Connections – September 28, 2015


Dear Friends and Colleagues

In today's issue of Connections we feature an interview with Linda Moore, President of Animer Consulting, LLC, whose twenty-five years of experience in bringing people together to find shared goals and common ground forms the base of her company's success.

She heads the AMAC team charged with developing our AMAC Training Institute. This arm of our organization has a primary goal to train new and current airport industry leaders who are sensitive to the benefits of, and need for, inclusion and diversity at all levels of the business.

The new AMAC Speakers Bureau will play a large role in our Training Institute. We are asking all members who are interested in sharing their expertise to sign up for the Bureau. Involvement will be a win-win for speakers, who will have the opportunity to present to audiences that include key current and future airport leaders, and for their audience, who will learn more about cultural agility and diversity management techniques to build a stronger work force.

Our Speakers Bureau is also looking for experts who can participate in our regional forums and at our national conference to talk about business marketing, access to capital, business finances, airport industry legislative updates, project bidding and estimating, and writing effective proposals, among others topics.

Please take a look at our questionnaire here and sign up today.

Shelby M. Scales

President and CEO



Joe_Waller_2014_600Spotlight on AMAC's Joe Waller

As Senior Vice President of Business Development for Westfield Concessions Management and former Vice President of Business Development for HMSHost Corp, Joe Waller knows what it takes to be a success in airport concessions.  He shares some advice for prospective ACDBEs.

"Start by asking a ton of questions," he says emphatically.  "Talk to the AMAC members who are already in airports.  They are exceptional people and good people. They are willing to share their experiences."

An airport concession is a tough business, he says.  "Don't be fooled by those who say 'you've got a captive market'.  It can actually be more difficult than having a store on the street.  You've got people moving quickly, spaces are much smaller, there are higher rents, TSA regulations, and business interruptions."

He suggests that the major concession companies are looking for partners that have drive, determination and experience in their business.  "We look for those who know their target audience and how to attract them, who have demonstrated strong business skills and are willing to work closely with the airport leadership and their partner," he said.
"You also have to be passionate about customer service and about the quality of your products," he adds.

Those interested in airport concessions should spend time in different airport terminals observing customers, concept designs, menus, service models, and speed of service.  They should attend airport industry conferences like the AMAC Business Diversity Conference and Regional Forums.  And, they should stay informed about new airport regulations, industry news, trends, and competitive business intelligence, the experts say.

"The biggest mistake that you can make is to be afraid to ask for advice and learn from the people who know the pitfalls," he said.  "Networking with the AMAC team will help you immeasureably."

Waller notes that Westfield is a development company in the business of creating customer experiences that allow their tenants to maximize their profitability.  He recommends that new concessionaires work closely with their design and construction team to create just the right atmosphere for their customers.  "The smartest people ask questions, then listen and absorb."

Know of a AMAC member with a dynamic or inspirational story?
Submit your recommendation here.



"The AMAC Training Institute will be the premier industry resource for education related to diversity and inclusion in both contracting and employment," AMAC member Linda Moore predicts.

Moore, who is head of management consulting firm Animer Consulting, LLC (, is an expert in building strategic alliances and creating teaming relationships. She is charged with leading the push to develop a structure and framework for AMAC's new Training Institute.

"The Institute's goal will be to insure that there is a future for business workforce and contracting diversity in the airport industry by educating and training industry leadership," she says.

Target audiences for the Institute will be airport decision makers and professionals, DBE Liaison Officers, large and small businesses in the aviation industry and professionals interested in career development and leadership skills, as well as those who want to understand the business of airports, Moore notes.

"We will be developing a series of ongoing training opportunities delivered in a variety of formats," she says. These will include regional training conferences, a speaker's bureau, regular webinars and periodic seminars and workshops. "We will cultivate cooperative agreements with AMAC member training organizations like mine to offer services," she added.

Ultimately, she says, the goal is to establish AMAC as a source of leadership talent in the airport industry. "We want to develop leaders who are aware of the importance of diversity and inclusion, who will fill executive level positions, who will become airport directors and commissioners," Moore says.



Airlines Rake In $5.5 Billion, Most Profitable Quarter Since 2007

Lower fuel costs and steady travel demand continue to boost the nation's airlines, which enjoyed the most profitable quarter since 2007.

Commercial airlines reported net income of $5.5 billion for the three months that ended in June, a 53% increase over the same period last year, according to financial data released Monday by the U.S. Department of Transportation.

That's the highest net income since the carriers collected $5.9 billion in the same period in 2007.

