PHL Impression-Makers: Prime Flight Aviation Services Line Queue Attendant Tonia Davis

Prime Flight Aviation Services Line Queue Attendant Tonia Davis recently received the “Impression-makers” award in the inaugural round of PHL’s Airport Employee Recognition Program. This award recognizes frontline customer-facing employees, who provide direct customer service.  

As a line queue attendant at the Terminal D/E security checkpoint, Davis greets all passengers as they enter the line, checks boarding passes and I.D.s and answerers passengers’ questions or concerns to help guide them through the airport. She frequently works with the Transportation Security Officers (TSOs) and the TSA Explosive Detection canine. “We do our part on the outside, and that makes the TSA’s job easier on the inside,” said Davis. 

Charles Barkley and Tonia

Davis goes above and beyond her job duties and responsibilities to create a comfortable airport experience for everyone, especially for first-time fliers who may be nervous.  In her nomination of Davis for the Employee Recognition Program, Prime Flight Aviation Services Operations Manager Donna Firn said, “Tonia does everything from giving information, lending out her cell phone, getting passengers a small cool drink during a long wait time and holding hands with guests who have become ill while waiting in line. She has called the appropriate airport personnel to assist. She does it all because to her, it’s her responsibility to make the passengers comfortable and ready to enjoy the next part of their trip.” Davis, who is also a certified nursing assistant (CNA) and a part-time home health aide, has been with Prime Flight Aviation Services for six years and hopes to become a supervisor or manager one day. “I love working with my management team. They value and appreciate me as an employee. ”   

Davis runs the line in an efficient and effective manner. During the 2016 Democratic National Convention (DNC), she collaborated with the TSA planning committee on a better flow for the D/E security checkpoint to accommodate the influx of passengers with a shorter wait time and better overall experience.  

Davis is also known as a  social butterfly and a people person who proactively communicates with her coworkers as well as guests flying out of PHL. “I love helping people, I love interacting with people from all over the world and have met a lot of celebrities and passengers flying out of PHL. We’ve become like family,” said Davis.   

Among the celebrities Davis has met are Charles Barkley, Yolanda Adams, Keith Sweat, and Wanda Sykes.  “I love Charles Barkley. He flies out of PHL all the time, he greets me, hugs me, and has nicknamed me ’Smiley’,” said Davis. On her phone, you’ll find pictures of her with all the celebrities she adores and admires. She is even on a first-name basis with reporters from CBS 3, 6ABC, and NBC10.   

Tonia received roses from this passenger. 

Davis works the 4 am – 12:30 pm shift and relies on two cups of coffee to wake her up to be alert and ready. “You never really get used to the shift time. It’s hard standing. It might seem easy, but it’s not. You have to know what you’re doing,” said Davis.    

Her above and beyond work ethic is also recognized by guests who have written positive letters to her employer and have even given her roses as a token of their appreciation. “The airport is a very friendly environment to work in,” said Davis. “I’m always kind and compassionate to the passengers to help them enjoy their experience through the checkpoint.”   

The PHL Employee Recognition Program was established by the airport’s Guest Experience (GX) Department. Honorees are nominated by supervisors, peers or colleagues across the airport and selected by the GX Stakeholder Council Employee Conduct Working Group. For more information, click here


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Christine Ottow
Director of Strategic Communications
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Heather Redfern
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