Speakers and moderators from the 2023 conference included:

British Airways

Sean Doyle was appointed Chief Executive of British Airways in October 2020, and Chairman in April 2021. He sits on the management committee of BA’s parent company, International Airlines Group. 

Sean first joined British Airways in 1998, where he began his career as a financial analyst. During his time at British Airways Sean held a number of senior roles in London and the US, and in 2016 was appointed to the airline’s executive leadership team as Director of Network, Fleet & Alliances.

Prior to his appointment as Chief Executive of British Airways, Sean was Chief Executive of Aer Lingus from January 2019.

Sean is married with a son and is a graduate of University College Cork.

Transport Correspondent
Financial Times
SVP Head of Public Affairs UK

Part of the Airbus UK Executive Team, Oriel leads external engagement in the UK across the three business divisions, Commercial, Defence and Space and Helicopters.

Before joining Airbus she was the UK’s first Deputy Trade Commissioner Europe, a British diplomat and senior civil servant advising successive Governments on tech security, international trade, investment, economic policy and the EU.

She speaks fluent French, German and Dutch and is a Trustee of the Franco-British Council.

Director for Aviation
Department for Transport

David Silk is the Director, Aviation in the Department for Transport, having previously been the department’s Director for Airports, Infrastructure and Commercial Interventions. He is responsible for all aspects of aviation policy. Prior to joining DfT, David’s career was in HM Treasury, where he had a number of senior roles, including on welfare, housing, local growth and education spending as well as Private Secretary to the Chief Secretary to the Treasury. He has significant experience in policy, strategy and commercial roles.

Chief Customer and Operating Officer (EVP)
Virgin Atlantic

Corneel Koster is Chief Customer & Operating Officer at Virgin Atlantic, responsible for the delivery of the unique customer experience of Virgin Atlantic, as well as its safe and reliable operations. Corneel leads all customer facing teams, including Airports, Cabin Crew, Customer Centres, Clubhouses and Inflight Services to the operational teams, including Engineering & Maintenance, Flight Operations, Operations Control, Crew Logistics and the Safety & Security function. Corneel expanded his responsibilities from his previous role as Chief Customer Officer at Virgin Atlantic. Corneel brings to the team over 23 years’ experience in aviation, including leadership roles with some of our closest partners. Before he returned to Virgin Atlantic in 2019, he was Delta Air Lines’ Senior Vice President - Europe, Middle East, Africa and India, overseeing sales and partnerships in the EMEAI region while coordinating the operational aspects and the service delivery to Delta’s customers, working closely with Delta’s joint venture partners Air France-KLM, Alitalia and Virgin Atlantic. Before joining Delta, as Chief Operating Officer for Grupo Aeromexico Corneel was responsible for the operational excellence and service delivery of the Mexican airline and its regional feeder airline, as well as the company’s cargo and ground-handling subsidiaries. Corneel has also held several commercial leadership roles in the passenger, ground handling and cargo businesses of Air France-KLM, and before that KLM. Corneel serves as a Board Member for Virgin Atlantic Airways Limited and as a Board member of BritishAmerican Business. Originally from the Netherlands, Corneel holds an MSc (drs.) in Business Administration from the University of Groningen in the Netherlands. Corneel has UK settled status and lives on the south coast of the UK with his wife and three sons.

Managing Director
Dnata UK
Group Director of Consumers and Markets
Civil Aviation Authority

Paul was appointed to the board as Group Director of Consumers and Markets on 24 May 2018. He became interim joint Chief Executive in April 2023. Before joining the Civil Aviation Authority he was Head of Regulatory Strategy and Policy at the Payment Systems Regulator since January 2016. Paul has also previously held the position of Chief Executive of the Australian Energy Market Commission. Prior to that he worked on economic regulation issues as a consultant and in a number of roles at Postcomm and Ofgem.

