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Message From CEO Phillip A. Washington: CEEA Renderings Revealed


Denver International Airport (DEN) takes seriously its responsibility to provide opportunities for our neighbors who surround our airport. As the region’s largest economic engine, we want proximity to our operations to be beneficial to you.

Earlier this year, we introduced a strategy to prepare the airport to serve an inevitable 100 million annual passengers within 10 years. We named that strategy Vision 100 and made sure to include the expectations of continuous stakeholder input and feedback. This message and the project it describes are in alignment with those guidelines. We also determined that a primary task would be to “power our people,” both current and future, by providing real opportunities for equity, diversity, inclusion and accessibility.

Among the major projects currently under construction at DEN, the development of the Center of Equity and Excellence in Aviation (CEEA) may have the most long-term impact on the future of the airport. CEEA will become an economic powerhouse that will help DEN build and grow its future workforce. Anyone who either works at DEN or hopes to work at DEN one day will benefit from this institution.

With the unveiling of first conceptual renderings, you can now envision the resource that will soon be available to you, your friends, family and others interested in the aviation industry.

The construction of this one-of-a-kind training center is being funded as part of the Great Hall Project. It creates a pipeline of aviation talent that will provide employees and under-represented individuals, of all ages and backgrounds, from surrounding communities opportunities to start and enhance careers in the aviation industry.

CEEA is being constructed within 66,000 square feet of space on Level 4 of the Hotel and Transit Center, below the outdoor plaza.

The focal point of the space will be the Hall of Equity, which will accommodate 300 people for training and educational purposes. Other adjacent lecture halls and training rooms will accommodate another 200 – 300 people. A pre-function lobby will feature a small café for networking and small group meetings.

Studio Completiva, a minority-owned firm, was awarded the design contract through Stantec. Sky Blue Builders is the minority-owned general contracting firm, which was awarded the construction contract through Hensel Phelps. Construction will begin in late 2023.

Until then, we’re already implementing some of the programming that will call CEEA home, including:

  • Business Development Training Academy: a program that supports small businesses by providing a systematic approach to entering DEN as a subcontractor in construction, professional services, goods and services, and concessions.
  • Career Pathways: a progressive training program that will help attract and retain the current and future workforce.
  • The Research and Innovation Lab: will allow DEN to partner with local universities to conduct aviation research, identify best practices and adapt new and existing technology systems to innovate the aviation industry.

As a true tool for equity, CEEA will serve as a way for current and future employees to develop and hone the skills that will help them progress into more responsible and lucrative positions. We hope a good number of program graduates will choose to stay at DEN but we also hope CEEA will become recognized around the world as a source of expertly trained and highly motivated professionals ready to work in the aviation industry.

Learn more about CEEA and its current opportunities by visiting the CEEA Webpage.

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Denver International Airport is one of the busiest airports in the world. DEN is the primary economic engine for the state of Colorado, generating more than $36 billion for the region annually. Follow us on socials!