2021 ONYX WOTM Woman of the Year
ONYX 2021 Woman of the year
Senior Director of Public Affairs
Greater Orlando Aviation Authority
Carolyn M. Fennell is responsible for external and internal media and public relations at Orlando International Airport and Orlando Executive Airport. In her role as primary spokesperson, she oversees all domestic and international media relations, including crisis communications for both airports. At the Greater Orlando Aviation Authority, she has held various roles in international marketing, customer service and community outreach.
Before joining the Aviation Authority, she held positions as a production assistant to Peter Jennings for ABC News in London and a publicist for Walt Disney World. Among her numerous awards are Public Relations Professional of the year by the Florida Public Relations Association, “Orlando Business Journal” Business Woman of the Year and Airports Council of North America’s Ted Bushelman Legacy Award for Creativity and Excellence.
Fennell served on the Jacksonville Branch Board of Directors for the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta and was twice appointed chair of the Board in 2013 and 2016. She previously served on the Executive Committee and Board of Directors for the Orlando/Orange County Convention & Visitors Bureau, now Visit Orlando. In the airport industry, she served on the Airports Council International–North America Marketing and Communications Steering Committee and previously twice Chairman of that committee.
In 2015, the Florida Commission on the Status of Women awarded Fennell for Outstanding Contributions and Services to the Community. In September of 2010, she was inducted into the Central Florida Hospitality Hall of Fame by the University Central Florida Rosen College of Hospitality. She currently serves on the Boards of the Valencia College Foundation, Central Florida Hotel Lodging Association, Orlando Museum of Art, Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra and Valencia Community College Foundation. Fennell was previously named by “Orlando Magazine” as one of the 15 women defining power in Central Florida.
As a featured speaker, she has addressed national conferences, universities, student organizations and international and civic groups. Fennell has lived in the United Kingdom, Asia, and the South Pacific. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in English and Journalism from Florida A & M University and studied at Queen’s University, Belfast, Northern Ireland, and the University of the South Pacific, Suva, Fiji.