speaker biographies - NYU School of Professional Studies

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speaker biographies - NYU School of Professional Studies
Photos (L-R):
Velidhu Island Resort,
Republic of Maldives;
The Taj Mahal Palace, Mumbai;
Dusit Thani Dubai;
New York City Skyline;
Grand Lisboa Hotel, Macau
34th ANNUAL new york university
International
HospitalitY
IndUstry
Investment Conference
JUNE 3–5, 2012  New York Marriott Marquis  New York City
general session
and workshop speaker biographies
Conference Chair
Jonathan M. Tisch
Co-Chairman of the Board and Office of the President,
Loews Corporation and Chairman, Loews Hotels
www.nyu.edu/hospitalityconference
CONFERENCE HOST
Bjorn Hanson, Ph.D.
Divisional Dean, Clinical Professor, HVS Chair
Preston Robert Tisch Center for Hospitality, Tourism, and Sports Management,
School of Continuing and Professional Studies, New York University
34 th ANNUAL NEW YORK UNIVERSITY
International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
conference chair
Jonathan M. Tisch
Co-Chairman of the Board and Office of the President, Loews
Corporation; Chairman, Loews Hotels
During his tenure as CEO beginning in 1989, Tisch engineered Loews Hotels’ expansion and emergence as a leading luxury hotel brand by infusing the properties
with a widely praised corporate culture that places a high value on partnerships
that empower employees, satisfy customers, contribute to communities, and improve the bottom line. Tisch initiated the Loews Hotels Good Neighbor Policy over
20 years ago, the first of its kind in the hospitality industry. Today, the Good Neighbor program underscores his enduring commitment to good corporate citizenship,
social responsibility, and the health of our environment and communities. The
Loews Good Neighbor Policy is a recipient of the U.S. President’s Service Award.
Believing you can do well and do good at the same time, Tisch is a champion of
corporate responsibility and has devoted a lifetime to active citizenship—an idea
that uses the power of partnerships and grassroots participation to solve seemingly intractable problems.
Tisch is the author of three best-selling books that explore his leadership philosophy, the role of the customer experience and civic engagement; The Power of
We: Succeeding Through Partnerships; Chocolates on the Pillow Aren’t Enough:
Reinventing the Customer Experience; and Citizen You: Doing Your Part to Change
the World, respectively.
He is also the host of the Emmy-nominated television series, Beyond the Boardroom with Jonathan Tisch, where he speaks with some of America’s preeminent
CEOs and business luminaries in one-on-one interviews. Viewers discover that
business is about more than just numbers, rather, it’s the successful combination
of people, hard work, guts, and imagination.
photo credit: Buck Ennis
Jonathan M. Tisch is Co-Chairman of the Board and a member of the Office of the
President of Loews Corporation, one of the largest diversified financial holding
companies in the U.S., and is also Chairman of its subsidiary, Loews Hotels.
Ten Most Influential Business Leaders” and was named “CEO of the Year” by the
Executive Council of New York in 2006.
Tisch served as the Vice-Chairman of The Welfare to Work Partnership, and currently serves on the Board of Trustees for Tufts University, where he is also the
naming benefactor of the Jonathan M. Tisch College of Citizenship and Public Service. He is also on the Board of the Tribeca Film Institute. Tisch is a co-owner and
a member of the Board of Directors of the New York Football Giants and the team’s
Treasurer. Tisch was instrumental in bringing Super Bowl XLVIII to the metropolitan
area and is a co-chair of the 2014 NY/NJ Super Bowl Host Committee.
Tisch is widely recognized as a passionate advocate on behalf of the multi-billion
dollar travel and tourism industry and works tirelessly to educate elected officials
and the public at large about the industry’s significant economic, social, and diplomatic contributions. Tisch founded and served as Chairman of the Travel Business
Roundtable until 2008, and now serves as Chairman Emeritus of its successor
organization, the United States Travel Association, the national non-profit association representing all segments of the travel industry.
He is also committed to a vibrant tourism industry in New York City, where for
nearly six years he served as Chairman of NYC & Company, the city’s official
tourism marketing agency and convention and visitors bureau. Concurrent with his
national efforts to help stimulate travel and tourism in the aftermath of September
11th, Tisch served as Chairman of New York Rising, a task force committed to
reviving tourism and the economy in New York City. In recognition for his leadership and civic involvement, Crain’s New York Business named Tisch one of the “Top
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34 th ANNUAL NEW YORK UNIVERSITY
International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
conference host
& coordinator
conference host
conference coordinator
Bjorn Hanson, Ph.D.
Dorothy A. Jennings
Divisional Dean, Clinical Professor, HVS Chair
Preston Robert Tisch Center for Hospitality, Tourism, and
Sports Management, School of Continuing and Professional Studies,
New York University
Executive Vice President
HVS
Bjorn Hanson is Divisional Dean and Clinical
Professor for the Preston Robert Tisch Center
for Hospitality, Tourism, and Sports
Management, teaching undergraduate and
graduate finance, research, statistics and
general business courses. He is also serving
as Co-Interim Dean of one of New York
University’s 14 schools, The School of
Continuing and Professional Studies.
Hanson retired from PricewaterhouseCoopers
LLP in June 2008 as the founder of PwC’s Global Hospitality and Leisure practice.
During his tenure at PricewaterhouseCoopers/Coopers & Lybrand, he held positions including: Global Industry Chairman – Hospitality & Leisure, Global Industry
Chairman – Real Estate and Director of Appraisal Services; he also served on the
company’s U.S. Leadership Committee as well as its Global Financial Advisory
Services Management Committee.
Hanson is a Certified Fraud Examiner and Certified Real Estate Counselor, and
has received numerous honors including: One of the 33 Most Influential People
in the Travel Industry, Travel Weekly; One of the 25 Most Influential People in the
Meetings Industry, Meeting News; One of the Lodging Industry’s 75 Leaders,
AH&LA Profiles in Leadership; Cornell’s Hotelie of the Year; and One of the Lodging
Industry’s Innovators, Lodging/AH&LA.
Hanson continues to be one of the most cited hospitality industry executives
with multiple citations in each of the following: Forbes, Fortune, Business Week,
Time, Newsweek, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, Financial Times,
US News & World Report, Barron’s, Cornell Hotel and Restaurant Administration
Quarterly/Cornell Hospitality Quarterly – in 2008 he and his co-authors received
the Best Paper Award, and many others. He has authored chapters in multiple
textbooks, appeared on the Today Show, Wall Street Journal Business Report,
WCBS, CNBC, Fox Business, CNN, Bloomberg, Nightly Business Report, National
Public Radio’s Marketplace and other television and radio broadcasts. Hanson received his B.S. from Cornell University’s School of Hotel Administration, his M.B.A.
from Fordham University and his Ph.D. from New York University.
Dorothy A. Jennings is Executive Vice
President of HVS, where she is involved in the
administration of the New York office of the
renowned hotel consulting organization. HVS
operates globally from offices throughout the
world, and provides a wide variety of hotel
feasibility, appraisal and financial services
specializing exclusively in the lodging
industry. HVS provides assistance in litigation
support, management company selection,
contract negotiation, and asset management.
Prior to joining HVS, Jennings was Vice President of InterBank/Brener Brokerage
Services Inc., as well as Stephen W. Brener Associates, Inc., where she served
as Vice President, Brokerage Department. Jennings is a member of the Board of
Directors of the Belleayre Conservatory, which promotes cultural activities at Belleayre Mountain and is a vital resource of the Catskill Mountain region. She is also
a member of the Women’s Hospitality Investment Network (WHIN).
Jennings began her real estate career as Manager of the Hospitality Division of
Helmsley-Spear, Inc., and served as Executive Assistant to Stephen W. Brener,
founder of the New York University International Hospitality Industry Investment
Conference. She has been involved as Conference Coordinator of this premier
event since its inception 34 years ago. In this role, she is responsible for the
coordination of Patron and Sponsor support that provides student scholarships. Jennings is a member of the Executive Planning Committee for the New
York University Preston Robert Tisch Center for Hospitality, Tourism, and Sports
Management. In conjunction with the committee, Jennings plays a vital part in the
development of the conference program.
In 2012, Jennings was recognized by New York University when a room was
named in her honor in the new NYU School of Continuing and Professional Studies
building acknowledging her tireless efforts to further the mission of the Preston
Robert Tisch Center.
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34 th ANNUAL NEW YORK UNIVERSITY
International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
Guest Speaker and
Interview Guest
luncheon address
Beyond the Boardroom Interview
Chris Christie
Chuck Todd
Governor
State of New Jersey
Chief White House Correspondent
NBC News
Governor Chris Christie has a deep affection
and strong commitment to New Jersey.
Born in Newark and raised in Livingston,
Christie has lived in New Jersey his entire life,
except to attend college.
After graduating from the University of Delaware in 1984, Christie attended Seton Hall
University School of Law graduating in 1987.
Christie joined a Cranford law firm and soon
was named a partner. He was elected a Freeholder in Morris County, and served as
Director of the Board in 1997.
Christie was named U.S. Attorney for the District of New Jersey in 2002. As the chief
federal law enforcement officer in New Jersey, Christie earned praise from leaders
in both parties and drew national attention for his efforts in battling political corruption, corporate crime, human trafficking, gangs, terrorism and polluters. Christie led
a widely acclaimed charge against public corruption. Regardless of party affiliation
or political influence, when laws were broken, Christie took action. His office racked
up an astonishing record - winning convictions or guilty pleas from over 130 public
officials - both Republican and Democrat - without losing a single case.
Some of Christie’s most notable cases involved some of the worst in New Jersey.
He fought against gang violence when he prosecuted 45 members of the Double II
Bloods; he fought against child pornography when he helped bring down 1500 child
pornographers worldwide; and he stood up to polluters who neglected their obligation to our environment. One of Christie’s finest moments was when he led the team
that thwarted terrorists’ plans to attack our military men and women at Fort Dix.
While each of Christie’s cases made a difference for New Jersey, he earned
widespread praise for standing up to the dirty practices of the political elite and
made clear that stealing from New Jersey taxpayers or abusing power would not
be tolerated.
Chuck Todd is the Chief White House
Correspondent for NBC News, as well as the
host of “The Daily Rundown” on msnbc. He
became NBC News’ Political Director in
March 2007. He also serves as NBC News’
on-air political analyst for “NBC Nightly
News with Brian Williams,” “Today,” “Meet
the Press” and msnbc. In addition to his
on-air analysis, Todd has been responsible
for all aspects of the network’s political
coverage, serving as the point person for
political news and information. He is also the editor of First Read, NBC’s
must-read guide to political news and trends in and around Washington, DC.
In 2009, Todd co-authored with Sheldon Gawiser the definitive election result
analysis book for the 2008 presidential campaign, titled, “How Barack Obama
Won,” published by Vintage.
Before joining NBC News, Todd was the Editor-in-Chief of National Journal’s The
Hotline, Washington’s premier daily briefing on American Politics. In his 15 years
working at The Hotline or one of its affiliates, Todd became one of Washington’s
foremost experts on political campaigns of all levels. He served as Editor-in-Chief
for six years. He also serves as a contributing editor to The Atlantic Monthly where
he pens political essays.
Todd frequently contributes op-ed essays for various publications, including
The New York Times and the Washington Post. During the 2004 elections, he
moderated one of the few presidential candidate forums in Iowa. In addition to
Todd’s extensive media presence, he’s served as an adjunct professor, teaching a
graduate-level political communications course at the Johns Hopkins University. In
December 2005, Todd was featured as one of “Washingtonian’s ‘Best Of’” journalists. In March 2001, George magazine named him one of the 50 most influential
people in politics.
When Christie left the U.S. Attorney’s office on December 1, 2008, every major
newspaper in the state applauded his term as New Jersey’s US Attorney. Christie
was sworn in as New Jersey’s 55th Governor on January 19, 2010.
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34 th ANNUAL NEW YORK UNIVERSITY
International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
The Giants of Real Estate
Panelists
Stephen M. Ross
Chairman, Chief Executive Officer and Founder
Related Companies
Stephen M. Ross is the Chairman, Chief Executive Officer
and Founder of Related Companies. Ross formed the
company in 1972 and today the company includes over
2,000 professionals. Related has developed over $20
billion in real estate and owns real estate assets valued
at over $15 billion made up of best-in-class mixed-use,
residential, retail, office, trade show and affordable
properties in premier high-barrier-to-entry markets. Ross is also the owner of the
Miami Dolphins and Sun Life Stadium.
Ross is Chairman of the Board of Directors of Equinox Holdings, Inc., serves
on the Executive Committee and is a trustee of Lincoln Center and is a trustee
of New York Presbyterian Hospital, the Guggenheim Foundation, the Urban Land
Institute and the NY Chapter of Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation International. He is also a director of the World Resources Institute and the Jackie
Robinson Foundation and chairperson emeritus of the Real Estate Board of New
York (REBNY), the city’s leading real estate trade association.
Over the years, Ross has received numerous honors for his business, civic,
and philanthropic activities. Most recently, he was named the Most Powerful
Person in New York Real Estate by the New York Observer, Multi-Family Property
Executive of the Year by Commercial Property News, and Housing Person of the
Year by the National Housing Conference. Ross also received The National Building Museum Honor Award, REBNY’s Harry B. Helmsley Distinguished New Yorker
Award and the Jack D. Weiler Award from UJA. Crain’s New York named Ross one
of the 100 Most Influential Leaders in Business and he was recognized by NYC &
Company with their Leadership in Tourism Award.
Ross graduated from the University of Michigan with a Bachelor’s degree
in Business Administration, from Wayne State University Law School with a Juris
Doctor and from New York University School of Law with a Master of Laws in
Taxation. In 2004, the University of Michigan renamed its business school the
Stephen M. Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan and in 2011 the
University of Michigan awarded Ross an honorary degree, Doctor of Laws.
Steven Roth
Chairman
Vornado Realty Trust
Steven Roth, is Chairman of the Board of Vornado Realty
Trust. Roth was the Chief Executive Officer of Vornado for
28 years, from 1981 through May 2009. Roth is
Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Alexander’s, Inc
and the co-Founder and Managing General Partner of
Interstate Properties. Barron’s Magazine in 2005, 2006
and 2007 named Roth one of the World’s Thirty Most Respected CEOs. In its
January 2006 issue on the “Best CEOs in America”, Institutional Investor magazine
identified Roth as the top CEO in the REIT industry. Roth was the 2002 – 2003
Chair of the National Association of Real Estate Investment Trusts (NAREIT). Roth is
a trustee of Dartmouth College where he chairs their Finance Committee. He is a
trustee of the Intrepid Museum Foundation, a former member of the Board of
Directors of the Jewish Theological Seminary of America and a former board
member of New York University School of Medicine Foundation. He has served as
member of the Board of the Amos Tuck School, and has endowed two professorships there. He also is the principal donor to the Roth Center for Jewish Life at
Dartmouth. Roth is a former Trustee of the Horace Mann School and a former
trustee of the Whitney Museum of American Art. Roth is a graduate of DeWitt
Clinton High School in the Bronx. He received his AB degree from Dartmouth
College and an M.B.A. with High Distinction from Dartmouth’s Amos Tuck School of
Business Administration.
Moderator
Rebecca Jarvis
Anchor, Business and Economics Correspondent
CBS News
Rebecca Jarvis was named co-host of “CBS This Morning:
Saturday” in January 2012. She will continue as Business
and Economics Correspondent for CBS News.
Jarvis has been news anchor for the “The Early
Show on Saturday” and business and economics correspondent for CBS News since April, 2010.
Before joining CBS News, Jarvis reported breaking stock, currency, and commodities market news from the New York Stock
Exchange, the NASDAQ, and the New York Mercantile Exchange for CNBC. She also
contributed to MSNBC and NBC News programs, and regularly guest anchored the
“Closing Bell,” “Squawk on the Street,” and “Power Lunch.” Additionally, Jarvis
covered prominent national events such as the Chrysler and General Motors
bankruptcy, the Bernard Madoff scandal, the collapse of Bear Stearns and Lehman
Brothers and the sale of Merrill Lynch as well as the 2008 Presidential elections.
Prior to entering the field of television journalism, Jarvis wrote for numerous
publications, including Crain’s Chicago Business and Business 2.0. She also has
worked in investment banking and foreign currency trading. Jarvis graduated from
the University of Chicago in 2003 with a degree in Economics and Constitutional
Law. A recipient of the University of Chicago Dean’s Grant, she studied European
banking and financial markets and the formation of the European Union at the
Université Sciences Po in Paris, France.
She has received national recognition for her work with Colin Powell to
empower children and improve communities. In 2000, she was named “One of
Twenty Teens Who Will Change the World” by Teen People magazine and also
named a “National Point of Light,” receiving accolades from Presidents Bill Clinton
and George Bush, Sr.
