The Leading Hotels of the World (LHW) has named stand-in CEO Shannon Knapp as the group’s new President and Chief Executive Officer, effective immediately.
An executive committee comprised of seven LHW hoteliers appointed the Senior Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer of more than five years to the top role, a position she has held on an interim basis since April after Ted Teng stood down from the post after 10 years leading the company.
“Shannon is a strong, effective and values-driven leader who has been a driving force of strategy and innovation at the company since she joined in 2013,” said Andrea Kracht, Chairman, Executive Committee, The Leading Hotels of the World and Proprietor, Baur au Lac.
“Having held executive positions at LHW for over six years, Shannon has a deep understanding of our business,” Kracht said. “She also has extensive experience in the broader luxury travel landscape. The Executive Committee is highly confident that under her direction, LHW will continue to lead the independent luxury hospitality industry.”
Knapp said she was humbled to take on the position as a permanent basis.
“Created by hoteliers, for hoteliers more than 90 years ago, LHW has remained dedicated to empowering the success of its independent hotel members and ensuring this extraordinary segment of luxury hospitality continues to thrive. I am passionate about this mission and inspired to collaborate with the amazing 430 hotels in our collection and the extraordinary LHW employees to carry that mission forward.”
Since assuming leadership responsibilities as interim CEO, Knapp steered the company through a successful leadership transition and began to accelerate the momentum of the company in nearly all critical areas of the business. During this time, she also established LHW’s strategic vision and business strategy for the new future of the company.
Knapp brings a wealth of luxury travel experience from her 15 years at American Express, where she had the opportunity to work in both the Corporate and Leisure travel divisions, managing luxury travel programs, partners and benefits for Platinum and Centurion Card members and travel consortia business.
Kracht added that Knapp’s appointment introduces a “fresh perspective on our business that will redefine the role of LHW in empowering the success of its members”.