Skift Take

Michelle McKinney Frymire had only been in the top job for 12 months, but it probably felt a lot longer considering the turmoil the travel agency's been through. In theory, incoming CEO Patrick Andersen has a steadier ship to sail.

Michelle McKinney Frymire is stepping down as CEO of CWT on May 1, with the announcement of her departure as abrupt as her appointment one year ago when she replaced Kurt Ekert.

The travel management giant on Monday said it had now appointed president and chief commercial officer Patrick Andersen to take over as CEO, effective May 1. He will also serve on the company’s board of directors.

CWT said McKinney Frymire, who oversaw an extraordinary year at the company, including a brief spell in bankruptcy, simply decided to step down from her roles at the company.

She joined CWT in 2019, and was previously chief financial officer at Starwood Vacation Ownership and Delta Technology, as well as Continental Airlines and Delta Air Lines. She has also held senior executive positions at several private equity firms

“Leading CWT through such a critical phase in its evolution has been a great honor,” she said. “We have made substantial achievements during extraordinary times, and I am grateful to our global team and customers for their trust and supportive partnership. Now, with a strong financial foundation in place, CWT is positioned to accelerate its growth plan and I’m pleased to pass the baton to Patrick.”

Andersen has spent 13 years in international leadership roles at the company. Prior to his role as president and chief commercial officer, Andersen served as chief strategy officer and before that president of the Americas.

“As travel demand increases, CWT is well positioned to invest in and expand its industry leadership and global relationships,” he said. Importantly, I’ll continue our commitment to our core values and look forward to working with our board and the CWT team to enhance our technology, and further strengthen the travel and events services we provide to our customers around the world.”

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Tags: business travel, corporate travel, cwt, travel management

Photo credit: CWT is headquartered in Minneapolis, U.S. Tom Conway / Unsplash

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