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Dan Mann Honored as ‘Most Admired CEO’

September 17, 2020

Airport Leader Selected as an Outstanding Executive in Local Community

Dan Mann

Louisville Regional Airport Authority  Executive Director Dan Mann, A.A.E. was recently honored by Louisville Business First as a “Most Admired CEO” for this year in conjunction with its Business Impact Awards. The Most Admired CEO Program honors outstanding chief executives in the Louisville-area for their contributions to their company as well as the overall community. As Executive Director of the Airport Authority, Mann is responsible for oversight of the Louisville Muhammad Ali International Airport (SDF) and Bowman Field Airport (LOU) as well as serving as President of the Louisville Renaissance Zone Corporation.

“I had no idea I was nominated, so this came as a very nice surprise,” said Mann. “This recognition really speaks volumes about the quality of the team we have in place at our two airports. They are dedicated, smart individuals who work hard each day. They make it easy for me to do my job, and I thank them for that.”

Louisville Business First notes that those honored as a “Most Admired CEO” support innovation, serve as a role model and set the standard for their companies. They also count a commitment to financial success, quality, workplace wellness, diversity and philanthropy as additional traits found in these exceptional executives.

Since joining the Airport Authority in March 2018, Mann has lead both airports to success. SDF celebrated it best year in history with more than 4.2 million total passengers and a record of more than 30 nonstop destinations in 2019. Louisville’s airport was also recently named as the fourth busiest cargo airport in the world and second in North America by Airports Council International (ACI) World.

Mann also launched the SDF Next Project last year, which kicked-off a comprehensive terminal and airfield program aimed at investing more than $400 million in on-going improvements and enhancements in the coming years. In addition, the airport opened a Mother’s Room with multiple private-suites, added its innovative pet therapy program SDF WAGS and began the SDF Tours Program in partnership with Jefferson County Public Schools. Perhaps one of most visible impacts in Mann’s short tenure is the renaming of the airport to the Louisville Muhammad Ali International Airport (SDF) that included the rollout of a new logo and brand as part of these efforts. These initiatives under Mann’s guiding hand are all part of SDF’s efforts to provide a positive, impactful welcome to the city.

Almost immediately following his arrival in Louisville, Mann made a commitment to the community. In a matter of weeks as its new Executive Director, he initiated the SDF Cares Program that encourages and fosters staff to volunteer their time including at off-site Giving Days coordinated by the Airport Authority. In addition, key partnerships were formed with local groups and the inaugural Wings for Autism events took place at Louisville’s airport. Plus, through a partnership with Louisville Grows, 1,000 trees were donated to area residents around both airports last year as part of Mann’s efforts to be a good neighbor.

Under Mann’s leadership, the community continued to take note of the airport’s vital role and lasting impact. In 2019, The Louisville Muhammad Ali International Airport was named Partner of the Year by Louisville Tourism and Greater Louisville, Inc. presented its Silver Fleur-de-List Award to the Airport Authority in conjunction with the Louisville Regional Airlift Development (LRAD) for improving direct air service.

As one of Louisville Business First’s honorees, Mann will be featured in an upcoming edition of the publication as well as recognized at a formal event in mid-November. All nominations for “Most Admired CEO” were reviewed and honorees were selected by the publisher and editors of Louisville Business First. To learn more about the Most Admired CEO Program, visit