Group Executive, Brand Integrity & Ethics, Global Innovation Lead

A creative strategist and innovator, Chris has over 35 years of experience in the field of branding and innovation. Having worked with and created some of the world’s most famous brands, his particular area of expertise is combining consumer insights with creative strategy. His work on customer experience innovation includes breakthrough methodology on customer-centric and insight-led design thinking that has created exponential value for brands in product, service and experience development. A particular expert in travel & leisure, over his career Chris has led branding and innovation assignments for many airlines including: British Airways, American Airlines, Air Malta, Virgin Atlantic, South African Airlines, Saudi Arabian Airlines, Qatar Airlines, Iberia and Wizz Air. He has also worked with Hilton Hotels, Princess Cruises, the Palm (UAE) and other nation branding assignments including Singapore, Bhutan, Mexico, Great Britain and Tourism Australia. His experience also includes working through the International Olympic Committee on branding work for the Sydney 2000 Olympics the London 2012 Olympic & Paralympic Games. In addition, he has experience working with iconic brands such as GE, Avis, Nespresso, 3M, Unilever, Microsoft, Google, General Motors and GSK. An advocate for leadership and integrity through ethics, Chris leads the global Interbrand practice focussing on ESG and Social Impact consulting.

Chris has been an innovation judge for the global Consumer Electronics Show (CES) and for WARC Cannes Lions. He is a practitioner lecturer at SCAD (Savannah College of Art and Design), Georgetown University, Rutgers University, George Washington University School of Business and Bournemouth University. Chris is a graduate of GWU and the London School of Economics, and is a UK and US national.

Global Chief Strategy Officer

As Global Chief Strategy Officer, Manfredi leads the development of Interbrand’s approach and thought leadership and contributes to defining the firm's business strategy. He also advises the leadership of a number of global clients.

In over twenty years with Interbrand, Manfredi has consulted some of the world's most admired organisations and iconic brands, strengthening their brands’ role as powerful growth catalysts. His experience encompasses a wealth of high-profile business challenges across diverse industries, including fashion, luxury, telecommunications, manufacturing, financial services and automotive.

Manfredi has co-authored the critically acclaimed, long-selling book, ‘Meta-luxury: Brands and the Culture of Excellence’ (Palgrave Macmillan, 2012), reflective of his vast experience in the luxury space. He is a key contributor to Interbrand's Best Global Brands study.

Manfredi has been featured on international media such as the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the Economist, the Financial Times, and BBC World. He is also a keen conference speaker, having been invited at events across continents, and lectures regularly at various under-, postgraduate and executive courses.

For over a decade Manfredi served as the CEO of Interbrand's Italian business. Under his leadership, the office multiplied its size, establishing a reputation for excellence, developing young talent and delivering award-winning transformational work for world-class clients.

In 2021 Manfredi was invited to join the Executive Board of the Moleskine Foundation, a non-profit organisation focusing on creativity for social change.

He currently lives in London with his family.

Chief Operating Officer

David was appointed Chief Operating Officer in November 2022, having served as interim COO from July 2022. David joined easyJet in September 2016 as the airline’s Chief Pilot, and in December 2017 took up the position of Director of Flight Operations, taking responsibility for the safe and efficient operation of the airline’s flights across Europe. David previously served as interim COO in 2019, when he oversaw operations across the airline and delivered significant improvements in operational performance. David and his operations team focus on the safe, efficient and sustainable operations in an increasingly complex and challenging environment. Prior to joining the airline David was Chief Flight Operations Officer at Wizz Air. His long career in aviation has taken him around the world including Australia and the Middle East. He is a graduate of the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst.

Executive Officer
Green Finance Institute

Ingrid Holmes is the Executive Director of the Green Finance Institute and Chair of the UK’s Green Technical Advisory Group, which is advising the Government and Minister John Glenn on designing and implementing a green taxonomy in the UK. Ingrid has 20 years of experience working on environmental policy and sustainable finance. She was a Member of the European Commission’s High Level Expert Group on Sustainable Finance and ran the Secretariat for the Green Finance Taskforce, which led to the establishment of the Green Finance Institute. Ingrid has a background working in financial services (Federated Hermes and Climate Change Capital), NGOs (E3G), Government (DEFRA) and the UK Parliament. Her abiding passion is her focus on scaling investment into climate change solutions to address the climate crisis. Ingrid has a BSc in Biological Sciences (Hons Zoology) from the University of Edinburgh and an MSc in Environmental Technology from Imperial College London.