5
34 th ANNUAL NEW YORK UNIVERSITY
International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
The Economists’ Update
Panelists
Moderator
Steve Blitz
Ron Insana
Director, Chief Economist, Homebuilders and Real Estate Analyst
ITG Investment Research
CNBC Contributor
Insana Information Partners
Steve Blitz has been analyzing economies and capital
markets for over 30 years, including nearly 20 years of
using that analysis to successfully manage global
fixed-income portfolios. His career includes econometric
modeling at Data Resources Inc., creating derivatives
market strategies at Salomon Brothers, managing
fixed-income portfolios at OFFITBANK, and running the
global fixed-income group at Lazard Asset Management. His views and outlook
have often been reported by the financial media. Blitz has a B.A. in Economics
from New York University and an M.A. in Economics from Columbia University.
Ron Insana is a contributor to CNBC and MSNBC, where
he discusses the most pressing economic and market
issues of the day. He also delivers The Market Scoreboard Report to radio stations around the country. He has
also written for Money Magazine and USA Today.
In addition to his work as a business journalist,
Insana served as a Managing Director at SAC Capital, a
$14 billion hedge fund, run by the legendary Steve Cohen. Insana was also Chief
Executive Officer of Insana Capital Partners which, at its peak, managed the $125
million Insana Capital Partners “Legends Fund.” For nearly three decades, Insana
has been a highly respected business journalist and money manager, who began
his career at the Financial News Network in 1984 and joined CNBC when FNN and
CNBC merged in 1991.
Insana is well-known for his high-profile interviews, which included Presidents Clinton and Bush; billionaire investors Warren Buffett and George Soros,
among others: captains of industry from Bill Gates to Jack Welch and to the late
Steve Jobs, top economists, analysts and global heads of state. Insana was named
one of the “Top 100 Business News Journalists of the 20th Century” and was
nominated for a news and documentary Emmy for his role in NBC’s coverage of
9/11. He has authored four books on Wall Street and is a highly regarded lecturer
on domestic and global economics, financial markets and economic policy issues.
Jason DeSena Trennert
Managing Partner and Chief Investment Strategist
Strategas Research Partners
Jason DeSena Trennert is the Managing Partner and
Chief Investment Strategist of Strategas Research
Partners. Trennert has been ranked consistently as one of
the nation’s top investment strategists. In 2006, he was
named to SmartMoney’s Power 30 list of the most
influential people in the world of investing. Widely quoted
in the domestic and foreign press, Trennert is a regular
guest host on CNBC’s Squawk Box.
Trennert is the author of the popular investment book, “New Markets,
New Strategies”, published in 2005 by McGraw Hill. Prior to founding Strategas,
Trennert was the Chief Investment Strategist and a Senior Managing Director at
International Strategy & Investment (ISI) Group where he built and oversaw two of
that Firm’s most popular research efforts, the Company Surveys and its Investment
Strategy Group. Trennert has an M.B.A. from The Wharton School at the University
of Pennsylvania and B.S. in International Economics from Georgetown University.
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34 th ANNUAL NEW YORK UNIVERSITY
International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
THE CEOs CHECK IN
Panelists
Eric A. Danziger
President and Chief Executive Officer
Wyndham Hotel Group
Eric A. Danziger is responsible for the operation, growth,
performance and strategic direction of Wyndham Hotel
Group, the world’s largest hotel company, with 7,205
hotels and approximately 613,100 rooms in 66 countries
around the globe.
A lodging industry veteran, he joined the company
in late 2008 after serving in executive leadership roles
for some of the world’s most well-known hospitality companies including Carlson
Hotels Worldwide, Starwood Hotels and Resorts Worldwide, Double Tree Hotels and
the former Wyndham International.
In 2012, Danziger was recognized by the Hospitality Sales and Marketing Association International (HSMAI) with the Albert E. Koehl Award, which was
established to honor individuals who have made significant contributions to the
hospitality advertising and marketing industry. In addition, Danziger is a 2011
UJA-Federation of New York Honoree and was the 2005 recipient of the Northern
California Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year award in the category of real
estate, hospitality and construction.
He is a member of the prestigious Industry Real Estate Financing Council and
the Urban Land Institute, and he sits on the American Hotel & Lodging Educational
Foundation Board of Trustees. Danziger also serves on the advisory board for
the Center for Hospitality Research at the Cornell School of Hotel Administration.
Previously, he served as the chairman of the American Hotel & Motel Association’s
Strategic Planning Group and as a trustee of the American Hotel & Motel Federation. Danziger holds an honorary doctorate from Johnson & Wales University in
Providence, R.I., where he is a distinguished visiting professor.
Mark S. Hoplamazian
President and Chief Executive Officer
Hyatt Hotels Corporation
Mark Hoplamazian was appointed to the Board of
Directors in November 2006 and named President and
Chief Executive Officer of Hyatt Hotels Corporation in
December 2006. Prior to being appointed to his present
position, Hoplamazian served as President of The Pritzker
Organization, LLC. The Pritzker Organization is the
principal financial and investment advisor for Pritzker
family business interests. During his 17 year tenure with The Pritzker Organization,
he served as advisor to various Pritzker family-owned companies, including Hyatt
Hotels Corporation and its predecessors.
Hoplamazian has served on the boards of directors of a number of privately
held companies and participated on behalf of the Pritzker family business interests
in the formation of a number of companies. He previously worked in international
mergers and acquisitions at The First Boston Corporation in New York.
Hoplamazian is the current Chairman of the National Advisory Council on
Minority Business Enterprise. He currently serves on the Advisory Board of Facing
History and Ourselves, the Council on the University of Chicago Booth School of
Business, the Board of Directors of New Schools for Chicago, and the Executive
Committee of the Board of Directors of World Business Chicago. He graduated from
Harvard College and earned an M.B.A. from the University of Chicago Booth School
of Business. Hoplamazian is a member of the Discovery Class of the Henry Crown
Fellowship at the Aspen Institute.
Gerald Lawless
Executive Chairman
Jumeirah Group
As Executive Chairman of Jumeirah Group, Gerald
Lawless has helped establish Jumeirah as one of the
premier luxury hotel brands in the world. He joined the
company in 1997 after a 23-year career with Forte Hotels,
which culminated in him setting up and growing Forte’s
operations in the Middle East.
Taking on the challenge of launching Burj Al Arab,
the world’s most luxurious hotel, after the successful introduction of the Jumeirah
Beach Hotel to an eager travelling public, Lawless went on to become Chief Executive Officer, then Executive Chairman of Jumeirah Group. Jumeirah currently has
17 properties under management in Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Maldives, Shanghai, Frankfurt, London, Rome and New York with a robust pipeline of new openings planned,
especially in the Middle East and Asia, each offering the promise of ‘Stay Different’.
Lawless is a member of the Executive Committee of the World Travel and
Tourism Council (WTTC) and a fellow member of the Institute of Hospitality
(formerly HCIMA). In addition, Lawless is a Vice Chairman of the Aviation, Travel
and Tourism Council of the World Economic Forum (WEF), member of the Dubai
Holding Executive Committee and Member of the Board of Trustees of the Emirates National Development Programme (ENDP). Lawless is also a Non-Executive
Director at the Travelodge Board where he represents Dubai Holding, and serves
as the Chairman of the Board of Governors of the Emirates Academy of Hospitality
Management. Lawless is a Graduate of Shannon College of Hotel Management
in Ireland and holds an Honorary Degree of Doctor of Business Administration in
Hospitality Management by the Johnson & Wales University, State of Rhode Island
in the U.S.A., and an Honorary Degree of Laws by the NUI Galway, Ireland.
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34 th ANNUAL NEW YORK UNIVERSITY
International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
Arne M. Sorenson
President and Chief Executive Officer
Marriott International, Inc.
Arne M. Sorenson is President and Chief Executive
Officer of Marriott International, Inc., a leading global
lodging company with nearly 3,700 lodging properties in
72 countries and territories. In his previous role as
Marriott’s President and Chief Operating Officer,
Sorenson was responsible for the performance and
growth of all of Marriott’s worldwide brands and
businesses. Prior to this, Sorenson served as Executive Vice President, Chief
Financial Officer, and President of Continental European Lodging, with responsibility for lodging operations and development in the continental European region, as
well as the company’s finance, treasury and financial planning and analysis
functions. Prior to joining Marriott in 1996, Sorenson was a partner with the law
firm Latham & Watkins in Washington, DC, where he specialized in mergers and
acquisitions litigation.
Sorenson is Chairman of Marriott’s Global Diversity and Inclusion Council.
Sorenson also serves on the Committee for Excellence. He co-founded Marriott’s Global Sustainability Council in 2007, and in 2008, he launched Marriott’s
rainforest preservation partnership with the Amazonas Sustainable Foundation
in Brazil. Sorenson was elected to Marriott International’s board of directors in
2011. He also serves on the board of directors of Wal Mart Stores, Inc. Sorenson
is a graduate of the University of Minnesota Law School and of Luther College in
Decorah, Iowa.
Rach serves as a board member for NYC & Company (Convention & Visitors
Bureau); Hospitality Sales and Marketing Association International (HSMAI); and
Greater Madison Convention and Visitors Bureau. She is a past board member
of the Hospitality Sales and Marketing Association International Foundation; and
the Travel Business Roundtable; Executive Advisor for Hotel Electronic Distribution Network Association (HEDNA); Industry Real Estate Finance Advisory Council
(IREFAC); New York City Academy of Travel and Tourism; the New York Hospitality Council; New York Society of Association Executives (NYSAE); the Women in
Lodging Council; World Association for Hospitality and Tourism Training; a founding
fellow of the Educational Foundation (EF) of the American Hotel & Lodging Association (AH&LA); an elected delegate to the 1995 White House Conference on Tourism;
served as housing commissioner for the 1995 Special Olympic World Games; and
was a member of the 1995 Tourism Policy Forum.
In June 2008 ForbesLife Executive Woman named Rach as one of the
twenty-five most influential women in travel; in January 2008 Hospitality Sales
and Marketing Association International (HSMAI) selected her as one of the
“Top 25 Extraordinary Minds in Sales and Marketing” and in November 2007
Travel Weekly identified her as one of the 33 most influential people in the travel
industry. Her latest recognition came from the NYU Tisch Center Alumni Society
in October 2009 with their selection of Rach as the 2009 Legend of the Industry.
Rach delivers keynote speeches and seminars on a variety of consumer issues
and perspectives and has authored numerous articles and chapters on customer
service, hotel sales and marketing and consumer demographics. Rach holds a
B.S. and M.B.A. from the University of Wisconsin System, and a doctorate from
the George Washington University.
moderator
Dr. Lalia Rach
Clinical Professor
Preston Robert Tisch Center for Hospitality, Tourism, and
Sports Management, School of Continuing and Professional Studies
New York University
Dr. Lalia Rach, Clinical Professor and Divisional Dean
Emeritus of the Preston Robert Tisch Center for
Hospitality, Tourism, and Sports Management at the
School of Continuing and Professional Studies at New
York University in New York City. Rach is an internationally recognized hospitality and tourism educator and
industry leader. As a Clinical Professor, she teaches
graduate and undergraduate courses in Hospitality, Tourism and Sports Management. As Divisional Dean, she was responsible for the academic and administrative
operations of a global educational division including programs, conferences,
personnel, budget, development and physical facilities. Rach serves as an advisor
to senior level executives at many of America’s leading companies, with a focus on
trends, branding and marketing strategies. Her clients include corporate,
association and government leaders in the hospitality, tourism, sales and
marketing, entertainment and sports industries.
8
34 th ANNUAL NEW YORK UNIVERSITY
International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
AWARDEEs
THE IREFAC C. EVERETT JOHNSON
AWARD recipient
Lonny Henry
Vice Chairman, Investment Banking
J.P. Morgan Securities
LODGING HOSPITALITY MAGAZINE’S
STEPHEN W. BRENER SILVER PLATE
AWARD recipient
Christopher J. Nassetta
President and Chief Executive Officer
Hilton Worldwide
9
34 th ANNUAL NEW YORK UNIVERSITY
International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
SPEAKER BIOGRAPHIES
Minaz Abji
Michael Achenbaum
Executive Vice President, Asset Management
Host Hotels & Resorts
President
Gansevoort Hotel Group
As Executive Vice President of Host Hotels & Resorts,
Minaz Abji is responsible for the leadership of the Global
Asset Management, Feasibility & Portfolio Analysis,
Business Intelligence, Design & Construction and
Revenue Management Departments. Abji has over 30
years of hotel operations experience including 23 years
with Westin hotels. Abji joined Host Hotels & Resorts as
Executive Vice President in August of 2003. Before coming to Host Hotels &
Resorts, Abji was President of Canadian Hotel Income Properties REIT, a Canadian
REIT located in Vancouver, British Columbia. Prior to his tenure with CHIP, Abji
worked for Starwood Hotels and Resorts in Canada as Area Managing Director.
Michael Achenbaum is the President of Gansevoort Hotel
Group (GHG) and is responsible for all aspects of brand
management, new hotel development opportunities,
lender relationships, financial and feasibility analysis,
and partnership development. Achenbaum is actively
involved in the design, marketing, brand partnerships,
and tenant selection for each property and is a principal
in the management and development firm. Since joining the firm in 1999,
Achenbaum has managed three major development projects in excess of $1 billion
for the firm, including Gansevoort Meatpacking NYC in the Meatpacking District of
Manhattan, Gansevoort South Beach in Miami Beach and the recently opened
Gansevoort Park Avenue NYC. Prior to joining the company, Achenbaum was with
Bear Stearns and Nomura Securities responsible for originating commercial
mortgage loans for securitization. Achenbaum received a B.A. in History from the University of Michigan and
holds a J.D. and M.B.A. from New York University.
James Abrahamson
Chief Executive Officer
Interstate Hotels & Resorts
James Abrahamson is Interstate Hotels & Resorts’ Chief
Executive Officer responsible for the Company’s overall
performance and global growth of its management
portfolio and he serves as an executive director on the
Company’s Board of Directors. Interstate Hotels &
Resorts is the largest U.S.-based global hotel management company managing nearly 400 hotels with more
than 70,000 rooms spanning the U.S. and ten additional countries.
Abrahamson joined Interstate Hotels & Resorts from InterContinental Hotels
Group (IHG), where he was President of the Americas region, the company’s largest
operating unit, and was also an executive director of IHG’s Board of Directors.
Previously, Abrahamson held key leadership positions in senior management in
the areas of operations, development and franchising with Hyatt Corporation, the
Marcus Corporation and Hilton Worldwide.
Abrahamson is active in the hospitality industry and community affairs
including serving as Chair of the CEO Council of AH&LA and as first Vice Chair of
the U.S. Travel Association. He is also a member of the Atlanta Chamber of Commerce’s Board of Directors and the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, where he serves
as Chairman of the Board of Directors. He also serves on the Advisory Board at the
Emory University Eye Center. Abrahamson holds a degree in Business Administration from the University of Minnesota.
Arthur Adler
Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, Americas
Jones Lang LaSalle Hotels
Arthur Adler, Managing Director and Chief Executive
Officer-Americas, heads the Americas division of
Jones Lang LaSalle Hotels, which is part of the Jones
Lang LaSalle Hotels’ international group. Adler
specializes in arranging hotel market transactions,
financings, investment advisory services, asset
management and consulting for domestic and
offshore owners and investors.
Adler’s diverse industry background includes arranging debt and equity
transactions, consulting and asset management, litigation support and strategic
planning for owners, investors and lenders. Adler oversees a business that includes
over 80 people which has as its clients the most prolific hotel owners and operators in the industry, including InterContinental Hotels and Resorts, The Blackstone
Group, Morgan Stanley Real Estate, Colony Capital, Starwood Hotels and Resorts,
Global Hyatt Corporation, among others.
Previously, Adler was Managing Director of the Lodging & Leisure Group at
Sonnenblick-Goldman Company. During his diverse career, he has been a Partner
at Coopers & Lybrand in the Hospitality Consulting Group, a Senior Principal at
Laventhol & Horwath and an Operations Analyst for Hilton Hotels.
Adler holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Cornell University, is a
member of the Cornell Society of Hotelmen and has received their “Distinguished Alumni Award.” Previously, Crain’s New York Business Journal named
him one of the top “40 under 40” business executives in New York City. Adler
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is a member of the Urban Land Institute, is a founding member of The Cornell
University Real Estate Counsel, is a member of ULI’s Hotel Development Counsel
and is a frequent presenter at global and domestic hotel industry conferences.
He is regularly quoted in leading trade journals and has been featured as a hotel
industry expert on CNBC and CNNFN and in the Financial Times, The New York
Times and the Wall Street Journal.