The latest financial data show the industry remains on firm footing after losing billions of dollars in the wake of the 2001 terrorist attacks and the 2008 recession.

The formula for the ninth straight profitable quarter: fuel costs that have dropped about 30% since the same period last year, combined with passenger totals that have jumped nearly 10%, and fees from checked bags and reservation changes that have climbed about 5%, according to federal data. Revenue from fares has remained nearly flat over the last year.

The most profitable airline in the second quarter was Delta Air Lines, with net income of $1.5 billion, up nearly 85% compared with the same period last year, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation.

The biggest profit increase was reported by American Airlines, which collected $1.05 billion in the second quarter, up nearly 300% compared with the same period last year, according to the federal data. American has become the world's largest carrier since announcing a merger with U.S. Airways in 2013.

Dayton Airport Begins Construction On $14M PSA Hangar

Dayton International Airport has broken ground on a $14 million expansion for PSA Airlines Inc., city of Dayton officials announced.

The new 69,000 square foot hangar will house aircraft and serve as an engine parts storage facility for the Dayton-based regional carrier. Construction of the hangar follows completion of a 7,500 square foot operations control center earlier this year. Work is expected be complete by spring 2016.

Officials said the new facility is expected to create space for 42 new jobs at PSA, which already employs more than 440 workers in Dayton, taking the airline's projected total local payroll to more than $20 million. New positions will include flight instructors, ground instructors, mechanics, supervisors, administrative support, clerical and parts personnel.

R.L. Fender Inc. was awarded a $4.1 million contract to complete the first phase of the project, which will include site work, utilities, building foundations and installation of electrical, mechanical and plumbing systems. The Dayton-based company also will install underground storage tanks for the hangar's fire suppression systems and reconfigure the parking lot.

Headquartered at the Dayton International Airport in Vandalia, PSA is a wholly owned subsidiary of American Airlines. The company will add 79 new aircraft to its fleet over the next two years.

DOT Awards Small Community Air Service Grants

The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) has committed to provide $5.5 million to help 11 small communities in 11 states develop solutions to improve their local air service needs under the Small Community Air Service Development Program.

This year, DOT received 49 eligible applications from 29 states. The communities that will receive grant awards this year are: Tallahassee, Florida ($750,000); Salmon, Idaho ($150,000); Presque Isle, Maine ($250,000); Traverse City, Michigan ($750,000); Great Falls, Montana ($385,000); Fargo, North Dakota ($500,000); Redmond, Oregon ($500,000); Sioux Falls, South Dakota ($500,000); College Station, Texas ($475,000); Pasco, Washington ($750,000); and Riverton, Wyoming ($481,810).

The communities that have been selected are contributing more than $4.6 million in local financial resources to complement the federal support, DOT representatives said.

Airline Consolidation Hits Smaller Cities Hardest

The Wall Street Journal

The U.S. airline industry has undergone a dramatic transformation in the past seven years. Whether that's brought pain or gain for fliers depends largely on where they live. A Wall Street Journal analysis of industry and government data shows that while airline service and prices have changed little across the country's major gateways as a whole, carriers have cut flights and raised fares at many smaller and medium-size airports.


CBC Panel members are pictured here flanked by Congressman John Lewis (far left) and Congressman Hank Johnson (far right). They included Congresswoman Marcia Fudge, Guest Speaker; Valton Barrett, Prolan Logistics, LLC; Wendell Stemley, National Association of Minority Contractors; Congresswoman Stacey Plaskett, Panel Moderator; AMAC's Shelby Scales; and Warren D. Miller, Mississippi Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster.

AMAC Represented on Distinguished CBC Panel in Tunica

AMAC President Shelby Scales recently participated on a distinguished panel of experts at the Congressional Black Caucus Political Education and Leadership Institute Policy Conference in Tunica, MS.
The panel focused on "Transportation & Infrastructure: Roads, Bridges, Ports, Trains & Airports: Jobs, Business and Career Opportunities."
To view a video of the presentation, click here Transportation & Infrastructure Seminar Video

Bhavesh PatelBhavesh A.Patel of Denver International Airport Receives Catalyst Award

Bhavesh A. Patel, representing the Denver International Airport, has been honored by AMAC with The 2015 Airport Concessions Innovation and Inclusion Award. This award honors an airport or corporation whose concessions program has met or exceeded their ACDBE goal over a period of not less than two years.

