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Club Aspire strikes new partnership with Skybreak

Airport Lounge Development Expands Executive Leadership Team

ALD welcomes industry executives Chris Gwilliam, Jeffrey Denmon, and Laura Banse to the leadership team as part of company’s strategic growth plan

PLANO, TX – July 17, 2019 – Airport Lounge Development Inc. (ALD), the award-winning global provider of premium shared-use lounges, announced today the appointment of Chris Gwilliam, Jeffrey Denmon and Laura Banse to the company’s executive leadership team. Joining ALD as the Vice President of Business Development, Director of Operations, and Director of Facility Management respectively, Gwilliam, Denmon and Banse together bring more than five decades of experience within the airline and hospitality industries. Along with the recent opening of The Club JAX and the five additional lounge openings planned through the remainder of the year, ALD’s leadership additions signal the company’s continued commitment to its operations and growth strategy in the U.S. and globally.

“Chris, Jeffrey and Laura’s experience and proven expertise across the hospitality and airline industry further strengthen ALD’s leadership position in the industry,” said Nancy Knipp, Senior Vice President of ALD. “In their positions, each will play an integral role in ALD’s continued growth and our focus on enhancing the airport experience for millions of travelers.”

Joining ALD from Snap Kitchen, Chris Gwilliam serves as ALD’s Vice President of Business Development, responsible for leading and expanding all business development and client management activities. With roughly two decades of experience in the hospitality industry, he will lead ALD’s strategy to strengthen the competitive position of its global airport lounge network. Most recently as the Vice President of Strategy and Projects at Snap Kitchen, Gwilliam developed strategy for business development and improvement, and lead cross-functional project teams. He also served as Director of Operational Projects at Pret a Manager, the U.K. leader in freshly prepared grab and go food. Leading the Operational Services team, Gwilliam doubled the company’s hot food sales by developing a highly visible, efficient grab and go merchandizing unit and heated bakery counter, accompanied by an integrated hot food, marketing and training plan. He also grew company-wide coffee sales by over 10 percent through a coffee project introducing new equipment, new product development, marketing and a training program. 

Jeffrey Denmon has joined ALD as Director of Operations, overseeing the delivery of premium guest experiences through staffing, food and beverage at ‘The Club’ network of lounges. Denmon will also lead the establishment of product standards, as well as the development and implementation of new products and services. Denmon comes to ALD with over a decade of experience in brand development in the food and hospitality industry. Most recently, he served as the Vice President of Operations at CRU Food & Wine Bar, where he played an integral role in the successful opening of 19 restaurants and wine bars. Under Denmon’s leadership, CRU Food & Wine Bar was awarded twice in the “Best Airport Wine Bar” category for the Moodie Davitt FAB Awards for his concepts at the Denver International Airport and Dallas Fort Worth International Airport in 2013 and 2018, respectively. Denmon’s team was also nominated a third time for its project at Dallas Love Field Airport. 

Laura Banse joins ALD as the Director of Facility Management. Prior to ALD, Banse spent most of her career at American Airlines where she held various customer experience and service roles, most recently as the Senior Manager of Customer Experience Delivery. Banse brings with her over 20 years of experience spanning technology, marketing, airport construction, and lounge facility management. While in Customer Experience, Banse led the American Airlines Next Generation Airport automation and ticket counter design development and implementation. In this role, she was responsible for the successful rebranding of over 300 airports, working with airport design and facility departments, permitting, corporate real estate and senior executives at American and the airports. At ALD, Banse is responsible for the successful design and completion of all facility projects. She also oversees all of ALD’s new U.S. facility projects, refurbishments and expansions, as well as facility maintenance of all existing lounge locations.

As the U.S. leader in shared-use airport lounge operations, ALD has experienced rapid growth over the past three years with the addition of ten new locations and continued aggressive plans for further global expansion. ALD’s investment in new leadership positions and its lounge network expansion, coupled with a continued focus on existing clubs, highlights its commitment to elevating guests’ travel experiences.

ALD currently operates 18 global lounges, with planned expansions into new locations across the U.S. by the end of 2019.


  • The Club LAS at Las Vegas’ McCarran International Airport, Terminal 1, Concourse D 
  • The Club JAX at Jacksonville International Airport, main Concourse 
  • The Club at Pittsburgh International Airport expansion 

Coming soon

  • The Club CHS at Charleston International Airport 
  • The Club at Buffalo Niagara International Airport
  • A second location planned at Norman Y. Mineta San Jose International Airport, joining The Club SJC in Terminal A 
  • The Club MSY at Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport

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