Jim Amorosia
Chief Executive Officer, Motel 6 / Studio 6 North America
ACCOR North America
Jim Amorosia is President and Chief Executive Officer of
Motel 6 and Studio 6. Amorosia is responsible for the
strategic leadership and day-to-day operations of the
brands’ 1,100 locations in the U.S. and Canada.
Amorosia brings more than 25 years of hotel
operations experience to Accor. Amorosia joined Motel 6
in 1985 as a Regional Marketing Manager and advanced
through the company serving in numerous positions in Operations, Marketing and
Human Resources. He was promoted to President and Chief Operating Officer for
Motel 6 and Studio 6 starting in 2007 and then to President and Chief Executive
Officer in 2011.
Amorosia is a current member of the Board of Directors – French American
Chamber of Commerce (Dallas / Fort Worth), a past two-term commissioner with
the California Board of Travel and Tourism, and a past Director of the Bay Area
Urban League. Amorosia holds a Bachelor’s degree from the Crane School of Music
and a Master of Business Administration from Arizona State University.
Kapila K. Anand
Hospitality Sector Leader
KPMG LLP
Kapila K. Anand is KPMG’s Hospitality Sector Leader and
has more than 30 years of experience with KPMG
serving a diverse group of real estate, gaming and
hospitality clients. She is also the Partner-in-Charge,
Public Policy Business Initiatives. Anand has been
involved in numerous advisory projects spanning the
entire hospitality life cycle including strategic planning,
due diligence, risk assessments, enterprise risk management, finance transformation, budgeting and forecasting, internal controls and cost management or
operational reviews.
Anand served on KPMG’s board of directors, is on the Financial Management
Committee of the American Hotel and Lodging Association and on its subcommittee responsible for updates to the Uniform System of Accounts for the Lodging
Industry. She is a member of the Executives Club of Chicago, Chicago Finance
Exchange, Women Corporate Directors, National Association of Corporate Directors,
the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and the Illinois Society of
Certified Public Accountants.
James F. Anhut
Senior Vice President, Americas Brand Management
IHG (InterContinental Hotels Group)
James F. Anhut is Senior Vice President, Americas Brand
Management for IHG (InterContinental Hotels Group) PLC.
In his position, Anhut leads the Americas Brand
Management team responsible for brand delivery,
property improvement, new business delivery, food and
beverage, and quality. Anhut most recently served as
Chief Development Officer for the Americas region where
he led development for all of IHG’s brands, whether franchised or managed, and
the initiative for enhanced strategic market planning.
Previous to this role, Anhut served as Senior Vice President, franchise
development, where he was responsible for maximizing the distribution of IHG’s
franchised hotels in North America and driving enhanced strategic market planning
for franchised development. Prior to that, Anhut led the launch and brand management for Hotel Indigo, where he was responsible for overall strategic direction of
IHG’s branded boutique hotel concept. Before the Hotel Indigo brand launch, Anhut
held the position of Senior Vice President, Brand Management, Staybridge Suites.
He designed and launched this extended-stay hotel brand, directed the growth of
the brand, as well as implemented the strategies to ensure its success.
Anhut is a third-generation hotelier with more than 25 years of industry
experience, including more than 20 years in senior management positions with
several national lodging franchisers and extended-stay hotel brands. In addition
to his operations experience, he has launched three lodging brands, influenced
the introduction and growth of two additional brands, and acquired, developed or
financed lodging real estate with an aggregate value exceeding $1 billion. Anhut
began his career in the hospitality industry in 1980 as a General Manager for his
family’s hotel and restaurant business in Farmington Hills, Michigan.
Anhut received a Bachelor’s degree in Marketing from Emory University and
a Master’s degree in Finance and Hospitality Management from Michigan State
University. He is a certified hotel administrator and is a founding member of the
Extended Stay Lodging Council of the American Hotel and Lodging Association. He
serves on the boards of directors of the School of Hospitality Management at
Michigan State University and the International Franchise Association and recently
served on the board of directors of the Sandy Springs Youth Sports Association.
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International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
John V. Arabia
Richard Baker
Chief Financial Officer and Executive Vice President of
Corporate Strategy
Sunstone Hotel Investors, Inc.
Executive Vice President, Operations Director – The Americas
Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group
John Arabia is Chief Financial Officer and Executive Vice
President of Corporate Strategy. Prior to joining Sunstone
in April 2011, Arabia was a Managing Director of Green
Street Advisor, a preeminent real estate and REIT
research firm. At Green Street, Arabia managed the firm’s
analytical research team covering the lodging and health
care sectors. Arabia is a member of the Hotel Development Council of the Urban Land Institute and co-authored Hotel Investments:
Issues & Perspectives (editions 2-4). In 2005, 2006, and 2007, Green Street was
awarded the title of Best Independent Research Firm by Institutional Investor for
the lodging and gaming sector as a result of Arabia’s efforts. In 2007, he was
named one of Institutional Investor’s “20 Rising Stars.” In 2008, Arabia won the
Wall Street Journal’s “Best on the Street” award in the hotel and gaming category.
His 24 years of industry experience also includes hospitality consulting and
auditing at EY Kenneth Leventhal. Arabia earned his M.B.A. in Real Estate/
Accounting from the University of Southern California and his B.S. in Hotel
Administration from Cornell University.
Gary E. Axelrod
Partner
Latham & Watkins LLP
Gary E. Axelrod is a Partner in the Chicago office of
Latham & Watkins where his practice focuses on
complex business transactions in the real estate,
hospitality, gaming and leisure industries for real estate
private equity sponsors and funds, REITs, institutional
investors, real estate and hotel operating companies,
and entrepreneurial developers engaged in all aspects
of real estate investment and development. He also has a substantial crossborder element in his practice, including projects in Baghdad, Dubai, Abu Dhabi
and Mexico.
Axelrod has significant experience in the hospitality industry representing owners and operators in connection with the sale, acquisition, development,
financing, ownership and management of hotel and resort and gaming properties.
He also represents corporate, venture capital and other private equity clients in
bankruptcies, restructurings, mergers, acquisitions and dispositions involving
portfolio companies and their real estate assets.
Axelrod is regularly recognized in Chambers USA, America’s Leading Lawyers
for Business, ranked as a leading expert in The Legal 500 US: Volume IV: Real Estate, Employment & Labor, and Tax, selected as Leading Lawyer in Illinois for Real
Estate by Leading Lawyers Network and selected as Illinois Rising Star by Super
Lawyer Magazine. He was licensed as a Certified Public Accountant in 1994.
As Executive Vice President, Richard Baker oversees all
aspects of the Group’s managed, owned, and developing
hotel assets in the America’s. He also sits on the board of
directors for the management group. A 28-year veteran
of the luxury hospitality industry, prior to joining
Mandarin Oriental, Baker worked with Rosewood Hotels
and Resorts and began his career with Four Seasons
Hotels & Resorts, where he spent 15 years in various senior operations and
management roles. Baker has focused much of his career within development,
asset management, operations and luxury living/lifestyle environments.
Baker also has global responsibility for Mandarin Oriental’s expanding Residences program. The company currently operates, or has under development, 13
Residences at Mandarin Oriental, connected to the Group’s properties.
Thomas J. Bardenett
President, Crossroads Hospitality Interstate Hotels & Resorts
Thomas J. Bardenett is Executive Vice President of
Operations and President, Crossroads Hospitality, the
operating division of Interstate Hotels & Resorts selectservice portfolio of over 250 hotels representing nearly
$1 billion in revenue and brands such as Residence Inn
by Marriott, Courtyard by Marriott, Homewood Suites by
Hilton, Hilton Garden Inn, Hampton Inn, Aloft, and Hyatt
Place. Most recently, Bardenett was Executive Vice President of Crossroads since
2005, and prior to that, its Senior Vice President of Sales & Marketing since 2002.
Bardenett joined Interstate in 1988 as a Director of Sales at the Marriott
North in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida and served in sales management positions at
several properties including the Orlando Marriott International Drive, the Embassy
Suites Chicago O’Hare and the Radisson Lisle/ Naperville. He joined the Crossroads division in 1994 as a Regional Director of Sales and also held the position
of Regional Director of Operations before his promotion to Crossroads’ Senior Vice
President of Sales & Marketing.
Bardenett is currently a member of The Residence Inn Association (TRIA), the
Aloft/Element Owners Advisory Council and the Hyatt Place Owners Advisory Council. Prior to joining Interstate, Bardenett worked at the Hotels at Syracuse Square.
He earned a degree in Communications with a Broadcasting minor at Oswego
State University of New York.
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International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
Keith Barr
Chief Executive Officer, Greater China
IHG (InterContinental Hotels Group)
A member of IHG’s Executive Committee, Barr is Chief
Executive Officer of Greater China and reports directly to
IHG’s Chief Executive, Richard Solomons. Based in
Shanghai, Barr is responsible for the management,
growth and profitability of the company’s fastest growing
region, including the Chinese mainland, Hong Kong SAR,
Macau SAR and Taiwan, with a portfolio of more than
150 hotels in operation and another 150 hotels in the development pipeline.
Prior to this, Barr was Chief Operating Officer, Australia, New Zealand, South
Pacific. In that role, he served as the most senior IHG Executive in the ANZSP
region, overseeing the business and performance of over 54 hotels. Barr was Vice
President of Operations for Midscale brands in North America prior to his move to
Australia, where he had oversight of 175 hotels operating under the Holiday Inn,
Staybridge Suites and Candlewood Suites brands. From 2001 to early 2005, Barr
was Vice President of Operations for the Holiday Inn brand. Over that four year
period, he had growing operational responsibility for up to 68 managed hotels
in the U.S. and Canada. Barr joined IHG as Vice President of Sales and Revenue
Management when Bristol Hotels and Resorts were acquired by IHG in early 2000
and he was heavily involved in the integration of Bristol into IHG. During his tenure
with Bristol, Barr held numerous positions of increasing responsibility over an eight
year period. He was a general manager, an area director of sales and marketing
and an area director of operations.
Barr is a trained chef and has extensive food and beverage experience. He
has held past positions on the Board of Directors for the Georgia Hospitality and
Travel Association, the Board of Advisors for the Atlanta Chamber of Commerce, the
Advisory Board for the Tourism and Transport Forum in Australia and on the Advisory Board of Bond University’s School of Hotel, Resort and Tourism Management.
P. Peter Benudiz
some of the most significant and well-known real estate and hotel projects.
Benudiz is consistently recognized as one of the leading hospitality lawyers in the
United States. He was ranked in the top tier of lawyers nationwide for Leisure &
Hospitality by 2010 Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business.
Benudiz is a member of the International Society of Hospitality Consultants and the
Los Angeles County Bar Association. He received his J.D. from Harvard University
Law School and his A.B. from the University of California, Berkeley.
Scott D. Berman
Principal and Industry Leader, Hospitality and Leisure
PwC
Scott D. Berman is the Industry Leader of the Hospitality
& Leisure Practice of PricewaterhouseCoopers L.L.P. and
a Principal in the Real Estate Business Advisory practice
in Miami. Berman is a specialist in the field of hotel and
resort development and operations with 25 years of
experience providing consulting services in the United
States, South America, Central America, Mexico, the
Caribbean Basin, Europe, the Far East and the former Soviet Union. He has
experience with a multitude of leisure time and tourism related projects including,
but not limited to, hotels and resorts of all types, cruise lines, vacation ownership
and resort residential development, recreational facilities such as spas and
marinas, cruise ships, casinos, theme parks and other public assembly facilities.
Berman is an active member of the Urban Land Institute Hotel Development Council (HDC) and its former Chair. He currently is a member of the Board of
Directors of the American Resort Development Association, and a member of the
Advisory Board of the Cornell University Center for Hospitality Research. Berman
is Chairman of the Industry Relations Committee for the Greater Miami and the
Beaches Hotel Association and a member of the International Society of Hospitality
Consultants. He has also appeared on CNN’s Inside Business as a leisure industry
expert and is frequently quoted on hospitality issues in The Wall Street Journal,
USA Today, The New York Times, Forbes, and a variety of industry publications.
Berman holds a B.S. from Cornell University’s School of Hotel Administration.
Partner
Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy LLP
P. Peter Benudiz is a Partner at Milbank, Tweed, Hadley &
McCloy LLP and co-heads the Firm’s Gaming and
Hospitality Practice. He is experienced in all legal
disciplines critical to hospitality and real estate projects,
including private equity deals, traditional construction
and permanent loans, convertible and participating debt,
mezzanine debt deals, securitizations, and other hybrid
real estate and corporate debt transactions. He also has experience negotiating
and documenting highly complex workouts and restructurings involving hospitality
assets and real estate secured debt, both inside and outside of the bankruptcy
context. He has represented some of the world’s largest financial institutions and
private equity funds in connection with the financing, workouts and acquisitions of
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34 th ANNUAL NEW YORK UNIVERSITY
International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
Raymond N. Bickson
Michael Booth
Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer
The Indian Hotels Company, Ltd.
Founding Principal
BAMO
Raymond N. Bickson, whose hospitality career spans
more than 30 years and four continents joined Taj Hotels
in January 2003 to oversee all luxury property
operations. In July 2003, he was named Managing
Director and Chief Executive Officer of The Indian Hotels
Company Limited, a division of India’s Tata Group, with
responsibility for all Taj Hotels operations and management, hospitality and travel subsidiary companies. Under his leadership, the Taj
Group has seen rapid global expansion, with new developments and acquisitions in
key world markets. The Taj Group has formed strategic partnerships with other
luxury hotel chains and cruise lines; developed innovative new products, including
India’s first luxury safari lodges and tours, and the launch of the new Ginger Hotels,
Gateway Hotels and Resorts and the Vivanta by Taj Brand.
Previously, Bickson served as Vice President and General Manager of The
Mark in New York, The Rafael Group Hoteliers Monaco, and with Mandarin Oriental
Hotel Group for 15 years. His prior experience includes management positions with
Regent International Hotels in New York, Chicago, Dallas, Puerto Rico, Melbourne
and Shanghai, and training positions with Hotel Plaza Athenee Paris, Le Montreux
Palace Switzerland and the Kahala Hilton Hawaii. Bickson is a member of the World
Travel & Tourism Council; the International Business Leaders Forum; and the advisory boards of The Leading Hotels of the World and École Hôtelière Lausanne. He
is also the recipient of the Corporate Hotelier of the World Award 2007, by HOTELS
Magazine. Bickson attended The École Hôtelière Lausanne – Advanced Management Programme at Harvard Business School, and was awarded an honorary
Doctorate by Johnson & Wales University, Rhode Island.
Michael Booth co-founded San Francisco-based interior
design firm BAMO in 1991. With over 25 years of
experience, Booth shares his time between hospitality
and residential commissions with varying aesthetic
requirements. His work has been featured in Hospitality
Design, Architectural Digest, House & Garden, New York
Times Sunday Magazine, Metropolitan Home, Western
Interiors, and Elite Traveler.
Booth’s hospitality experience includes several Four Seasons Hotels including
Boston and Hualalai; Rosewood Sand Hill in Menlo Park, California; Mansion on
Turtle Creek in Dallas; Estancia Hotel and Terranea Resort in southern California;
and The Peninsula Chicago.
Booth received his Bachelor of Fine Arts and Bachelor of Architecture degrees
from the Rhode Island School of Design. In 2010 Booth and his fellow BAMO
co-founders were inducted into Hospitality Design magazine’s Platinum Circle. In
2011, BAMO was recognized by Interior Design and Hotels magazines as the 2011
Gold Key Designer of the Year.
Greg Bingaman
Director Asset Management
Westmont Hospitality Group
Greg Bingaman is Director Asset Management of
Westmont Hospitality Group, where he manages luxury
and full service hotel portfolios in a variety of partnerships and private equity funds. Previously, Bingaman
served as Executive Director Asset Management of
Legacy Hotels REIT, where he oversaw a $2.0 billion
publicly traded hotel portfolio. In the late 90’s, Bingaman
was a Founding Principal of Boutique Hotel Group, a privately held hotel management company headquartered in New York City. Starting his hospitality career at
The Ritz-Carlton Chicago, Bingaman has worked in hotel operations with Four
Seasons, Swissotel, Ritz-Carlton, and Fairmont. Bingaman earned an MMH degree
in Real Estate Finance from the School of Hotel Administration at Cornell University
and a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from DePauw University. Bingaman is an
active member of the Hospitality Asset Managers Association.
Richard Born
Principal
BD Hotels
In June of 1985 Richard Born left his surgical residency
and took a job as a broker with Brenner & Lewis, a
boutique brokerage firm specializing in hotels. Within six
months he found himself closing multiple large
transactions and decided to strike out on his own.
Born partnered with Ira Drukier in 1986 to form
BD Hotels for the purpose of acquiring and developing
hospitality assets in NYC. Currently, BD Hotels has ownership interests in several
billion dollars worth of properties within a significantly under leveraged portfolio.