VP Strategy

Chief Strategy Officer at ZeroAvia, leading on business, product and market strategy, government programmes, external affairs and communications Prior to ZeroAvia, James was Chief Strategy Officer at the Aerospace Technology Institute and also enjoyed a career as a management and engineering consultant across several industrial sectors.

Director of Aerospace Technology and Future Programmes

As Director of Aerospace Technology and Future Programmes Alan is responsible for the formulation of the global technology strategy and delivery of the supporting programmes to underpin product development and enable new business opportunities. Previous engineering leadership roles included EVP, Future Programmes, Engineering Director Rolls-Royce Deutschland and Chief Engineer V2500. He joined Rolls-Royce in 1987 from NEI Parsons. Alan is a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering, Institution of Mechanical Engineers and Royal Aeronautical Society. External appointments include non-Executive Director of the Henry Royce Institute and Aerospace Technology Institute and Chair of the Derby Branch of the Rolls-Royce Heritage Trust.

Chief Executive Officer
Gatwick Airport

Stewart Wingate joined Gatwick Airport as Chief Executive Officer in December 2009. Stewart joined Gatwick Airport from BAA Airports Limited where he spent five years in senior management roles at several airports. He was Managing Director of London’s Stansted Airport (2007-2009), Chief Executive Officer of Budapest Airport (2005-2007) and Customer Services Director of Glasgow Airport (2004-2005). Stewart holds a masters degree in Business Administration with distinction and a first-class honours degree in electrical and electronic engineering. He is a Chartered Engineer and a Fellow of the Institute of Engineering and Technology.

Chief Executive Officer

Martin was appointed Chief Executive Officer of NATS, the UK’s leading provider of Air Traffic Management services in May 2015. NATS employs around 4500 staff and provides air traffic control services 24 hours day, 7 days a week in UK and North Atlantic airspace for over 2 million flights per year. NATS also provides air traffic services and expertise to countries and airports around the world.

Previously, Martin was the Managing Director of Operations at NATS responsible for delivering NATS’ regulated UK air traffic business.

Prior to joining NATS Martin worked for the Lockheed Martin Corporation where he was Managing Director of its £350M UK Civil business. In this role Martin was responsible for Lockheed Martin business with UK government across a wide range of critical national services, as well as being responsible for Lockheed Martin’s global air traffic business.

Martin’s career started with the European Space Agency working in orbital mechanics. Since then, Martin has worked in the aviation domain for more than 20 years across a number of companies leading large multinational teams across Europe, the US, and Asia with customers that include central government departments, military organisations and air navigation service providers.

Martin holds a Master’s Degree in Aerospace Systems Engineering from the University of Southampton.

Director General
Border Force

Phil Douglas is the Director General of Border Force at the Home Office. Phil has held a variety of senior roles across the Home Office, including in national security, Border Force (where he was Regional Director for Heathrow Airport), enforcement and asylum policy. Outside the Home Office, he has also worked at the Ministry of Justice and at the former UK Representation to the European Union. Phil started his civil service career as an immigration officer at Heathrow Airport.


Mr Clark has been in the civil aviation business for his whole professional career, having joined British Caledonian in 1972.

In 1975, he moved to Gulf Air in Bahrain and subsequently in 1985 to Dubai where he became a member of the founding team of Emirates as Head of Airline Planning.

In 2003, he became President of Emirates Airline, driving the company’s continued rapid growth. Until COVID-19 hit the world in early 2020, Emirates was serving over 150 destinations in 85 countries with a fleet of 270 wide-bodied aircraft comprising the iconic Airbus A380s, and advanced Boeing 777s. Remaining at the helm, he guided the airline through its recovery from the pandemic.

Between April 1998 and March 2008, Mr Clark was also the Managing Director of Sri Lankan Airlines, the latter position resulted from Emirates' acquisition in April 1998 of a major stake in the airline with full management control.

