Denson completed a bachelor's degree in business administration at Stillman College in Tuscaloosa and later earned a master's in business administration at Samford University and a master's in public administration at Jacksonville State University.
Denson began working at the airport in 1983 as a properties and business manager. He was accredited by the American Association of Airport Executives (AAAE) in 1987 and was promoted to deputy director in 1994, and to president and CEO in 2000. As CEO he oversaw the Terminal Modernization Project that was completed in 2014. As part of that project, Denson directed that a private exercise area with shower be constructed near his office. An attorney for the Birmingham Airport Authority questioned the provision and reported it to the Alabama Ethics Commission, but the issue was dismissed.
Denson has served on the AAAE Board of Directors, as well as on its policy review and legislative committees. He was given a "Distinguished Service Award" by the association in 2016. He was inducted into the Airport Minority Advisory Council's Hall of Fame in 2001.
Denson has also chaired the annual fund raisers for the Sickle Cell Foundation Birmingham and the UNCF Birmingham, and was vice-chair of the Birmingham Education Foundation. He has served on the boards of the Kiwanis Club of Birmingham, the Birmingham Business Alliance, and Stillman College. He and his wife Carolyn have two children and three grandchildren. They live in Fairfield.
- "A Conversation: Al Denson" (October 2, 2013) B-Metro
- Archibald, John (June 29, 2016) "Airport CEO's private gym just one of the outrages." The Birmingham News
- Edgemon, Erin (June 13, 2017) "Birmingham airport CEO's private gym doesn't break the law, commission rules." The Birmingham News
- Van der Bijl, Hanno (December 15, 2017) "CEO of Birmingham Airport Authority stepping down." Birmingham Business Journal