They have slowly and methodically built their holdings through the acquisition and
improvement of well located undervalued buildings which they generally continue
to hold.
BD Hotels owns and operates 25 hotels with over 5000 rooms. Included in
their portfolio are: The Mercer, The Bowery, The Maritime, The Greenwich, The Jane
and the POD Hotels. They have developed every hospitality segment from small
luxury boutiques to large tourist properties. In addition to their hospitality business, Born and Drukier have developed multiple residential rentals, cooperatives,
condominiums as well as dormitories.
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International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
Due to space and sustainability, speaker bios have been
edited for brevity. Please consider the environment
before printing this document.
Jacques E. Brand
Managing Director, Global Co-Head of Investment Banking Coverage
and Advisory
Deutsche Global Bank Securities
Jacques E. Brand is Global Co-Head of Investment Banking
Coverage and Advisory and is a member of the Corporate
and Investment Bank (CIB) Executive Committee.
Brand is responsible for directing Investment
Banking and client coverage efforts globally for the
Consumers, Financial Sponsors, Healthcare, Industrials, Media, Natural Resources, REGLL, Technology and
Telecom practices. Over the span of his 25 year Wall Street career, Brand has
advised numerous clients on strategic and capital raising transactions across all
global industries.
Prior to joining Deutsche Bank, Brand worked for Lehman Brothers. He is an
active board member of The Deutsche Bank Foundation and The Jewish Museum
in New York. Most recently, he was appointed Chairman of the Board of the
American Institute of Contemporary German Studies. Brand earned an M.B.A. from
Harvard Business School.
George J. Brennan
Executive Vice President, Sales and Marketing
Interstate Hotels & Resorts
George J. Brennan has broad-based sales and marketing
experience in several segments of the travel industry. As
a leader of Interstate Hotels & Resorts’ sales & marketing
department, Brennan oversees sales, marketing and
revenue management activities in support of Interstate’s
portfolio of independent, branded, full-service and selectservice hotels. In this position, he develops and
implements initiatives to increase hotels’ market share and achieve cost-effective
marketing communications, and develops interactive marketing direct to
consumers and through third-party online retailer networks, database direct
marketing, advertising and public relations. He leads the implementation and
measurement of Interstate standards for optimal revenue management through all
electronic, branded and independent reservations channels.
Brennan joined Interstate Hotels Corporation in 1999 following a successful career at Carnival Resorts & Casinos, where he was Senior Vice President of
Sales and Marketing. In this position, he was responsible for all corporate, hotel
and casino marketing, including advertising, public relations, revenue planning and
yield management, direct marketing programs, sales and reservations. He was a
member of Carnival’s development committee, providing marketing strategy and
planning to the program. Prior to that, he was Senior Vice President of Sales &
Marketing for Carnival Corporation’s 1540-room Crystal Palace Resort & Casino.
While in that position, he was instrumental in the marketing and expansion of
Carnival Airlines to support the company’s resorts in the Caribbean.
Before joining Carnival Corporation, Brennan held a variety of executive
sales and marketing positions at Eastern Airlines, including Senior Vice President
of Marketing, Vice President of Advertising, Vice President of Field Sales and Vice
President of Passenger Sales. He is a graduate of the University of Massachusetts,
School of Business.
William A. Brewer III
Partner
Bickel & Brewer
William A. Brewer has earned a nationwide reputation as
one of the most successful lawyers in the United States
practicing exclusively in the field of complex commercial
litigation and dispute resolution. Under Brewer’s
direction, Bickel & Brewer has become renowned for its
innovative handling of major disputes in the hospitality
industry. For the past two decades, Bickel & Brewer has
represented hotel franchisors, management companies, owners, developers and
investors in some of the highest-profile litigation in the hospitality industry.
Bickel & Brewer has been a featured participant at every New York University
International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference since 1992. In further
support of Brewer’s commitment to executive education in the hospitality industry,
he serves as an editorial board member of the Hotel Business Review. He is a
member of several leading industry associations, including the American Hotel &
Motel Association and the Academy of Hospitality Industry Attorneys. Brewer received his Bachelor of Arts degree, cum laude, from St. John’s University, followed
by his Juris Doctor, cum laude, from the Albany Law School of Union University.
Thereafter, Brewer attended New York University School of Law where he received
a Master of Laws in Trade Regulation.
Lynne P. Brown
Senior Vice President for University Relations and Public Affairs
New York University
Lynne P. Brown was appointed Senior Vice President for
University Relations and Public Affairs in June 2003. Brown is responsible for the University’s interaction with
government at all levels, outreach to the community,
strategic communications, and university events. Brown
oversees the offices of: Government and Community
Affairs, Civic Engagement, University Events, Advertising
and Publications, Web Communications, Media Production, and Public Affairs.
For the last four years, Brown has also led two major initiatives: “NYU 2031:
NYU in NYC”, the University’s first comprehensive strategy for growth; and the
NYU Sustainability Task Force, a university-wide group charged with reducing the
University’s environmental footprint.
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34 th ANNUAL NEW YORK UNIVERSITY
International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
Before coming to NYU, Brown worked on Capitol Hill for Congressman (and
now NYU President Emeritus) John Brademas (D-IN) and Congressman Thomas S.
Foley (D-WA), respectively, during their tenures as Majority Whips in the House of
Representatives.
A native New Yorker, Brown serves on a number of civic boards, including the
Union Square Partnership, where she is president, and Village Alliance business
improvement district. She is a trustee emerita of Manhattan College (Riverdale,
New York).
A political scientist by training, Brown received her B.A. from Smith College,
where she was elected Phi Beta Kappa, and went on to receive her Ph.D. in Political Science from The Johns Hopkins University. At NYU, she teaches a graduate
seminar on the politics of higher education.
Benjamin Q. Brunt
Principal
Noble Investment Group
Ben Brunt is a principal with responsibility for sourcing
and underwriting lodging and hospitality investments
encompassing asset and debt acquisitions, market and
investment analysis, new development opportunities,
and brand positioning.
Prior to joining Noble as a Partner in 2005, he
was Vice President of Investments and Development at
Songy Partners and a senior member of the investment team at Hardin Capital.
Brunt began his career in hospitality as an Operations Analyst for Homestead
Suites and later gained experience in the field as a Multi-Unit Property Manager.
Brunt received a B.A. from Trinity College and an M.B.A. from Southern Methodist
University.
Jennifer Bobrow Burns
Director, Industry Relations and Administration
Preston Robert Tisch Center for Hospitality, Tourism, and Sports
Management, School of Continuing and Professional Studies,
New York University
Jennifer Bobrow Burns is the Director of Industry
Relations and Administration at the NYU-SCPS Preston
Robert Tisch Center for Hospitality, Tourism, and Sports
Management. She leads a department responsible for
internship and career services, alumni activities, budget,
human resources, marketing and communications, and
public events.
Burns’s past experience includes positions as Assistant Dean of Career Services for Quinnipiac University’s School of Communications and Associate Director
for Career Development at Columbia University’s Center for Career Education. She
has authored three books, including Career Opportunities in Travel and Hospitality
(Checkmark Books, 2010). Burns holds a B.A. in English from Cornell University
and an M.A. in Counseling and Guidance from New York University.
Alton M. Calhoun
Managing Director
Jones Lang LaSalle Hotels
Alton M. Calhoun, is a Managing Director of Jones Lang
LaSalle Hotels Select Service Division. He is based in
Atlanta and specializes in the marketing and disposition
of Mid-Market Hotels, Hotel Notes and Portfolios. Calhoun
came to Jones Lang LaSalle in 2005 with their
acquisition of Thompson Calhoun Fair, where he was a
founding partner. Since 1983, he has been directly
responsible for the disposition of over 1,000 hotels and hotel notes. Calhoun has
represented the majority of major hotel owners in America. Calhoun’s resultsoriented brokerage mentality and consistent dedication to the mid-market hotels
segment consistently places him as one of the top producers in the industry.
During his career, he has held hotel real estate positions with Marriott, Choice
Hotels, Pannell Kerr Foster among others. Calhoun holds a Bachelor of Science
from Georgia State University’s Cecil B. Day School of Hospitality and holds the
prestigious CCIM Designation.
Anthony Capuano
Executive Vice President and Chief Development Officer
Marriott International, Inc.
Anthony Capuano is Executive Vice President and Chief
Development Officer. He is responsible for the
development of all Marriott lodging brands worldwide
and supervises offices in Accra, Bangkok, Beijing, Delhi,
Dubai, Ho Chi Minh City, Hong Kong, Istanbul, Jakarta,
London, Madrid, Moscow, Paris, Rome, São Paulo, Tokyo,
Toronto, Zagreb, Zurich and multiple offices in the U.S.
Capuano began his Marriott International career in 1995 as part of the
Market Planning and Feasibility team. Between 1997 and 2005, he led Marriott’s
full service development efforts in the Western U.S. and Canada. In early 2008,
Capuano responsibilities expanded to include North America, the Caribbean and
Latin America.
Capuano began his professional career in Laventhol and Horwath’s Bostonbased Leisure Time Advisory Group. He then joined Kenneth Leventhal and
Company’s hospitality consulting group in Los Angeles, CA. Capuano earned his
Bachelor’s degree in Hotel Administration from Cornell University. He is an active
member of the Cornell Society of Hotelmen.
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34 th ANNUAL NEW YORK UNIVERSITY
International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
Isabelle Claver
Director
PwC
Isabelle Claver is a Director in the Hospitality & Leisure
Consulting Group of PricewaterhouseCoopers L.L.P.
based in Miami, Florida. Prior to joining PwC, Claver
worked in luxury hotels in various operational roles in
Europe, Asia and the United States. Today, she manages
the day-to-day operations of the Hospitality & Leisure
practice in Miami.
Since joining PwC in 1997, Claver has worked on a multitude of engagements for clients ranging from financial institutions and developers to governmental agencies. Claver is a specialist in the mixed-use resort development sector
with expertise in fractional ownership, resort residential development, condominium-hotel projects and recreational facilities such as golf courses and marinas.
Claver has also testified in Federal Court and in arbitration hearings as an expert
witness on hospitality related issues.
Claver holds a B.S. from Cornell University’s School of Hotel Administration
and is an active member of the Cornell Hotel Society, South Florida Chapter and
Urban Land Institute. She also received a diploma in Hotel Management with
honors from the Hotel Institute Montreux in Switzerland.
Lawrence Cohen
Executive Consultant, Hospitality Group Leader
Marks Paneth & Shron LLP
Lawrence Cohen is an Executive Consultant at Marks
Paneth & Shron LLP. He also serves as the firm’s
Hospitality Group Leader. He rejoined the firm after
having served for many years as the President and Chief
Executive Officer of The Griffin Group, the private equity
investment and management company of the late Merv
Griffin that invested in a variety of industries including
media, entertainment and hospitality.
Cohen has strong roots in the hospitality industry. The Griffin Group and its
affiliates owned and managed properties that ranged from high-end resorts to limited service properties. Cohen spearheaded all aspects of the business including
acquisition, development and redevelopment, financing, management team hiring,
supervision of operations and eventual sale.
Today, Cohen draws on his deep experience and serves clients as a business
“coach.” For mature companies, he will advise on strategies to reposition their
companies in the current business environment. For start-up companies, he will
delve into the company’s business plan and advise on the growth of its infrastructure. While Cohen will usually directly assist in the business plan preparation
process and support the money-raising process, he will also often “roll-up his
sleeves” and assist with the execution of his advice including negotiating the business points of lender agreements, leases, distribution agreements, etc. as well as
hiring and/or terminating employees.
Cohen has had business interests in the Los Angeles area for more than
25 years and shares responsibility for the firm’s operations on the West Coast. In
addition, he has a passion for addressing children’s needs. He was instrumental
in the formation of a treatment center for children and young adults afflicted with
autism and serves on the Board of Directors of the Ascent School for Individuals
with Autism on Long Island. A certified public accountant for more than 25 years,
Cohen holds a Bachelor of Arts degree, cum laude in Economics and Accounting
from Queens College of The City University of New York.
Thomas G. Conforti
Chief Financial Officer
Wyndham Worldwide Corporation
Thomas G. Conforti is Chief Financial Officer of Wyndham
Worldwide Corporation with responsibility for corporate
accounting and finance, treasury, investor relations,
mergers and acquisitions, and information technology.
With more than 30 brands and revenues of over $4
billion, Wyndham Worldwide is one of the world’s largest
hospitality companies, employing approximately 30,000
people and operating in 100 countries.
Prior to his appointment to Wyndham Worldwide in September of 2009,
Conforti was Chief Financial Officer of DineEquity Inc., the publicly held company
which is the franchisor and operator of restaurants under the Applebee’s Neighborhood Grill & Bar and IHOP brands. Earlier in his career, Conforti held a number of
general management, financial and strategic roles over a ten-year period in the
Consumer Products Division of the Walt Disney Company. He also held numerous
finance and strategy roles within the College Textbook Publishing Division of CBS
and the Soft Drink Division of PepsiCo.
Conforti is past president of the Board of Trustees for Flintridge Preparatory School and served as trustee at the Chandler School in southern California.
Conforti holds an undergraduate degree in Economics from the University of Connecticut and an M.B.A. with a concentration in Finance from New York University.
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34 th ANNUAL NEW YORK UNIVERSITY
International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
Thomas J. Corcoran, Jr.
Richard Cremieux
Chairman of the Board
FelCor Lodging Trust Incorporated
Chair, North America Hotels, Resorts and Tourism Practice
Baker & McKenzie LLP
Richard Cremieux has extensive experience in
representing clients in the purchase, sale, exchange,
development (including land use issues), construction,
financing, leasing and management of commercial real
estate of all types, with a concentration in hotel and
resort properties.
Cremieux’s practice focuses on hospitality related
transactions, including representation of both hotel owners and hotel managers in
the structure and negotiation of hotel management agreements and related franchise and branding documentation. Cremieux also represents clients in complex
real estate financings and workouts, the structuring of project delivery arrangements including complex design-build arrangements, and common ownership law
including condominium, cooperative, and club regimes.
Cremieux is the Chairman of the Firm’s North American Hotels, Resorts, and
Tourism Practice Group. In 2008, Cremieux was one of only 22 Illinois real estate
attorneys named in the listing of Who’s Who / United States Real Estate Lawyers.
He is acknowledged in the 2010 Expert Guide to World’s Leading Lawyers as one
of the top real estate lawyers in the United States, and is recognized in the 2009
edition of The Legal 500 as a leading professional in hotel and resort development.
Cremieux is a member of the American Bar Association, the Illinois State Bar Association and the Chicago Bar Association. Cremieux received a B.A. and J.D. from
Loyola University, and was a member of law review.
Thomas J. Corcoran, Jr. is Chairman of the Board of
FelCor Lodging Trust. In 1991, he co-founded FelCor, Inc.
with Hervey Feldman and in 1994, FelCor went public
with six hotels and a market capitalization of approximately $120 million as a hotel REIT. In 1996, FelCor was
listed on the New York Stock Exchange and in 1998,
changed its name to FelCor Lodging Trust Inc. Corcoran
served as President and Chief Executive Officer of FelCor since its formation until
his appointment to Chairman of the Board in 2006. Corcoran’s long history of management in the hospitality industry began
with Brock Hotel Corporation in Topeka, Kansas. During his 11 years with Brock,
Corcoran’s roles in the company included President and Chief Executive Officer
and a Member of the Board of Directors for Chuck E. Cheese Entertainment, Inc.
Corcoran’s board appointments include: past Chairman of the American Hotel &
Lodging Association (AH&LA), and past Chairman of the IHG Owners Association.
After serving as independent board member since December 2010, Corcoran was
appointed Chairman of the Board of Sammons Enterprises. Sammons Enterprises
is a multi-faceted, global holding corporation that owns and operates businesses
across a diverse range of industries.
Christopher Cowdray
Chief Executive Officer
Dorchester Collection
Kenneth E. Cruse
Christopher Cowdray has been Chief Executive Officer of
the London-based hotel management company,
Dorchester Collection, since November 2007. A native of
Zimbabwe and a graduate of the Columbia Business
School Executive Programme, he brings nearly 30 years
of extensive international experience in hotel management on four continents to his position. Previous roles
include General Manager of The Dorchester and Managing Director of Claridge’s,
London, and General Manager of the Al Bustan Palace Hotel, Oman.
With a vision to transform Dorchester Collection into the ultimate hotel
management company, Cowdray has outlined ambitious growth plans of 15 hotels
within the next five to ten years, predominantly in North America and Europe.
Cowdray is a regular speaker at major international customer service conferences in the UK and U.S., a Fellow of the Hotel Catering Institute Management
Association, a Master Innholder, honorary Professor at Thames Valley University
and past chairman of the British Hospitality Association. He has been granted
the Freedom of the City of London and is also a trustee of the David Shepherd
Wildlife Foundation.
