The Darden School’s Trip Davis to Moderate the GBTA Masters Program Share

05 February 2012

The University of Virginia Darden School of Business today announced that Trip Davis, president of the Darden School Foundation and senior associate dean for external relations, will moderate the Global Business Travel Association (GBTA) Masters Program 6-7 February 2012 at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel in Washington, D.C.
The Masters Program, established more than 20 years ago, is a premier executive forum for leaders in the corporate travel industry. Davis will moderate sessions on the state of the travel industry, leadership, strategy and the business outlook for 2012. Keynote speakers for the program include:

  • Lou Gerstner, former chairman and CEO of IBM, “Leadership and Transformation”
  • George Lee, partner, co-head, Global Technology, Media and Telecom Group, Investment Banking, Goldman Sachs, “Disruptive World of Silicon Valley”
  • Professor Michael Porter, Harvard Business School, “Shared Values and Strategy”
  • Larry Sabato Jr., director, Center for Politics, University of Virginia, “Setting the Stage: 2012 Election Outlook – What the 2012 Vote Means for Business”

Davis will moderate the following panels:

  • “Game Changers in Distribution” with John Davis, CEO of RoomKey; Gregg Brockway, executive vice president and general manager of TripIt; and Adam Goldstein, co-founder and CEO of Hipmunk
  • “What’s Next? The Airline Industry Today and Tomorrow” with Daniel McKenzie, managing director and senior airline analyst, Rodman & Renshaw
  • “Travel Buyers Tee-Off on Distribution” with Donna Kelliher of Dominion, Nicki Leeds of Hess and Jim Sisco of Reed Elsevier

“GBTA’s Masters Program is a ‘mecca’ for thought leadership,” said Davis, “and I am honored to moderate the event, which will offer discussion and debate about the strategic landscape and innovative forces in the travel industry.”

A graduate of the Darden School, Davis co-founded two travel technology companies, Green Room, sold to iXL in 1998, and TRX Inc. After leading TRX from start-up to successful IPO in 2005, Davis became the company’s non-executive chairman. He is the eight-time moderator of the Masters Program, of which the advisory board includes senior executives from Adtrav, Amadeus (co-producer of the Masters Program), American Express, Concur, Dav El, Delta Air Lines, Egencia, TRX and Wyndham Worldwide. Twice, in 2002 and 2007, Business Travel News recognized Davis as one of the Top 25 most influential executives in the travel industry.

Davis has taught entrepreneurship at U.Va.’s Darden School and the McIntire School of Commerce, where he helped created the entrepreneurship track. He is passionate about developing leaders and creating new technologies and companies for the travel and tourism industry, which is the world’s largest sector.

In 2011, the GBTA Academy and the Darden School announced a partnership to create a custom Darden Executive Education program, designed for travel managers and directors who want to improve their capabilities to optimize processes, people and productivity. Led by Darden Professor Elliott Weiss, the first program will take place in March 2012 and includes sessions on process improvement, finance, strategic sourcing, communication and personal leadership.

GBTA is a business travel and meetings organization, with more than 5,000 members, who collectively manage more than $340 billion of global business travel and meetings expenditures annually. GBTA provides its network, comprised of 17,000 business and government travel and meetings managers and travel service providers, with networking events, news, education, professional development, research and advocacy.

The Darden School has strong ties to the travel industry and is a force in entrepreneurship and innovation through its Batten Institute. The Darden Business Incubator supports Darden MBA students who are interested in developing promising early-stage ventures. For example, in 2006, hotelicopter, an innovative cloud computing platform for online hotel search, was founded by two Darden graduates, Adam Healey (MBA ’05) and Charles Seilheimer (MBA ’05).

The founders, with the support of Davis, who became the lead investor and non-executive chairman of hotelicopter in 2007, raised $5 million in early-stage funding and built the industry-leading hotel search platform. In 2011, hotelicopter was sold to, the new venture started and owned by the six largest hotel companies in the world.


The University of Virginia Darden School of Business is one of the world’s leading business schools, offering MBA, Ph.D. and Executive Education programs. The unique Darden experience combines the case study method, the highest-ranked faculty whose research advances global managerial practice and business education, and a tight-knit learning environment to develop principled and complete leaders who are ready to make an impact.

About the University of Virginia Darden School of Business

The University of Virginia Darden School of Business delivers the world’s best business education experience to prepare entrepreneurial, global and responsible leaders through its MBA, Ph.D., MSBA and Executive Education programs. Darden’s top-ranked faculty is renowned for teaching excellence and advances practical business knowledge through research. Darden was established in 1955 at the University of Virginia, a top public university founded by Thomas Jefferson in 1819 in Charlottesville, Virginia.


Press Contact

Sophie Zunz
Director of Media Relations
Darden School of Business
University of Virginia