Patrick AndersenPatrick Andersen is President & Chief Commercial Officer, and is a member of the Executive Leadership Team.

He joined CWT in 2008 and has over 30 years’ experience in global travel & logistics, with various international leadership roles at Deutsche Post Worldwide and DHL.

Patrick also serves as a Non-Executive Member of the Board at Global Minnesota, and MNSNAP, and is on the Board of Overseers for the Carlson School of Management. He studied management at the London Business School.

Niklas Andréen

PRESIDENT & CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER

Niklas AndréenNiklas Andréen is President & Chief Operating Officer, and is a member of the Executive Leadership Team.

He joined CWT in 2018 and has over 20 years’ experience in global travel, tourism and technology, having held various international leadership roles at Travelport and consulting positions with Accenture, Connecta and Monitor Company. He has started two businesses and served as an Advisory Board Member of the Cornell University Center for Hospitality Research. Niklas currently serves as an independent board member of B&B Hotels Group, an international hotel chain. He holds an MSc in Business Administration from the Stockholm School of Economics and is a Wharton Executive Education Aresty Scholar.

Courtney Mattson

Acting Chief Financial Officer

Courtney MattsonCourtney Mattson is Acting Chief Financial Officer, and is a member of the Executive Leadership Team.

Courtney joined CWT in 2018 and has over 20 years’ experience in various finance leadership positions. Prior to CWT, she was Vice President, Treasurer for The Mosaic Company, a Fortune 500 company, and was with KPMG in their international consulting and tax practice.

Courtney actively serves United Way’s Wings Program.

Based in Minneapolis, Courtney holds a Masters in Business Administration from the Carlson School of Business and an undergraduate degree in Finance from the University of Wisconsin.

Lauren Aste

Chief Legal Officer

Lauren AsteLauren Aste is Chief Legal Officer, and is a member of the Executive Leadership Team.

She joined CWT in 2007 and has more than 20 years’ experience global travel and law, with various international leadership roles in Dechert LLP and Chadbourne & Parke LLP. Lauren also serves on the board of the World Childhood Foundation USA.

She received her Juris Doctor from New York University School of Law, holds an MA from New York University Graduate School of Arts and Science, and a BA from Wellesley College. She is admitted as a Solicitor to the Supreme Court of England and Wales and is a member of the New York and Connecticut State Bars.

Catherine Maguire-Vielle

Chief Human Resources Officer

Catherine Maguire-VielleCatherine Maguire-Vielle is Chief Human Resources Officer, and is a member of the Executive Leadership Team.

Catherine joined CWT in 2006 and has 20 years’ experience of global travel and the law, having previously been Assistant General Counsel, and a Solicitor with Clifford Chance.

Catherine gained a Bachelor of Laws from the University of Sheffield and completed her professional legal qualifications (LPC) at the College of Law, in York, England.
 

John Pelant

Chief Technology Officer

John PelantJohn Pelant is Chief Technology Officer, and is a member of the Executive Leadership Team.

He joined CWT in 1991 and has held various leadership positions, with both global and Americas remits, and is at the forefront of helping to deliver the company’s CWT 3.0 strategy. John is also a board member for the Orphaned Starfish Foundation, a member of the Defenders Circle at Thorn, and leads the CWT Responsible Business program in the Americas.

John holds a Bachelor of Science degree from St John’s University in Minnesota.
 

Kurt Ekert

SENIOR ADVISOR

Kurt EkertKurt Ekert was appointed Senior Advisor on 1 May 2021, prior to which he was the company’s President & CEO for five years.

He has 25 years’ experience in global travel, tourism and technology, with leadership and governance positions at Cendant, Continental Airlines, eNett, GTA, Orbitz Worldwide, and Travelport. Kurt also serves as Chairman of the U.S. Department of Commerce Travel & Tourism Advisory Board, and is a director of Passur Aerospace.  

He holds a B.S. from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, an MBA from the University of South Carolina, and saw active duty as a US army officer.

Chris Vukelich

Strategic Advisor

Chris VukelichChris Vukelich is Strategic Advisor to the CWT Executive Leadership Team. He acts as a mentor and advisor to leaders of strategic initiatives and select projects.

Chris joined CWT in 2017 and has over 40 years’ experience in global travel, hospitality and finance, with leadership positions at British Airways, Egencia, eNett, First USA Bank, Hilton International, and Travelport.

He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Business, Management and Marketing from Duquesne University, Pittsburgh.