President and Chief Executive Officer
Sunstone Hotel Investors
Kenneth E. Cruse is President and Chief Executive Officer
of Sunstone Hotel Investors, Inc., and is a member of
Sunstone’s Board of Directors. Prior to his current
position, Cruse was Executive Vice President and Chief
Financial Officer. Cruse joined Sunstone in April 2005 as
Senior Vice President, Asset Management and Corporate
Transactions. In September 2006, he was named Senior
Vice President, Corporate Finance and in January 2007, Cruse became the Chief
Financial Officer. Cruse has over 20 years of experience in hotel investment,
operations and finance. For the eight years prior to joining Sunstone, Cruse worked
in a variety of roles for Host Marriott Corporation, the predecessor of Host Hotels
and Resorts, Inc., most recently as Vice President, Corporate Finance. Cruse earned
an M.B.A. degree with distinction from Georgetown University.
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34 th ANNUAL NEW YORK UNIVERSITY
International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
Peter E. Dannemiller
Arthur de Haast
Executive Vice President
Hodges Ward Elliott
Chairman
Jones Lang LaSalle Hotels
Peter E. Dannemiller is Executive Vice President of
Hodges Ward Elliott, the leading hotel brokerage and
investment-banking firm in the U.S. Since joining HWE
in 1996, Dannemiller has become one of the leading
producers within the firm and the hotel investment sales
and financing industry. Dannemiller has teamed with
Partner Mark Elliott to close sales and financing
transactions totaling over $20 billion in volume during his tenure with the firm.
With a strong background in finance, Dannemiller is primarily responsible for
HWE’s debt placement activity, which has totaled nearly $3 billion over the last
7 years.
Dannemiller has specialized in real estate analytics and investment since
starting with The Prudential Realty Group in 1991. While with Prudential, Dannemiller developed both a passion for and unique expertise in the valuation and investment sales execution of a variety of real estate asset classes, which has been
fine-tuned within the hospitality sector over his fifteen years with HWE.
Dannemiller has been a speaker/panelist at various conferences such as the
Atlanta Hotel Investment Conference, Hotel Asset Manager’s Association (HAMA)
Conference, The Lodging Conference, the Midwest Lodging Investment Summit,
Meet the Money, and the New York University Hospitality Industry Investment Conference. Dannemiller has been quoted in Hotel Business and Lodging Hospitality
magazines as a hospitality brokerage expert.
Dannemiller holds a Bachelor of Science in Business from the University of
North Carolina at Chapel Hill and an M.B.A. from Emory University.
Arthur de Haast is the Chairman of Jones Lang LaSalle
Hotels, a global real estate services firm focused
exclusively on hotels and hospitality. Jones Lang LaSalle
Hotels provides acquisition and financing advice,
valuations, investment sales and asset management for
luxury hotels, select service and budget hotels, smaller
hotels and pubs, from single assets to large portfolios
and mixed-use developments. de Haast has extensive experience within the global hotel market having
led a wide range of both transactional and advisory assignments. He is a regular
commentator on the global hotel investment market, speaking frequently at major
conferences, and is often quoted in the world’s leading business publications.
de Haast is a Fellow of the Institute of Hospitality and a member of its Executive Council. The Institute of Hospitality is the professional body for managers and
aspiring managers working and studying in the hospitality, leisure and tourism industry. He is also a member of the Advisory Board of The Scottish Business School,
University of Strathclyde, Glasgow.
Ted Darnall
Principal and Chief Operating Officer
HEI Hotels & Resorts
Ted Darnall is the Chief Operating Officer and Principal of
HEI Hotels & Resorts. He is responsible for guidance and
growth of HEI’s property operations, asset management
and design and construction divisions.
A 30-year veteran of the hospitality industry and
widely recognized as one of the top hotel operators in
the industry, Darnall has held executive positions with
Starwood, Interstate and Marriott. Darnall’s industry recognition is garnered from
his innovative initiatives, performance-driven, results oriented focus and motivational leadership. Prior to joining HEI, Darnall was with Starwood for 10 years
where he held various executive positions which included Chief Operating Officer
of Starwood Lodging Corporation, President of North America Operations, and
most recently, President of Starwood Real Estate Group. Prior to Starwood, Darnall
was with Interstate Hotels for over 14 years, reaching the position of Senior Vice
President, Operations. Darnall began his hospitality career with Marriott Corporation, where he held a number of management positions.
Michael A. Depatie
Chief Executive Officer
Kimpton Hotels and Restaurants
Michael A. Depatie is Chief Executive Officer of Kimpton
Hotels and Restaurants, LLC and is also a Member of
Kimpton’s Board of Directors. He is responsible for
overseeing all personnel and systems to acquire,
develop, renovate, operate and maintain the growing
number of hotels and restaurants managed by Kimpton
and to administer the overall operation of the company
and the assets it manages. Depatie also oversees the investment of the $157
million Kimpton Hospitality Partners Fund I and $202 million Kimpton Hospitality
Partners Fund II.
Depatie has held senior finance and development roles in a number of
rapidly growing lodging companies. During his career, Depatie has been integral
in financing initiatives raising over $3 billion in debt and equity in numerous
public and private financings. After completing his M.B.A. at the Harvard Business
School, Depatie started his professional career with the Trammell Crow Company.
He went on to become the Senior Vice President of Finance and Development with
the Residence Inn Company which he helped grow from seven hotels to 100 by the
time the company was sold to Marriott in 1987 for $260 million. Depatie then cofounded Summerfield Suites which was sold to Patriot American Corporation and
subsequently to Hyatt. Depatie also served as Chief Financial Officer of La Quinta
where the Company’s equity market cap grew eightfold from $200 million to $1.6
billion during his tenure as Chief Financial Officer. Depatie then served as Chief
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34 th ANNUAL NEW YORK UNIVERSITY
International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
Financial Officer of Sunterra which grew from nine resorts when he joined the
company to become the world’s largest resort hotel vacation ownership company
at that time with 89 resorts in nine countries and over 6,000 employees. Depatie is
a member of the Hotel Development Council of the Urban Land Institute and he is
also a member of the Real Estate Roundtable. Depatie also serves on the Board of
Directors of Jamba Juice.
Gary E. Dietz
Group Publisher
Lodging Hospitality Magazine
Gary Dietz is the Publisher of Lodging Hospitality
magazine, the premier feature magazine serving the U.S.
lodging industry. For nearly 60 years, Lodging Hospitality
has been a leader in serving the information needs of the
U.S. lodging industry through print, online and in-person
products. Since becoming publisher in 1990, Dietz has
served the industry in a number of ways. He’s been a
member of the advisory boards for the New York University International Hospitality
Industry Investment Conference and the New York University Preston Robert Tisch
Center for Hospitality, Tourism, and Sports Management. He is a committee
member of the American Hotel Foundation’s annual Golf and Tennis Classic and is
an allied member of the AH&LA and AAHOA.
Robert W. Dockery
Partner
Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP
Robert W. Dockery’s practice focuses on corporate and
securities law. He has represented issuers in a number
of securities transactions, including private placements
and underwritten public offerings of common stock,
preferred stock and debt. He has also represented public
and private purchasers and sellers in corporate and real
estate acquisitions, and has advised borrowers in
commercial finance transactions, including secured and unsecured corporate debt
and real estate financings. Dockery also advises companies on periodic reporting
compliance issues under securities laws and regulations, corporate governance
issues and general corporate matters.
His transaction representations include the following: a public hotel company
in multiple offerings of equity and debt; a public hotel company in multiple mortgage loan facilities; a public hotel company in the formation of a joint venture with
an institutional investor; a public hotel company in its acquisition of hotels and
related assets from private equity fund sellers; a private fund in an acquisition of a
public restaurant company; and a private fund in an acquisition of a grocery store
business from a public company.
Dockery is currently a member of the Dallas office’s Diversity Committee and
an associate member of the National Association of Real Estate Investment Trusts.
He is a member of the American Bar Association, the State Bar of Texas and the
Dallas Bar Association. Dockery is a frequent speaker on corporate finance and
securities topics. He has been named as a Texas “Super Lawyer” and was named
to the 2008 BTI National Client All Star Team.
Dockery received his B.A. in History from Texas Tech University and his
J.D. magna cum laude from the Texas Tech University School of Law, where he
was a member of the Order of the Coif and was assistant editor of the Texas Tech
Law Review.
Dorothy Dowling
Senior Vice President, Marketing and Sales
Best Western International, Inc.
Dorothy Dowling is Senior Vice President, Marketing and
Sales for Best Western International, Inc. The 20-year
hotel industry veteran directs all marketing and sales
strategies, overseeing the brand’s loyalty program,
consumer and field marketing activities, advertising,
public relations and e-commerce. Since joining Best
Western International, Inc. In 2004, Dowling has
implemented a number of measures to increase market share and contemporize
the iconic Best Western brand. She re-branded the company’s loyalty program to
Best Western Rewards, increased its membership by 5 million and doubled its
revenue contribution percentage to hotels. Under Dowling’s leadership, Best
Western has strengthened its strategic partnership with AAA / CAA. Earlier this
year, Best Western won three out of five AAA / CAA Partner Awards for Best
Marketing, Best Sales and its second consecutive overall Lodging Partner of the
Year. Dowling has also overseen critical user experience improvements to the
bestwestern.com booking channel, as well as the launch of its multiple mobile
initiatives, including the iPhone application, Best Western to Go.
Dowling currently serves on the Executive Committee of the HSMAI Americas
Board of Directors, completing her tenure as its chair earlier this year. She also
serves on HSMAI’s Global Board of Directors, and is past president of HSMAI
Canada. Dowling has been honored with a number of industry awards, including the prestigious American Hotel Foundation Award for Best Practices in Guest
Loyalty Programs. Twice she has been listed among HSMAI’s Top 25 Extraordinary
Minds in Sales and Marketing. Dowling serves on the North American board for the
U.S. Travel Association and is a member of the American Society of Travel Agents’
Allied Marketing Council. Before joining Best Western, Dowling held executive-level
positions with ARAMARK’s parks, resorts and conventions divisions. She began
her hospitality career in Canada after earning a joint Masters of Arts degree in
Sociology and Leisure Studies from the University of Waterloo in Ontario. In 2008,
Dorothy received that university’s Distinguished Alumni Award.
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34 th ANNUAL NEW YORK UNIVERSITY
International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
David Duncan
President
Denihan Hospitality Group
David Duncan is President of Denihan Hospitality Group,
where he is responsible for all functions of the business,
including executing the company’s aggressive plans and
driving excellence in hotel performance. He reports into
Denihan’s co-Chief Executive Officers and owners,
Brooke Denihan Barrett and Patrick Denihan.
Since joining Denihan as Chief Financial Officer in
2003 and during its recent evolution, Duncan has been behind many of the company’s key initiatives and milestones. In 2011, Duncan led the efforts for the company’s $910-million joint venture with Pebblebrook Hotel Trust as its equity partner
in six of Denihan’s core assets in Manhattan. He was also the driving force behind
Denihan’s 2006 recapitalization when Denihan and Barrett acquired the company
from other family members. Prior to joining Denihan, Duncan was a Managing
Director of the Guggenheim Group, an investment management and advisory firm,
where he advised on day-to-day financial management. Earlier, Duncan worked for
Winstar Communications as Real Estate Division President prior to becoming Chief
Financial Officer and leading the company through its restructuring and ultimate
sale. Duncan previously was the Chief Financial Officer of real estate capital markets at GE Capital, overseeing the operations of a business unit with $100 million
in net income while at the same time serving as the co-head of a $2 billion diverse
real estate portfolio with involvement in all acquisition and sale transactions.
Duncan started his career as a certified public accountant with Kenneth Leventhal & Company in Los Angeles and Boston and then Ernst & Young, LLP. Duncan
is a graduate of Western Michigan University.
Joel M. Eisemann
Officer; Chief Development Officer, Select Service and Extended-Stay Brands;
Executive Vice President, Global Asset Management; and Senior Vice President,
Lodging Development, Asia/Pacific, based in Hong Kong. Prior to joining Marriott,
he was with Laventhol & Horwath in Tampa, Florida for 3 years.
Eisemann is a graduate of the Master of Professional Studies program at
Cornell University’s School of Hotel Administration, and he received his A.B. degree
in Economics from Stanford University.
Robert E. Ekman
Vice President, Franchise Sales & Development-Midscale,
North America
IHG (InterContinental Hotels Group)
Robert E. Ekman leads strategic franchise sales and
development activity for Holiday Inn Hotels and Resorts,
Holiday Inn Express, Staybridge Suites and Candlewood
Suites in the U.S., Canada, Mexico and the Caribbean.
Ekman is very involved with the Holiday Inn Resort brand
growth initiative and is active in new brand delivery for
the company.
Ekman has more than 27 years experience in the hospitality industry in roles
ranging from hotel, resort and restaurant operations sales and marketing, mostly
with Marriott. Ekman was Co-Founder and President of a third party hotel management and acquisitions firm, The Bricton Group and the Co-owner and Developer of
a restaurant and lounge. Ekman began his career in the late 1970’s working his
way up the ranks from busboy, bellman, van driver, front desk clerk and manager
and other front and back of the house positions.
Ekman received his Bachelor’s degree in Hotel & Restaurant Management
from the University of Wisconsin-Stout. He also serves on the Board of Directors of
the School of Hospitality at Ferris State University in Big Rapids, Michigan.
Chief Development Officer, The Americas
IHG (InterContinental Hotels Group)
Mark W. Elliott
Joel M. Eisemann joined IHG (InterContinental Hotels
Group) in September 2011 and is Chief Development
Officer, The Americas. He is responsible for all
development and conversion activities (both managed
and franchised) for the InterContinental, Crowne Plaza,
Hotel Indigo, Staybridge Suites, Candlewood Suites,
Holiday Inn and Holiday Inn Express brands in the
Americas. Eisemann is also responsible for the company’s Capital Investments &
Transactions group for the Americas which handles asset dispositions, workouts
and restructurings and asset management. Further, Eisemann heads up the
region’s Owner and Franchise Relations team which leads the IHG organization to
attract, support and grow with those owners and franchisees who will help the
company to continue to grow its brands’ distribution and preference. Previously, Eisemann was with Marriott International for 29 years, where he
held a number of senior positions including Chief Owner & Franchise Relations
Senior Managing Director
Hodges Ward Elliott
Mark W. Elliott is Senior Managing Director of Hodges
Ward Elliott. In the last 20 years, Elliott has personally
sold and/or financed approximately 1,050 hotels, totaling
over 212,000 rooms, with a dollar volume in excess of
$28 billion. Elliott is currently a member of Industry Real
Estate Finance Advisory Council (“IREFAC”), and is
mentioned annually as the leading hotel broker by Real
Estate Forum magazine and Commercial Property News. He has written articles
for Real Estate Finance Journal and a chapter in the Hotel Investment Handbook,
as well as being quoted in the Wall Street Journal as a lodging industry expert.
Elliott has also been a speaker at the Harvard Business School.
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34 th ANNUAL NEW YORK UNIVERSITY
International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
James P. Evans
Robin Farley
President and Chief Executive Officer
BrandUSA
Lodging Analyst, Managing Director
UBS Investment Bank
James P. Evans is Chief Executive Officer of Brand USA,
formerly known as the Corporation for Travel Promotion.
Evans is an acknowledged leader in global hospitality
with 30 years of experience in domestic and international
sales and marketing. As President and CEO of Best
Western International, Evans and his team were
responsible for creating the highly successful advertising
campaign, “The World’s Largest.” During his career with Hyatt Hotels and Resorts,
Evans held several executive positions including Senior Vice President of Sales and
Marketing. While serving as CEO for Jenny Craig International, Evans built a
leadership team that was able to increase annual revenues from $120 million to
$500 million. His team also created the customer rewards program and hired
spokesperson Kirstie Alley. Most recently, Evans established Ardent Hotel Advisors
(AHA) in 2006, where he served as CEO and Co-Founder. Operating as a resort and
hotel management company, AHA was created to provide the best-in-class hotel
management services.
Robin Farley is a Managing Director in the Consumer
group at UBS Investment Bank. She specializes in the
Leisure, Cruise Line, Lodging and Gaming industries.
Farley has been the number one ranked Leisure Analyst
by Institutional Investor magazine for nine years, and is
also II-ranked in the Gaming and Lodging category. In
2005, Farley was ranked as one of the top 10 earnings
forecasters for any industry from the 3,000 Analysts surveyed by Starmine. Prior
to the UBS Investment Bank and its predecessor firm PaineWebber, Farley held
the same position at Deutsche Bank, BT Alex Brown, and Bankers Trust. Farley
holds an M.B.A. degree from Columbia University and a B.A. degree from
Princeton University. Cecelia L. Fanelli
Partner
Steptoe & Johnson LLP
Cecelia L. Fanelli has over 30 years of experience
practicing across the country in federal and state courts,
and in arbitration, mediation, and alternative dispute
resolution proceedings. She has also been chosen to
serve as an arbitrator in high stakes hotel industry
arbitrations by leading industry participants.