Patel received the award at the Catalyst Awards Luncheon during the recent 31st annual Airport Business Diversity Conference held in Ft. Lauderdale.   Patel joined Denver International Airport (DEN) in January 2015 as the Chief Revenue Officer, where he leads a business unit of approximately 120 employees that includes commercial, concessions and parking. He previously served as the director of airport concessions at Tampa International Airport (TPA).

Metropolitan Airports Commission Leader Jeff Hamiel Set To Retire Next Spring

After close to 40 years of working in aviation -- a stint that saw airline bankruptcies, a terror attack and a vast expansion of passenger travel -- the longtime executive director of the Metropolitan Airports Commission has announced plans to retire next spring.

AMAC member Jeff Hamiel, 68, began his career with the MAC in 1977 as the organization's first noise program manager, following a stint as a pilot in the Air Force. He rose through the ranks at the MAC and was named CEO/executive director in 1985.

Hamiel oversees the day-to-day operations of one of the nation's largest airport systems, which includes Minneapolis-St. Paul International, plus Airlake in Lakeville, Anoka County-Blaine, Crystal, Flying Cloud in Eden Prairie, Lake Elmo and St. Paul Downtown.

The MAC has 580 employees and a budget of about $300 million this year.

Traffic at MSP increased to nearly 35 million passengers last year, up from 8.4 million in 1977, when Hamiel joined the MAC. The number of flights increased in that period by 56 percent to 412,695 in 2014 -- the airport is now the 16th busiest in the United States.

Hamiel's last day will be May 16, 2016. A replacement is expected to begin work in mid-April.


CBC Reception photoAMAC at the 2015 CBC Foundation Celebration

Charlene Reynolds, AMAC Eastern Regional Chair, The Hon. Jim Clyburn of South Carolina, and AMAC Member Cassandra Jackson are pictured here at the African American Mayors Association Reception during the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation event in Washington, D.C..

Affordable Space Available

Are you in need of affordable office or conference room space close to Washington, DC and Reagan National Airport? We are here to help! AMAC members may take advantage of renting space directly from AMAC. Centrally located in beautiful Arlington, VA, convenient space is available for you to conduct business within the District of Columbia/Maryland/Virginia areas and beyond!

For more information, contact Anthony Barnes at or 703-414-2622.


Get Involved in the AMAC Committee of Your Choice

Choose an AMAC committee and join us! AMAC encourages all members to become actively engaged in the organization's activities by participating on a committee. Committees provide you with opportunities to participate in panels and forums with other business owners, airport executives, and corporate leaders who can become strategic partners, and more importantly potential clients. They also give you the opportunity to share your thoughts, suggestions, and innovations with our members, board, and staff.

The following committees are looking for volunteers:  Professional Development, By-Laws, Communications, Corporate Development, Elections/Nominations, Ethics, Awards, Finance, Government Affairs, and Membership. A description of each committee can be found here. Click and select Committees from the menu




AMAC Southeast Regional Forum

There is still time to register for the AMAC Regional Forum in Jackson, Mississippi on Thursday, October 15th.
Held at the Hilton Jackson, 1001 E County Line Rd, Jackson, Mississippi 39211-1817 (601-957-2800), the event will further AMAC's mission of providing the most up-to-date information and policy as it affects business in our nation's airports.
The Jackson Municipal Airport Authority (JMAA) will co-host this forum for approximately 200 attendees including Airport Operators, Airline Executives, Government Officials, Prime Contractors and M/W/DBE/SBE Contractors from across the region. The itinerary includes educational sessions on Doing Business with Airports; Regional Opportunities and Procurement; Navigating the Certification Process; Legislative Policy Updates and an Economic Forecast for the region.
Proceeds from the forum will support ongoing AMAC initiatives aimed at increasing the numbers of minorities and women represented in the airport industry and the AMAC Foundation's scholarship, career awareness and leadership development programs.
To register, click here!

IAA Plans Business Diversity Event for Professional Services

A Business Diversity Outreach Event for Professional Services will be held by the Indianapolis Airport Authority (IAA) Planning and Development Department on Thursday, October 1, from 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m..
DBE, MBE, WBE, and VBE professionals specializing in engineering, architecture, airport planning, geotechnical and environmental services fields are invited to attend a presentation on the unique aspects of airport work and opportunities to provide professional services to the IAA.
The event will be held at the IAA, 7800 Col. H. Weir Memorial Drive, in the IAA Board Room, 4th floor.

AMAC Western Region Economic Opportunity and Policy Forum to be Held in LA  

AMAC is pleased to announce that our 2015 Annual Economic Forum will be held in Los Angeles this year on December 2nd and 3rd.