Mr Clark is Chairman of the Emirates Airline Foundation, which he was instrumental in founding. The Foundation strives to improve the welfare of disadvantaged children of the world.

He holds a degree in Economics from London University and is a Fellow of the Royal Aeronautical Society. He also holds honorary doctorate degrees from the Universities of Warwick, Middlesex and Northumbria in the United Kingdom.

In the 2014 Queen’s New Year’s Honours list, Mr Clark was invested as a Knight of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (KBE) for services to British prosperity and to the aviation industry.

In November 2009, he was conferred an “Officier de la Legion d’Honneur” by the French government for services to transport and aviation, and he holds the 2009 Gold Award from the Royal Aeronautical Society for his contribution to civil aerospace. At the 2011 Airline Business and Flightglobal Achievement Awards, he was recognised as “Leader of the year”.

In 2013, he received the Center for Aviation (CAPA) Legends award and was inducted into the CAPA Hall of Fame. Mr Clark was named CAPA Airline Executive of the Year in 2022 for his individual influence on the aviation industry, strategic thinking, and innovative direction for the growth of Emirates and the industry.

In 2023, Future Travel Experience presented Mr Clark with its first-ever FTE Visionary Award in recognition of his influence in shaping the industry; and Air Transport World presented Mr Clark with the Lifetime Achievement Award.

Senior Vice President Network & Mobility
Shadow Aviation Minister
Labour Party
Regional Vice President, Europe

Rafael advocates for the interest of IATA’s members and strengthening the relationships with aviation stakeholders across the Europe and Central Asia region. Rafael joined IATA in 2005 as Country Manager for Argentina, Uruguay and Paraguay and has held various positions in the association since then. Rafaels aviation expertise also includes a decade at DHL in the Americas and experience working for a range of air transport companies in South America. Rafael holds a Master in Positive Leadership and Strategy from IE Business School and a Bachelor of Science in Economics from the University of the Pacific. He has lived in numerous countries including Argentina, Ecuador, Spain, United Kingdom and the United States. He speaks Spanish and English.

President United Kingdom, Ireland & Nordic region

Maria Laine is president of Boeing in the United Kingdom, Ireland and the Nordic region. In this role, Laine leads and oversees all of Boeing’s business activities in these countries, working from the Boeing UK office in Central London. In collaboration with Boeing’s growing number of colleagues, customers and partners in the UK, Ireland and the Nordic region, Laine’s focus is to grow the company’s local presence and business in the region.

Laine has three decades of global experience at Boeing, including working in many of Boeing’s key European markets, along with Asia, Australia and the United States.

Most recently, Laine was vice president, International Business Development, for Boeing’s Defense, Space & Security and Global Services business units. In this role, Laine led global business development and industrial partnerships for Boeing’s defense, space and government services portfolios as well as acting as the Defense, Space & Security (BDS) liaison with Boeing Global. Previously, Laine was vice president of International Strategic Partnerships where her team developed and implemented BDS industrial participation programs in support of international campaigns, built alliances and partnerships to enable future growth in existing and new markets, and partnered with business units to develop organic growth in international markets.

Prior to that, Laine served as vice president of Boeing Northern Europe, where she expanded business growth and the company’s presence in the region, strengthened industrial and technology partnerships and implemented corporate citizenship projects of strategic importance. She also served as the managing director of Boeing Netherlands, B.V. in addition to being on the board of directors of Boeing’s key entities in the region.

Laine has also been responsible for strategic alliances and expansion of Boeing’s defense business in Asia with an emphasis on the formation of strategic partnerships with local industry as an avenue for growth. Laine served in the same capacity in Europe to include working market strategy for the region.

In addition, Laine has served in leadership roles in Europe and Australia where she grew Boeing’s services and sustainment business. Prior to that, she served as the industrial participation country manager for the Nordic region and Switzerland and also worked in Helsinki on the Finnish F/A-18 program. In these roles, she led the development and successful execution of Boeing’s industrial participation programs valued at more than $5 billion.