Fanelli represents hotel industry clients domestically and internationally, and they run the gamut from owners of hotels to lenders,
franchisees, franchisors and non-branded management companies. Fanelli has
successfully represented clients and obtained a number of multi-million dollar
recoveries in hotel industry litigations and complex real estate litigations and workouts. Fanelli has successfully defended lender clients against multi-million dollar
lender liability and antitrust claims and has tried a variety of trademark infringement injunction and damage claims on behalf of franchisors. She was counsel
for the prevailing lender in the landmark case of Government Guarantee Fund of
Republic of Finland v. Hyatt, which confirmed the right of owners to terminate
managing agencies.
Fanelli also has a robust transactional practice and is recognized as an expert on the negotiation and drafting of hotel management and license agreements.
Fanelli graduated summa cum laude from the University of Pennsylvania and from
Cornell Law School, where she was an Editor of the Cornell Law Review.
Warren Q. Fields
Principal and Chief Investment Officer
Pyramid Hotel Group
Warren Q. Fields is a senior executive with over two
decades of experience in all facets of hospitality
acquisitions, development, finance and operations. As
Chief Investment Officer and Founding Partner of PHG,
Fields has overseen the growth of PHG’s portfolio to
approximately 70 hotels for over 12 years. Fields is
responsible for all aspects of business development, via
acquisitions, third-party management and asset management contracts,
fundraising, and new investment opportunities.
Fields is the former Vice President of Development & Operations of Promus
Hotel Corporation, which was sold to Hilton Hotel Corporation in 1999. At Promus,
Fields formulated and implemented a strategy for creating a new hotel brand for
the company which eventually sized to 30 properties. Fields, a graduate of the Cornell University School of Hotel Administration, began his career with Beacon Hotel Corporation, a predecessor company to Promus,
where he served as Vice President of Development for Guest Quarters Hotels, and
later Doubletree. Fields returned to Boston in 1999 to form Pyramid Hotel Group.
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34 th ANNUAL NEW YORK UNIVERSITY
International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
Michael A. Fishbin
Jennifer Fox
Global & Americas Hospitality Leader
Ernst & Young, LLP
President
Fairmont Hotels & Resorts
Michael A. Fishbin is a member of Ernst & Young’s Global
Real Estate Advisory Board. Fishbin is an active advisor
to hospitality companies, developers, private equity
funds, lenders and governments in all aspects of the
hospitality, leisure and tourism industries. The hospitality
practice focuses on audit, tax, transactions, development,
valuations, operations and strategy.
Fishbin is a member of the Executive Planning Committee for the New York
University International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference and an adjunct
faculty to the Preston Robert Tisch Center for Hospitality, Tourism and Sports
Management. He is a member of the advisory board of Rock and Wrap it Up, a
non-profit organization that serves the sports, music education, government and
hotel industries in the fight to alleviate hunger around the world. Fishbin holds a
B.A. from Union College and received his Master’s degree from the School of Hotel
Administration at Cornell University.
Jennifer Fox is President of Fairmont Hotels & Resorts
and oversees the luxury brand’s global hotel portfolio.
With an extensive background in hotel operations,
branding and marketing, Fox is responsible for
operations, product and service strategy, global brand
development, human resources, owner relations and
development. Prior to joining Fairmont, Fox spent 10
years at InterContinental Hotels Group, most notably as Chief Operating Officer for
Continental Europe, and 13 years at Starwood/Sheraton where she held several
senior management positions. Over the course of her career, Fox has also
managed world-renowned hotels including the InterContinental Hong Kong and the
Orchid at Mauna Lani (now a Fairmont). Fox has worked in North America, Asia,
Europe and Australia during which time she has developed a global network of
luxury and industry related contacts, including strong connections in the media,
owner and investment communities. Fox holds a doctorate in Business Administration (DBA) from the International School of Management in Paris, France, and an
M.B.A. from Baylor University.
William B. Fortier
Senior Vice President, Development - Americas
Hilton Worldwide
William B. Fortier was named Senior Vice President,
Development - Americas in June 2008. He is responsible
for developing both the managed and franchised
businesses for all of Hilton’s brands in the region. Prior to
his current role, Fortier was Senior Vice President - Franchise Development of Hilton’s Brand Performance and
Development group, a position he held since 2001. In
that capacity, he was responsible for overseeing franchise development efforts for
Hilton Hotels Corporation’s brands in North America, including Hilton, Doubletree,
Embassy Suites Hotels, Hampton Inn, Hampton Inn & Suites, Hilton Garden Inn and
Homewood Suites by Hilton. These activities also included continuing the
expansion of the company’s network of hotels and ensuring the consistent delivery
of brand standards from a development standpoint.
Fortier joined Hilton in 1996 as Vice President of Franchise Development,
where he worked with owners to develop Hilton and Hilton Garden Inn franchised
hotels in the Western Region. Prior to Hilton, Fortier spent 10 years at Marriott
International where he was Vice President of Development. Fortier earned a Bachelor of Science in Hotel/Restaurant Management from the University of Houston’s
Conrad N. Hilton College of Hotel and Restaurant Management.
Geoffrey T. Freeman
Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer U.S. Travel Association
Geoffrey T. Freeman is Executive Vice President and Chief
Operating Officer for the U.S. Travel Association, the
nation’s leading voice for increasing travel to and within
the United States. He is responsible for driving the travel
industry’s response to the latest challenges and seeks to
position travel as a critical asset to the country, American
business, and the traveling public. Under his leadership,
the industry has enacted the Travel Promotion Act, referred to by Travel Weekly as
the “industry’s biggest legislative victory in a decade”; derailed an assault on
corporate meetings and events through the highly successful “Meetings Mean
Business” campaign; and begun the march to building an army of one million
employee activists via its burgeoning Power of Travel Coalition.
Freeman has led a variety of complex and successful issue campaigns during
his 15 years in Washington. Previously, Freeman was a Vice President with APCO
Worldwide, a global public affairs firm, where he led the highly visible Partnership
for Prescription Assistance (PPA). The PPA, supported by America’s pharmaceutical
companies, was the largest effort ever created to connect uninsured Americans
with free prescription medicines.
Previously, Freeman was the Director of Government Relations and Strategic
Outreach for Freddie Mac where he developed and implemented an innovative
program to highlight the corporation’s activities in local markets. Prior to joining
Freddie Mac, Freeman served as Director of Strategic Initiatives for the American
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Association of Health Plans, the leading representative of the managed care
industry. Freeman helped guide the media and strategic communications strategy
around several high-profile issues, including the Patients’ Bill of Rights and
Medicare reform. In an effort to build support for the industry beyond-the-beltway,
Freeman developed several unique initiatives, including a highly successful Hollywood outreach strategy and a partnership with physicians in the battle for medical
liability reform. Freeman is a graduate of the University of California, Berkeley.
Alan J. Fuerstman
media business intelligence solutions for thousands of hotels, restaurants, and
retail organizations.
Gambhir is a frequent lecturer at conferences and summits on topics relating
to social media in the hospitality industry. His expertise has provided Gambhir
opportunities to publish articles in publications such as Hotel Business Review, 1 to
1 Media and The CEO Refresher. He is a contributing Editor to HotelNewsNow.com,
Hotel Business Review Magazine, and HotelExecutive.com.
Gambhir holds a Master of Business Administration from the Johnson School
at Cornell University and a Bachelor of Science in Finance and Information Systems
with honors from the University of Maryland.
Founder and Chief Executive Officer
Montage Hotels & Resorts
Robert Gaymer-Jones
Alan J. Fuerstman is Chief Executive Officer of Montage
Hotels & Resorts, a company that he founded in 2002.
Montage operates Montage Laguna Beach, Montage
Beverly Hills, and Montage Deer Valley. In addition to its
flagship Montage Hotel and Resort portfolio, the
company also operates some of the country’s premier
golf courses, including The Prince course in Kauai;
Sandpiper Golf Club in Santa Barbara, California; and Porcupine Creek in Rancho
Mirage, California.
Prior to launching Montage, Fuerstman was the Vice President of Hotel
Operations at Bellagio. Previously, he served as President and Managing Director
of The Phoenician resort in Scottsdale, Arizona. He was also responsible for ITT
Sheraton’s Luxury Collection properties, St. Regis Aspen and St. Regis Houston,
and all ITT Sheraton properties in Arizona. He began his distinguished career with
Marriott International.
Fuerstman has been recognized with many industry accolades including:
“Resort Executive of the Year”, “Art to Life” award from Art & Living Magazine;
“One to Watch” from Virtuoso Life Magazine; and “Leaders in Luxury” award from
Luxury Travel Advisor. Fuerstman currently serves on the Board of Trustees for
Gettysburg College, the Northern Arizona University School of Hotel and Restaurant
Management Advisory Board, and the Resort Committee of the AH&LA. Fuerstman
graduated with a Bachelor of Arts from Gettysburg College in Pennsylvania.
Chief Executive Officer
Soluxury HMC – Sofitel Worldwide
Ashish K. Gambhir
Founder
newBrandAnalytics
Ashish K. Gambhir is Co-Founder of newBrandAnalytics
and currently leads the firm’s strategic marketing
initiatives. He collaborated with leaders in restaurant,
hotel and retail to develop the newBrandAnalytics suite
of cutting-edge products that use social media
feedback to obtain and analyze customer satisfaction
and competitive intelligence. Under his direction, the
firm has successfully launched market-validated and industry-specific social
Robert Gaymer-Jones joined Sofitel in 2007 after holding
a variety of senior operational positions, notably with
Marriott International. During four years, Gaymer-Jones
has had the responsibility of implementing the ambitious
plan to reposition Sofitel as a new global reference in
international luxury hotels. Including a complete restyling
of the brand and rationalizing of the network from 206 to
120 hotels including the launch of the two additional labels, Sofitel Legend and
Sofitel So.
The Sofitel team continues to develop the network and to increase the
brand equity through recognition and brand awareness while identifying key
locations for brand development. Gaymer-Jones has over 35 years of experience
in the luxury international hotel industry, having worked in over nine countries
and three continents.
Laurence Geller
President and Chief Executive Officer
Strategic Hotels & Resorts
Laurence Geller is President and Chief Executive Officer
of Strategic Hotels & Resorts. Prior to founding Strategic
Hotels & Resorts, Geller was Chairman and Chief
Executive Officer of Geller & Co., a gaming, tourism and
lodging advisory company he founded in 1989.
Previously, Geller held positions as Executive Vice
President and Chief Operating Officer of Hyatt Development Corporation, Senior Vice President of Holiday Inn and Director of London’s
Grand Metropolitan Hotels.
Geller is a former Vice Chairman of the Urban Land Institute’s Commercial
and Retail Council and is currently Co-Chairman of the Industry Real Estate Financing Advisory Council of the American Hotel and Lodging Association (IREFAC). Geller
serves on the Boards of Children’s Memorial Hospital and the James A. Graaskamp
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Due to space and sustainability, speaker bios have been
edited for brevity. Please consider the environment
before printing this document.
Center for Real Estate. He also serves on the President’s Council of the Midwest
Region of the U.S. Fund for UNICEF, and the National Leadership Council for the
American Jewish Committee. Geller is Chairman of The Churchill Centre and
Ambassador for North America for the U.K.-based Institute of Hospitality, of which
he is a Fellow (FIH).
Geller has over 45 years of experience in the lodging industry and has
authored over 50 published professional articles. A frequent lecturer at Universities
such as Cornell, New York University, Michigan State, Denver, DePaul, Roosevelt,
Johnson and Wales, Ecole Hoteliere, Lausanne; he has received numerous awards
for his service to the lodging industry and for his civic and philanthropic endeavors
including the American Hotel and Lodging Association’s Award for Outstanding
Contributions to Education, The C. Everett Johnson Award for Lodging Industry
Service, The IREFAC Award for Contributions to Lodging Real Estate and Financing,
The University of Wisconsin Real Estate Program’s Innovation Award, The Lodging
Hospitality Stephen W. Brener Silver Plate Award; The New York University Preston
Robert Tisch Award for Distinguished Industry Leadership, The Anti-Defamation
League Horatio Alger Award, The American Jewish Committee Centennial Human
Rights Medallion Award, and The Manfred Steinfeld Humanitarian Award. Geller
was also named one of Commercial Property Executive’s 2010 Executive of the
Year Runners Up in the Innovate, Invent category. Geller is a graduate of Ealing
Technical College’s School of Hotel Management and Catering.
Michael George
President and Chief Executive Officer
Crescent Hotels & Resorts
With over 30 years of hotel, resort & restaurant operating
experience, Michael George, as Founder, President &
Chief Executive Officer of Crescent Hotels & Resorts, is
responsible for operational, strategic, investment & fund
management oversight of the hospitality organization,
which specializes in management, acquisition and
development of hotels, resorts & conference centers.
Prior to Crescent Hotels & Resorts, George served as Senior Vice President
Operations for Destination Hotels & Resorts, a large operator of luxury independent
hotels, resorts and conference centers. Prior to Destination, George was a senior
officer for three top 20 national hotel management organizations: Hudson Hotels,
as President & Chief Operating Officer; Sunstone Hotels, as Chief Operating Officer;
and MeriStar Hotels, as Senior Vice President Operations.
Additionally, George has served as Managing Director and General Manager
for hotels with brand affiliations of Westin, Marriott, Sheraton, & Hilton Hotels, with
singular annual revenues ranging from $15m to over $70m, representing quality
designations of the Mobile Four-Star & AAA Four-Diamond awards. George currently serves on the Owners Advisory Board of Hilton Hotels, Starwood NA, Sheraton Hotels, and Marriott Residence Inns. George previously served on the Advisory
Boards for Westin, Marriott Food & Beverage, and Radisson. George has served on
the Board of Directors of publicly traded hotel companies along with involvement in
two initial public offerings and three secondary offerings.
Mark J. Gerstein
Managing Director, Real Estate, Lodging and Leisure Group
UBS Securities LLC
Mark J. Gerstein is a Managing Director in UBS
Investment Bank’s Real Estate, Lodging and Leisure
Group. Gerstein has been involved in the execution of
mergers, acquisitions, asset sales, IPOs, and debt &
equity transactions. His lodging deals include advising
Hilton Hotels Corp on its $26 billion sale to Blackstone,
CNL Hotels & Resorts on its $6.6 billion sale to Morgan
Stanley Real Estate and Ashford Hospitality, Fairmont on its $3.9 billion sale to
Kingdom Hotels and Colony Capital, Hilton Hotels Corp on its $5.7 billion
acquisition of Hilton Group’s lodging assets, Innkeepers USA Trust on its $1.5
billion sale to Apollo Investment Corporation, and Jin Jiang Hotels on its $307mm
acquisition of Interstate Hotels & Resorts with Thayer Lodging Group. Gerstein was
involved in $1.1 billion IPO of Hyatt Hotels Corporation and the $230 million IPO of
Banyan Tree Hotels & Resorts. Lastly, Gerstein has executed numerous financings
for Host Hotels & Resorts, Ashford Hospitality Trust and Sunstone Hotel Investors.
Gerstein graduated as a Palmer Scholar with an M.B.A. in Finance from the
Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and received a BEng in Civil
Engineering with Great Distinction from McGill University.
Phillip A. Gesue
Director of Global Real Estate Orient-Express Hotels
Phillip A. Gesue has a diverse background in real estate
development, acquisitions and finance. Over the past 16
years he has managed the acquisition and development
of over 7 million square feet of real estate projects
throughout the U.S. and internationally. Gesue is
currently Director of Global Real Estate for Orient Express
Hotels where he oversees the firm’s residential portfolio
and development activities. Prior to joining Orient Express, Gesue was Director of
Acquisitions and Development for Time Equities, Inc, a New York-based international real estate investor-developer.
Early in his career, Gesue was President and Founder of Biba Hotels where
he developed Hotel Biba, an award winning boutique hotel. Gesue also helped
develop over 2,000 high-rise residential properties across the United States for
Crescent Heights, Inc.
Gesue is a board member of New York’s Art Omi International Arts Center and
was co-creator of Showtel, one of the Southeast United States largest annual “installation” art exhibitions. Gesue is an active member of the Columbia University
Alumni Association.
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Wayne B. Goldberg
Richard Gomel
President and Chief Executive Officer
LQ Management L.L.C.