On December 2nd, the day will begin with a Project LIFT event for college students to introduce them to the variety of career opportunities in the aviation industry. At the same time, Ken Weeden of KWA, a full service Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) Programs Consultant, will conduct an all-day training on site for Disadvantaged Business Enterprise Liaison Officers and staff.

Also that day, a scholarship fundraising golf tournament will be held at one of our local golf courses by the ocean.  In the evening, enjoy a networking reception, "A Taste of LAX", at a facility that overlooks the LAX runways.

On December 3rd, there will be a full day of workshops with speakers discussing topics, including: legislative updates, concession and construction opportunities at the airports in the western region, how to finance your business and steps to success in the airports. Students in the Western Region who have been selected for scholarships will receive their awards.

Highlighting the second day will be a behind-the-scenes tour of the newly renovated, award winning Tom Bradley International Terminal at LAX; Exhibitors' Booths; and an evening networking reception.  The events on the 3rd will be held at the Sheraton Gateway LAX Hotel, located on Century Blvd.

Information on how to register for this exciting event will be available shortly in this section of Connections.

Scholarships to Attend VA Transportation Conference Available

Applications are being accepted for two individuals (firm must be DBE certified) to attend an expense paid  (lodging (within state per diem and conference registration) 2015 Virginia Governor's Transportation Conference, "Transporting Virginia's New Economy".
The 2015 VA Governor's Transportation Conference will be held October 28 - 30, 2015, at the Virginia Beach Conference Center, 1000 19th Street, Virginia Beach, VA 23451.
Gov. Terry McAuliffe and Secretary of Transportation Aubrey Layne will be keynote speakers at this annual event.  Additional conference highlights are accessible at:
The 2015 Scholarship Application can be viewed here: 2015 VA Governor's Transportation Conference.  Completed applications with a brief narrative on why you should be selected to attend are due to the Business Opportunity and Development Center by 5:00 p.m., October 2, 2015.
Applications can be faxed, emailed or scanned to the telephone number/email address/fax number below. Incomplete applications will not be considered.
Business Opportunity and Workforce Development (BOWD) Center
1602 Rolling Hills Drive, Suite 110
Richmond, VA   23229
Phone:      804-662-9555
FAX:        804-662-9570
Toll Free: 1-888-508-3737

Ernest Huffman
Ernest Huffman

Airports Going Green Group Looks at Diversity

Is the phrase "Green Airports" an oxymoron? AMAC member Ernest Huffman Jr., airline representative and aviation economist at the Chicago O'Hare International Airport, doesn't think so. He firmly believes that airports, sustainability, diversity and community are all connected.

At an upcoming Airports Going Green Conference hosted by the Chicago Department of Aviation (CDA) and the American Association of Airport Executives (AAAE), Huffman will moderate a panel to discuss "Sustainability and Diversity."

The conference will be held on October 26-28 at the Holiday Inn Chicago-Mart Plaza, 350 W. Mart Center Dr., Chicago, IL 60654. For more information and to register, click

The Airports Going Green Conferenceis the industry's leading sustainability forum, bringing together aviation sustainability leaders, experts, and innovators from around the world. Session topics include airport, tenant, and stakeholder collaboration strategies; innovations in renewable energy and alternative fuels; waste and recycling initiatives; emerging technologies; and much more.

"The diversity panel format will be an Agree/Disagree concept which will allow a great deal of participation from the audience members" says Huffman. "I hope to get discussions going that push the diversity agenda at every AAAE conference."

Huffman will be joined on the panel by:

  • Shannetta Griffin - Senior Director of Planning and Development, Indianapolis Airport Authority
  • Meenakshi Singh - Former Deputy Director of Planning and Development, City of San Jose
  • Liza Milagro - Senior Sustainability Plan­ner, Dept. of Aviation-Hartsfield Jackson, Atlanta International Airport
  • David Comeaux - Assistant Vice President of Workforce Diversity & Inclusion, Dallas/ Fort Worth International Airport
  • Carol Bell - Vice President for B. Cole­man Aviation, Gary/Chicago International Airport

Help AMAC spread the word about upcoming events and opportunities. Email communications to Sydney Phillips to highlight your programs, events, and special announcements.


The AMAC Job Board is a nationwide listing of active and upcoming job openings at governments and contractors across the country. If you represent a public or private organization that would like to post an open position, please contact us at

For job postings click here.



The AMAC Bid Board is a nationwide listing of active and upcoming bid opportunities at governments across the country. If you represent a government organization that would like to post opportunities, please contact us at

For bid opportunities click here