< PrevNext > Cindy Heston, Anthem director of travel & events The Loyalty Wrangler By JoAnn DeLuna / December 20, 2016 / Contact Reporter Share Traveler experience has been the buzzword of 2016, but Heston, who also made BTN's 25 Most Influential list in 2013, has taken it to another level this year by launching a campaign to harness suppliers' loyalty programs on behalf of Anthem's travelers. The resulting loyalty to suppliers is in turn improving her travel program.Heston launched a mobile app, VIP Select, that provides Anthem's high-level executives such information as frequent-flyer status and airport lounge access, any data that helps them be productive on the road. Frequently, her travelers weren't even aware of the points and perks they'd earned. The app even notified travelers of the recent Marriott and Starwood merger and explained how the loyalty programs would work together. The program also saved the company money, as some loyalty programs waive baggage fees or provide free breakfast. In the past we didn't look at our employees as customers. We were beholden to negotiations and policy." "In the past we didn't look at our employees as customers. We were beholden to negotiations and policy. … Now there is this whole new arena, which is so fun," Heston said. "Our travelers now enjoy being in our program."The executives loved the app and the improved travel experience so much that Anthem is rolling out the app to an additional 3,000 road warriors. Heston also has rolled out a leisure version of the corporate program that makes some negotiated rates and benefits from Anthem's corporate suppliers available for Anthem travelers to use on leisure.