Partner and Managing Director
Junius Real Estate Partners
Wayne B. Goldberg is President and Chief Executive
Officer of LQ Management L.L.C., operator of La Quinta
Inns & Suites. With more than 33 years of lodging
experience, Goldberg was appointed to the position in
2006, after serving as the company’s Executive Vice
President of Operations. Prior to joining the company
in 2000, Goldberg was the Chief Operating Officer for
BridgeStreet Accommodations, one of the leading corporate housing providers
worldwide. Goldberg began his career at Red Roof Inns, Inc. where he held
several leadership roles including Group Vice President, District Vice President,
Regional Manager, Area Manager and General Manager. Goldberg holds a
Bachelor’s degree from the University of Louisville and is a foundation board
member for the Texas FFA.
Richard Gomel is a Partner of Junius Real Estate
Partners and serves on its Investment Committee and is
responsible for the investment and execution of the
strategy. Most recently, Gomel was a Managing
Director at Starwood Capital Group focusing on the
group’s hotel acquisitions efforts. Previously, Gomel
served as the Chief Executive Officer of Groupe du
Louvre, with over 800 hotels throughout Europe across various market
segments. Prior to this, Gomel worked for Starwood Hotels & Resorts holding
various positions including Senior Vice President overseeing the acquisitions and
development efforts of the W brand on a worldwide basis, Vice President of
Corporate Investments & Development and Assistant to the Chairman and Chief
Executive Officer, focusing on special projects of a strategic, transactional and
operational nature. Gomel has served on various boards including Groupe du
Louvre, Baccarat and Hersha Hospitality Management. Gomel holds a B.A. from
Cornell University and an M.B.A. from Harvard Business School.
Drew Goldman
Managing Director, Head of Real Estate Investment Banking Americas
Deutsche Bank Securities Inc.
Drew Goldman joined Deutsche Bank in 1999 in the
Gaming, Lodging and Leisure group. Prior to that, he
was with Sun International Hotels Limited where he was
responsible for Strategic Planning, Corporate Finance
and Investor Relations from 1997 to 1999. Before joining
Sun International, Goldman spent five years in
investment banking with Bear, Stearns & Co. Inc. and
Paribas Corporation. Goldman has focused on the Gaming and Leisure sectors for
20 years. He has worked in both banking and on the client side, gaining valuable
perspective from working with a former client. Goldman is a frequent speaker at
industry conferences and speaks on corporate finance matters relating to Real
Estate, Gaming, Lodging, and Leisure Companies.
Goldman received an M.A. in Economics from the Katholieke Universiteit
Leuven and a B.A. from Connecticut College.
Phillip Gordon
Partner, Co-head of Hotels and Leisure Practice Group
Perkins Coie LLP
Phillip Gordon focuses his practice in the areas of private
equity, hotel transactions and management agreements,
corporate mergers and acquisitions, and representation
of Boards of Directors of public companies. Over the
years, Gordon has supervised the acquisitions, financing
and management agreement negotiations of more than
75 hotels in North America and Europe. He has also
advised sponsors on establishing private equity funds and has represented
portfolio companies of the private equity funds. Gordon has handled numerous
public and private corporate acquisitions and dispositions and has advised Boards
of Directors and Committees of Boards of public companies on a range of topics.
Gordon is a frequent panelist at hotel industry seminars and has been recognized as a leader in the industry by various publications and organizations. Gordon
is a graduate of Oxford University and the University of Chicago Law School.
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Cindy Estis Green
Simon A. Hallgarten
Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer
Kalibri Labs, LLC
Partner
Northview Hotel Group
Cindy Estis Green’s career spans thirty-five years in
hospitality. Green served Hilton International as Head of
Corporate Marketing Information Systems and Research
and as a Hotel General Manager.
After starting up the data mining and marketing
analytics consultancy, Driving Revenue, and selling it to
Pegasus Solutions, Green spent ten years as Managing
Partner of The Estis Group providing strategic marketing consulting to hospitality
organizations.
Co-author of AH&LA’s 2012 Distribution Channel Analysis: A Guide for Hotels,
Green was named one of the top 25 greatest minds by HSMAI and inducted into
the Hospitality Technology Hall of Fame in recognition of her many contributions
to sales and marketing technology. A past-Chair and board member on the HSMAI
Foundation, Green is also a current member of the HITEC Advisory Council and the
HSMAI Resort Advisory Council.
Green has a B.S. from the School of Hotel Administration at Cornell University
and an M.B.A. in Marketing from The American University. She launched Kalibri
Labs in 2012 offering data analytics, data modelling and intelligence services to
the hospitality industry.
Simon A. Hallgarten is one of the founding partners of
Northview Hotel Group, and oversees all aspects of its
operations. Hallgarten also leads design and construction
for Northview Hotel Group, including all pre-development,
planning, contractor oversight, budget preparation, and
hands-on project management. Hallgarten has over 25
years of experience in hotel and residential operations,
feasibility, development, construction, and asset management work in the U.S.,
Europe and Australia.
Hallgarten began his career in Europe and Australia working as a Chef and
Hotel Manager before joining the London-based real estate feasibility groups at
KPMG and Deloitte (previously Deloitte and Touche). In 1993, Hallgarten joined
the development group at Westin Hotels & Resorts, based in Seattle, where he
remained as a VP of Development during the sale of the company to Starwood
Capital and Goldman, Sachs & Co.
Since 1997, Hallgarten has been involved with all aspects of hotel and
residential acquisitions, development, and asset management, working as a
consultant for The Bridgetown Group, The Alpha Group, and as West Coast Vice
President of Development for Hardin Capital. During this time, Hallgarten was
responsible for the successful acquisition, development, and asset management
of close to $500 million of hotel and residential assets in California, DC, Florida,
Colorado, and Mexico.
Hallgarten has been involved in numerous high-profile and successful lodging projects throughout his career, most notably: the acquisition, and development
of over $100 million of hotel assets in the San Francisco market with Hardin Capital; underwriting, acquisition, re-development, and development of $150 million
of hotel and resort assets for Sunstone Hotels & Resorts; the development of the
Westin Portland, the creation of the Westin200 concept, and the development/franchising/management structuring of high profile assets such as the Westin Whistler,
the Westin Grand Cayman, and the Westin St. John for Westin Hotels & Resorts.
Hallgarten has a B.A. Hons. from Bristol University (England), and a post graduate degree in Hotel Management from Manchester University’s Hollings Faculty.
Joseph Greff
Managing Director - Gaming and Lodging Equity Research
J.P. Morgan Securities
Joseph Greff is a Managing Director in the Equity
Research Department at J.P. Morgan, joining the firm
through the June 2008 merger with Bear Stearns. Greff
has been an Institutional Investor ranked analyst for the
past eight years covering the Gaming and Lodging
Sector, ranking #1 for the past 6 years. Greff also ranked
#1 in recent Greenwich Associates U.S. Equity Analysts
Polls for Hotels/Resorts, Gaming & Leisure Facilities. Greff has been recognized for
his stock picking in The Wall Street Journal’s Best on the Street 2007, 2006, and
2004 Surveys. Prior to joining Bear Stearns, Greff worked at Fulcrum Global
Partners, ABN AMRO and Prudential Securities. Greff received an M.B.A. in Finance
from New York University and a B.A. in Economics and Mathematics from
Muhlenberg College.
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John S. Hamilton
Senior Vice President, Acquisitions and Business Development
Pyramid Hotel Group
John S. Hamilton is responsible for Pyramid Hotel
Group’s new management assignments, acquisitions and
business development. In the past seven years, Hamilton
and his team have underwritten, financed, acquired and/
or taken over management of approximately 70 hotels
with over 30,000 rooms.
Hamilton has 27 years of experience sourcing,
evaluating, underwriting, and executing hospitality real estate and management
transactions. Previously a licensed C.P.A., he has been associated with such
prominent firms as Lowe Hospitality, Promus Hotels, Carnival Hotels & Resorts,
Doubletree Hotels, and Laventhol & Horwath, CPA’s.
Dan Hansen
President and Chief Executive Officer
Summit Hotel Properties, Inc.
Dan Hansen serves as President and Chief Executive
Officer of Summit Hotel Properties, Inc. Hansen led the
company through the transition from a privately held LLC
to a publicly traded REIT. Hansen was appointed
President of The Summit Group, Inc. and Chief Financial
Officer of Summit Hotel Properties, LLC in 2008. His
primary responsibilities included the development and
execution of growth strategies, raising equity capital and hotel development and
acquisition. In 2005, Hansen was appointed to the company’s board of managers
and promoted to Executive Vice President. In this capacity he was part of the team
that acquired over $140 million in hotel properties and led the development of over
$240 million of hotel assets.
Hoyt H. Harper II
Senior Vice President, Global Brand Management
Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc
Today, Harper is managing the $5 billion expansion of the Sheraton brand with a
development pipeline of over 100 new hotels and resorts. Prior to his current role,
Harper led the transformation of Four Points by Sheraton, now Starwood’s fastest
growing brand worldwide.
Harper has also served as Senior Vice President Business Development &
Marketing Programs, where he was responsible for developing Starwood Preferred
Guest, Starwood’s award winning loyalty program and SPG co-branded credit card
with American Express. Black Enterprise Magazine has named Harper one of the
most powerful African Americans in Corporate America. In 2006, Lodging Magazine named Harper as one of the lodging industry’s Top Innovators for the Year for
“mastering the alchemy of brand renewal” with the Four Points by Sheraton brand.
Charles Harris
Vice President, Marketing
Luxe Hotels
As the recently appointed Vice President of Marketing
for Luxe Hotels, including its global membership hotels
branded under Luxe Worldwide, Charles Harris applies
his diverse marketing and brand positioning expertise
to the company’s strategic partnerships and the
leadership of all corporate marketing engagement
campaigns. He is also responsible for the brand’s
digital campaigns, having focused heavily on SEO, SEM, social media and email
marketing throughout his career. In this role, Harris also oversees all public and
media relations activities.
In joining the Luxe Hotels team, Harris brings an extensive background in
business marketing with the likes of the Los Angeles Dodgers, the Walt Disney
Company and Anaheim’s Mighty Ducks, and past executive positions directing
corporate publicity and creating lucrative partnerships for widespread marketing
campaigns. As President and Founder of Israel-based Coast 2 Coast Communications, his leadership grew the company’s profit margin exponentially in five years.
Harris also served as Vice President of Strategic Marketing for the Internet business unit at Experian Consumer Direct, where his work earned a finalist position
for a Silver Anvil award.
Harris’ previous success in securing and retaining corporate alliances and
sponsorships, and representing distinctly individual brands and companies aligns
perfectly with the multi-faceted position at Luxe Hotels. A graduate of University
of California, Irvine, Harris is also an adjunct professor in the sport management
graduate program at California State University, Long Beach.
Hoyt H. Harper II is Senior Vice President, Brand
Management for Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide,
Inc. In this capacity, Harper is responsible for the
strategic direction for Sheraton Hotels & Resorts,
Starwood’s largest and most global brand. Harper’s
responsibilities include; marketing, guest experience
management, and product development. Most recently,
Harper successfully led the Sheraton brand’s global $6 billion revitalization effort.
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International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
Tim Hart
Kate B. Henriksen
Executive Vice President, Enterprise Services
TravelClick
Senior Vice President Investment and Portfolio Analysis
RLJ Lodging Trust
Tim Hart leads the enterprise services and solutions
division of TravelClick. In this role, Hart oversees the
development and delivery of enterprise level business
intelligence solutions and services to large hotel chains,
rental car companies, and other travel industry
stakeholders.
A veteran of the travel and hospitality industry, Hart
has been leading the innovation and technology behind the industry’s market intelligence, pricing and revenue management solutions. Prior to joining TravelClick,
Hart was a Co-Founder, Chief Executive Officer and President of Rubicon as well
as a member of its board of directors. He has more than 25 years experience in
consulting, designing and implementing advanced revenue management solutions
for the travel and hospitality industry.
Hart holds a Bachelor’s of Arts in Germanic Languages and Literature, and Master’s of Business Administration in Finance from Washington University in St. Louis.
Kate B. Henriksen, a veteran RLJ executive, is Senior
Vice President of Investment and Portfolio Analysis.
She is responsible for managing the underwriting
process on RLJ’s potential hotel investments and for
asset managing the portfolio on a strategic level. Prior
to RLJ going public, she also oversaw portfolio
management and her responsibilities included tracking
the performance of the company’s investment portfolios, and assisting with
capital raising efforts and managing relationships with investors in RLJ’s
investment funds. Henriksen also served as Vice President of Investment
Analysis, where she was primarily responsible for underwriting and due diligence
on potential hotel investments. Since joining RLJ, Henriksen has overseen the
underwriting on completed transactions totaling over $2.5 billion. Prior to joining
RLJ in 2002, Henriksen served as a Director of Development Planning and
Feasibility at Marriott International. Henriksen’s experience also includes consulting on and appraising over $4 billion in existing and proposed lodging facilities
for HVS International. Henriksen graduated from the Cornell University School of
Hotel Administration with a B.S. degree with a concentration in Real Estate and
Property Asset Management.
Robert C. Hazard
Vice President of Acquisitions and Development
Hersha Hospitality Trust
Robert C. Hazard is the Vice President of Acquisitions and
Development for Hersha Hospitality Trust. In that
capacity, he is responsible for sourcing and closing new
business opportunities. Since joining the company in
2005, Hazard has led the Closing team on over 35
individual acquisitions, overseen Hersha’s interest in the
development of five new hotels and is currently the
project executive on two ground-up developments.
Prior to joining Hersha, Hazard was the Chief Executive at MetroVision Community Development, an advisory firm specializing in assisting municipalities in the
development and management of its tourism infrastructure. There, Hazard played
a key role structuring and negotiating the business deals on several publicallyowned convention hotels including the Hilton Americas-Houston, the Sheraton
Myrtle Beach, the Renaissance Schaumburg and the Hyatt Regency Denver.
Hazard is the author of the “Qualified Hotel Management Agreement” template
that has been accepted by most of the major hotel brands and that conforms in all
respects to the U.S. Department of Treasury regulations regarding the engagement
of a hotel manager in a project funded with tax-exempt bond debt.
Hazard has also held senior development and acquisition positions at
Starwood Hotels & Resorts, Interstate Hotels and has over a decade of industry
consulting experience with top hospitality and tourism consulting firms including
Pannell Kerr Forster and Kenneth Leventhal & Company. Hazard holds a Bachelor
of Science in Marketing from Arizona State University.
Tyler Henritze
Managing Director
Blackstone Group
Tyler Henritze is a Managing Director in the Real Estate
Group and is based in New York. Since joining Blackstone
in 2004, Henritze has been involved in analyzing real
estate investments in all property types and has worked
on a variety of acquisitions including the Duke Realty
suburban office portfolio, Valad Property Group, the
Columbia Sussex hotel portfolio, the 2010 acquisition of
Extended Stay Hotels, Equity Office Properties, CarrAmerica, La Quinta and
Wyndham International. Currently Henritze focuses on new equity investment
opportunities in the hospitality sector.
Henritze also spent several years as an initial member of the Real Estate
Debt Strategies Group at Blackstone focusing on a variety of non-controlling debt
oriented real estate investments. Before joining Blackstone in 2004, Henritze
worked at Merrill Lynch, where he was an Analyst in the Real Estate Investment
Banking group and was involved in a variety of debt, equity and M&A transactions.
Henritze received a B.S. in Commerce from The McIntire School at the University of
Virginia where he graduated with distinction.
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International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
Charles S. Henry
Marc A. Hoffman
President
Hotel Capital Advisers, Inc.
Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer
Sunstone Hotel Investors
Charles S. Henry founded Hotel Capital Advisers (“HCA”),
in 1994 to manage the international hotel investment
activities of HRH Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal of Saudi
Arabia. Today HCA manages a portfolio of hotel real
estate and operating company investments for Prince
Alwaleed’s Kingdom Holding Co. with an equity value in
excess of $2 billion. Prominent assets in the portfolio
include the Plaza in New York, the Savoy Hotel in London, and the Four Seasons
George V in Paris. Hotel company investments include significant stakes in Four
Seasons Hotels, Fairmont Raffles Hotels International, and Movenpick Hotels.
Prior to founding HCA, Henry spent nine years in investment banking at CS
First Boston and Salomon Brothers, where he was responsible for capital raising, property sales, and merger and financial advisory assignments in the hotel
industry, including the sales of Regent International, Ramada, Holiday Inns, and
Motel 6. Earlier in his career, Henry spent two years on the financial management
faculty at Cornell University. Additionally, he worked at Prudential Insurance in
hotel asset management and at Hilton International in operations analysis. Henry
received a B.S. degree in Hotel Administration and an M.B.A. in Finance from
Cornell University.