Prior to joining Boeing in 1993, Laine worked at Pacific Intertrade Corporation in California, focused on launching small-and-medium-sized U.S. companies into the Asian market. She also worked in Washington, D.C. at the U.S. Department of Commerce, International Trade Administration as the assistant desk officer for the Nordic region, and at the U.S. Embassy in Helsinki on the commercial desk.

Laine has an MBA from the Thunderbird School of Global Management and a bachelor’s degree in political science and international relations from the University of California Santa Barbara. Laine was born in Finland, spent her childhood in Sweden and moved to the United States in 1975. Her native languages include Finnish, Swedish and English, and she is also proficient in French and Spanish.

Secretary of State for Transport
Managing Director
London Stansted Airport

Gareth was appointed Managing Director of London Stansted Airport in October 2022. Gareth joined MAG from Transport for London (TfL), where he spent 19 years. His most recent roles were Deputy Commissioner and Chief Customer and Strategy Officer, which saw him lead TfL’s recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic. During his time at TfL, Gareth was also Managing Director of Surface Transport, Chief Operating Officer of London Rail and Director of Strategy and Service Development for London Underground, managing around £5bn of revenue and a workforce of more than 3,000 people, as well as maintaining key stakeholder relationships including with the Mayor of London. Prior to TfL Gareth worked for WS Atkins the infrastructure consultant and started his career as a customer operations graduate trainee for Thames Water.

Aviation Partner
Gardiner & Theobald LLP

Jason has over 33 years of experience in the development and construction industry. He is currently Vice Chair of the British Aviation Group, the primary trade association for the UK airport development supply chain, a member of the Aviation Export Board bringing industry and government together on development matters and a specialist advisor to the Trade Advisory Group for the Department of Trade and Industry. Jason is Aviation sector Partner at Gardiner & Theobald LLP and his team provides development, cost and project management services internationally.

Sustainable Aviation Manager

Africa Abajas has recently joined ICF International as Sustainable Aviation Manager. Before she worked in Vertis Environmental Finance, responsible for running and developing Vertis’ aviation business line, aviation strategy and product range. Prior to Vertis, she worked for the Spanish Civil Aviation Authority as policy advisor. She started her professional career in an airline association, serving as liaison between clients and policymakers and regulators. For the last 15 years her professional career has been focused on environmental policies and regulations that apply to aviation, such as Emission Trading System (EU ETS and UK ETS ), the ICAO Global Offsetting Scheme (CORSIA) and Sustainable Aviation Fuels (SAF).

Chief Strategy Officer
Heathrow Airport

Chris was appointed Chief Strategy Officer in September 2021. Previously he was Heathrow’s Strategy, Regulation and Customer Director. During his 20-year career at Heathrow, Chris has held a number of senior roles across Digital strategy, Commercial Planning, Commercial Passenger Services, Airline Business Development, Retail Operations and Expansion. Prior to Heathrow Chris held a number of roles in the retail and hospitality industries

5654 & COMPANY

Robert helps clients sharpen their storytelling to shape public debate. He is an award-winning former foreign and political correspondent for BBC and Sky News, working in Washington DC, Brussels and Westminster on both radio and television. In 2018 he became the national spokesperson for the British railway industry, regularly appearing on BBC radio and TV, Sky, ITV and Channel 4 News. He helped hone and deliver the industry’s messaging to customers, business and government before and during the pandemic. Robert sits on the Advisory Board of the public services think tank ‘Reform’, is a Leader in Residence at UCLAN and a Senior Fellow at the John Schofield Trust.

Travel Correspondent

Katy is the BBC’s Transport Correspondent. A versatile multimedia broadcaster and journalist, she breaks and reports transport stories for a general audience. Katy has spent the past decade of her career working at the BBC, joining the team of national reporters after spells in Southampton and in Hull. She was a Business Correspondent before moving to the Transport beat 2 years ago. During this time, the aviation industry’s emergence from the era of Covid restrictions has been one of the key stories. Katy’s work includes regular reporting for the BBC’s flagship news bulletins, BBC Breakfast, and contributing to the BBC website. She occasionally appears as a presenter on BBC Breakfast, and has presented Radio 4 Today’s Business section.

Further speakers to be announced soon