Marc A. Hoffman is Executive Vice President and Chief
Operating Officer. He joined Sunstone Hotel Investors,
Inc., in 2006. Prior to joining Sunstone, Hoffman spent
nearly three decades in hotel operations with Marriott
Hotels & Resorts International, and The Ritz Carlton Hotel
Company. In his last position with Marriott Hotels &
Resorts International, as Vice President and Managing
Director of Grande Lakes Orlando, Hoffman’s keen operational and financial
management skills proved invaluable and resulted in Grande Lakes becoming one
of the most popular and financially successful properties in the chain. Hoffman
holds an Associate’s degree in Culinary Arts from the Culinary Institute of America,
as well as a Bachelor’s degree in Hospitality Management with a Minor in Finance
from Florida International University.
Jeff Higley
Editorial Director/Vice President
HotelNewsNow.com/STR
Jeff Higley is Vice President, Digital Media and Communications and Editorial Director at HotelNewsNow.com/
STR. Higley is a 25-year journalism veteran who has
specialized in the hotel industry for the past 15 years. He
launched HotelNewsNow.com, a division of Smith Travel
Research in September 2008. Prior to joining HotelNewsNow.com and Smith Travel Research in March 2008,
Higley served in various leadership positions for Questex Media Group’s hotel
group, including Hotel & Motel Management and Hotel Design magazines.
Higley began his career in the newspaper industry and worked as a sportswriter for several medium-sized Midwest newspapers, covering the gamut from
high school basketball to professional championship games.
Jeffrey A. Horwitz
Corporate Partner, Chair Lodging & Gaming Practice Group
Proskauer
Jeffrey A. Horwitz is a Partner in the Corporate
Department, and Chairs both the Private Equity Real
Estate practice and the internationally recognized
Lodging & Gaming Group. He has served as co-head of
Mergers & Acquisitions and as a member of the
Executive Committee. He is a general corporate and
securities lawyer with broad-based experience in
mergers and acquisitions, international transactions, corporate and real estate
finance, and strategic board counseling.
As head of the Lodging & Gaming Group, he has handled virtually every type of
matter, and has worked with virtually every major player, in the industry. His experience, both in and outside the U.S., extends to hotel and casino development and
construction; acquisitions, sales and restructurings; financings; management; marketing; reservations systems; litigation counseling and strategic planning; and ancillary
services. This breadth of work is key to executing complex and sophisticated transactions, including more than $2.5 billion in completed transactions in the past year.
As a frequent lecturer in the hospitality industry, he regularly speaks about
hotel management agreements at Cornell and NYU, as well as at lodging investment conferences around the world, including the NYU International Hospitality
Industry Investment Conference in New York, Americas Lodging Investment Summit in Los Angeles, the International Hotel Investment Forum in Berlin and the Hotel
Investment Conference Asia-Pacific in Hong Kong.
Horwitz is a member of the Advisory Board of the Cornell Center for Hospitality Research and has served as a member of the Editorial Board of the Cornell
Hotel and Restaurant Administration Quarterly. He is a director of The New York
Hospitality Council, Inc., a not-for-profit forum for hospitality industry leaders.
He is regularly rated in Best Lawyers, Chambers and other rankings.
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Ted Hunter
Thomas S. Ito
Senior Vice President, Development Planning and Construction
Wyndham Worldwide
Principal
Gensler
Ted Hunter is an architect and experienced real estate
developer who brings over 28 years of hospitality
planning, programming, design, development and project
management experience for a range of hotel, resort and
vacation ownership market tiers.
Hunter is Senior Vice President, Development Planning and Construction (DPC) for Wyndham Worldwide,
one of the world’s largest hospitality companies, with more than 55 brands, which
include Wyndham Hotels and Resorts, TRYP by Wyndham, Hawthorn Suites by
Wyndham, Ramada, Days Inn, Super 8, and Wyndham Vacation Resorts timeshare.
The Wyndham DPC organization consists of an integrated team of development,
design, project and construction management experts. Hunter is responsible
for business development and for creating development tools and resources to
support recently acquired or licensed hotel brands such as TRYP by Wyndham
and Planet Hollywood Hotels. Hunter coordinates hotel brand design and project
management services in the U.S. as well overseas with teams in London and Hong
Kong developing hotels in EMEA, LATAM and APAC markets.
Hunter has been with Wyndham since 1999 and previously served as Director of Entertainment and Hospitality Services for the Sverdrup Corporation from
1993 to 1999, and as Principal, Studio Director for Fugleberg Koch Architects from
1984 to 1993.
Thomas S. Ito launched Gensler’s hospitality practice in
the late 1990s when he led a comprehensive renovation
of the Beverly Hills Hotel and has developed it to an
international scale. Ito’s well-rounded experience – designer, project architect, project manager – gives him a
comprehensive understanding of complex hospitality
projects and insight for all phases of development. He
excels at translating client vision into something unique, successful and most
importantly, real.
Ito’s goals are great design, innovation and strong client service. Clients
and staff alike respect him for his broad range of experience and in-depth
knowledge of all aspects of project delivery. He brings a high level of understanding and expertise to projects including building design, renovation, master
planning and interiors.
Since joining Gensler in 1983, Ito has been responsible for a number of complex hotel projects including the renovation of the Beverly Hills Hotel, the Regent
Beverly Wilshire, The Beverly Hilton, and The Ritz-Carlton Hotel and Residences
and JW Marriott at L.A. LIVE. Ito was an integral member of the leadership team for
MGM MIRAGE’s CityCenter development, a 20-million-square-foot city within a city
on the Las Vegas Strip. Currently, he’s working on the Westin Hotel at the Denver
International Airport and the KAL Hyatt Regency Hotel in Incheon, Korea.
Juliette Imhof
Tina Jain
Development Analyst
Ace Hotel Group
Social Media Marketing Coordinator
National Hockey League (NHL)
Juliette Imhof graduated from the Preston Robert Tisch Center for Hospitality,
Tourism, and Sports Management with a B.S. in Hotel and Tourism Management.
While pursuing her degree, she interned at Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group, became
President of the Hospitality Business Society and earned the Jonathan Tisch Academic Achievement award. Upon graduation, Imhof joined Goldman Sachs as an
analyst in Bank Loan Operations. In her second year with the Firm, she accepted
an assignment in Asia, spending eight months in Hong Kong and India working
with the Special Situations Investing Group. In 2011, Imhof returned to New York to
spearhead global initiatives and was promoted to Associate. As of January 2012,
Imhof has rejoined the hospitality industry as an integral member of Ace Hotel
Group’s Development team. Working directly with the chief officers of the company, Imhof is currently responsible for the operational underwriting and analysis
of all development opportunities for the brand. She is in her fourth year as a board
member of the NYU Tisch Center Alumni Society.
Tina Jain is the Social Media Marketing Coordinator for
the National Hockey League. While Jain has only been
with the National Hockey League since September of
2011, her career has included (and expanded to) many
roles within social media, including community manager
and business development.
Jain earned her B.S. in Hotel and Tourism Management from New York University Preston Robert Tisch Center for Hospitality, Tourism,
and Sports Management.
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Nancy Johnson
Executive Vice President, Development
Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group
As Executive Vice President, Select Service Development, Americas, Nancy Johnson oversees business
development efforts for Carlson Hotels’ select service
hotel brands in the Americas including Country Inns &
Suites By Carlson and Park Inn by Radisson. In addition
to her many years of leadership in development for
Carlson Hotels, Johnson previously led Franchise
Operations for full-service hotels and has served as Executive Vice President and
Brand Leader for the company’s select service brands. Before joining Carlson,
Johnson was Vice President and Chief Operating Officer at Hospitality Development Corporation, and was employed with Brutger Companies, Inc., where she
held various leadership positions.
Johnson serves on the board of directors for The Travel Partnership Corporation (TTPC) and was recently inducted as Chair of the American Hotel & Lodging
Association (AH&LA) Board of Directors for 2012. She is the Founding Chair of the
Women in Lodging Council for the AH&LA. Johnson also serves on the Board of Directors of the International Hotel and Restaurant Association and has been named
one of the 200 Most Powerful Women in Travel by Travel Agent magazine.
In 2002, Johnson received a Carlson Fellows Award for individual sales
achievement. The Carlson Fellows Award represents the company’s highest
career achievement honor and is presented to employees who best exemplify the
qualities of leadership, creativity and dedication and who are considered to be true
builders of the company.
Johnson attended St. Cloud State University majoring in Business Marketing
and St. Benedict College where she studied Business Management. She became
a Certified Hotel Administrator in 1985 and received her Minnesota Real Estate
License in 1988.
Naveen P. Kakarla
President and Chief Executive Officer
Hersha Hospitality Management
Naveen P. Kakarla is the President and Chief Executive
Officer and serves on the Board of Directors for Hersha
Hospitality Management (HHM), which manages over 80
hotels in the Northeast, Florida, Georgia, Arizona and
California. Kakarla is responsible for HHM’s investment
and fund management, acquisitions and development,
accounting, human resources, along with brand and
owner relations. Kakarla previously led the New York City region for HHM and also
oversaw its construction and technical services division. Prior to joining Hersha in
2005, Kakarla worked with a private equity firm and its portfolio companies on
early stage investments and “roll ups” in various industries. Kakarla had been an
active real estate investor in the multifamily space prior to joining Hersha.
Outside the real estate sector, Kakarla was previously a partner specializing
in corporate and securities law at the national law firm of Jenkens & Gilchrist,
P.C., and was previously associated with Akin, Gump, Strauss, Hauer Feld, LLP in
Washington DC. Kakarla earned a Bachelor of Arts from Austin College and a law
degree from Cornell Law School.
Christian Karaoglanian
Chief Development Officer
Accor Hotels Worldwide
Christian Karaoglanian joined the Accor group in 1976
and the hotel side of the company in 1984 to take on
the responsibility for development in the Middle East
and Asia and later the development of all brands in
Europe. Karaoglanian is now Chief Development Officer
for Accor Hotels Worldwide implementing the development policy of the company with a team of 140
developers on five continents through organic growth as well as acquisitions.
Karaoglanian is a member of the Accor Worldwide Management Committee, the
Accor Investment Committee as well as member of the board of various JV and
listed hotel companies such as Orbis in Poland, Risma in Morocco and Adagio in
Europe. Karaoglanian, a French citizen born in Paris, completed his University
education at the Institute d’Etudes Politiques de Paris (IEP) and holds a degree in
Economic Science.
Sandra Y. Kellman
Global Co-chair, Hospitality and Leisure Sector
DLA Piper LLP (US)
Sandra Y. Kellman concentrates her practice on all
aspects of complex commercial real estate development
and finance, with particular focus on acquisition,
disposition, development, management and financing of
hotels and mixed use projects, representing owners and
brands in single property and complex multi-state
portfolio transactions. Kellman works on projects
throughout the United States and abroad, including projects in the Middle East and
Central America. She is a member of the International Society of Hospitality
Consultants.
Kellman has been recognized by Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers
for Business, which speaks of her “dynamic practice” and praises her as “practical, pragmatic and effective.” She has been named an Illinois Super Lawyer in
Real Estate, as the result of research projects conducted jointly by Law & Politics
and Chicago magazines. She has also been selected as one of Real Estate Forum’s
Women of Influence.
Kellman writes and speaks frequently on various real estate development
topics. She co-chairs the firm’s Global Real Estate Summit. She was on the plan-
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ning committee and a guest speaker at the 2001 and 2000 UCLA Hotel Industry
Investment Conferences. Kellman has also been a guest speaker and panel moderator for several years at the New York University International Hospitality Industry
Investment Conference and the Lodging Conference in Phoenix, Arizona.
Brian J. King
Jonathan C. Kim
Brian J. King is Senior Vice President Brand Management
& Portfolio Programs for Marriott International, Inc. King
has overall responsibility for brand positioning, long
range strategic brand planning and product development
globally for the Courtyard, Fairfield Inn & Suites,
Residence Inn, SpringHill Suites, Marriott Executive
Apartments and TownePlace Suites brands.
King joined Marriott International in 1993 and has multiple positions including roles in brand management, revenue management, reservations, regional operations and sales. Prior to his current role, he served as Vice President & Global
Brand Manager for Courtyard by Marriott. In this capacity he led the development
of new product offerings, an award winning new lobby design, enhanced service
programs and communications strategy for the brand.
Prior to joining Marriott, King led operations management for the Six Flags
Corporation specializing in attractions. He also held multiple positions with Allen &
O’Hara, LLC’s hospitality management division.
Senior Acquisitions Analyst
Hersha Hospitality Trust
As a Senior Analyst on the Acquisitions team, Jonathan
C. Kim is responsible for assisting with the execution of
all hotel acquisition and development opportunities for
Hersha Hospitality Trust, a self-advised Real Estate
Investment Trust (REIT). Previously, Kim consulted and
appraised in excess of $500M in hospitality real estate
for HVS International based in New York. Kim conducted
feasibility analysis, market studies, acquisition due diligence, and the valuation of
hotel, motel, resort, and mixed-use developments for institutional, corporate
banking and individual client. Prior to HVS, Kim was a Development Intern at
Jumeirah Group in New York. Kim received a B.S. degree in Hotel and Tourism
Management with a concentration in Lodging Development from New York
University Preston Robert Tisch Center for Hospitality, Tourism, and Sports
Management. Kim is currently the Treasurer of the NYU Tisch Center Alumni
Society and a Steering Committee Member of NYU’s Young Alumni Leadership
Circle (YALC).
Kirk Kinsell
President, the Americas
IHG (InterContinental Hotels Group)
A member of the IHG Board and Executive Committee,
Kirk Kinsell is President of IHG (InterContinental Hotels
Group) PLC, Americas region and reports directly to Chief
Executive Officer, Richard Solomons. Kinsell is
responsible for the management, growth, and profitability
of the company’s largest operating region, spanning the
United States, Canada, Mexico, Central and South
America and the Caribbean. He is responsible for a portfolio of more than 3,500
hotels and resorts under the InterContinental Hotels & Resorts, Hotel Indigo,
Crowne Plaza Hotels & Resorts, Holiday Inn Hotels and Resorts, Holiday Inn
Express, Staybridge Suites and Candlewood Suites brands.
He was previously President, Europe, Middle East & Africa (EMEA), from
September 2007 to June 2011. Kinsell has 16 years experience operating in senior
positions across the IHG business.
Kinsell holds a Master’s degree in Professional Studies from the School of
Hotel Administration, Cornell University, and a Bachelor’s degree in Economics
from the University of California, San Diego. Additionally, he completed the Senior
Executive Program at the London Business School.
Senior Vice President - Global Brand Management
Marriott International, Inc.
Shaun Kirby
Senior Vice President of Operations
Crestline Hotels and Resorts
Shaun Kirby is a Senior Vice President of Operations for
Crestline Hotels & Resorts, Inc., and is responsible for
providing the leadership to the hospitality management
operational team in each of his assigned hotels in the
Mid-Atlantic and Northeast.
Kirby has held similar hospitality management
positions with Archon/Broadway Hospitality, Valley Forge
Investments and Bristol Hotels & Resorts. His on-property hospitality management
experience includes the positions of General Manager and Director of Sales & Marketing, as well as extensive food and beverage experience in catering, banquets,
restaurants, and work as an executive chef. Kirby holds a Bachelor of Science in
Finance from the Cornell School of Hotel Administration and is a graduate of the
Culinary Institute of America, Hyde Park, New York.
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Rick S. Kirkbride
Chair/Resort, Restaurant & Recreation Practice Group
Paul Hastings LLP Rick S. Kirkbride represents real estate development
companies, institutional lenders, investment banks,
opportunity funds and other capital providers, owners
and operators. His practice encompasses the development, acquisition and sale, finance, leasing, operation,
licensing, roll-up, foreclosure, workout and restructuring
of hotels, condo-hotels, resorts, branded condominiums,
private residence clubs and timeshare projects, spas, restaurants, casinos, golf
courses, tennis stadiums, theme parks, and other hospitality based entertainment
properties and businesses in North America, Latin America, the Caribbean, Europe,
Asia and the Middle East.
Kirkbride speaks on various hospitality topics at seminars and conferences
throughout the world. He is Founder and Chair of UCLA Extension and UCLA
Richard S. Ziman Center for the Real Estate Conference and has been an instructor
for UCLA Extension on Hospitality Law. He is a member of ULI and is Vice President
at Large of its Hotel Development Council; and is a member of the International
Society of Hospitality Consultants. He has been repeatedly named one of only
three lawyers within “Band 1” of the list of “Leaders in their Field” for the Leisure
& Hospitality (National) category in Chambers USA, and has also been repeatedly
named by the Los Angeles and San Francisco Daily Journals as one of the Top 100
Lawyers in the State of California.
David Kong
President and Chief Executive Officer
Best Western International, Inc.
David Kong is a hospitality industry leader and innovator
with a distinguished 40-year career. Since 2004, he has
served as President and Chief Executive Officer of Best
Western International, Inc. where he has enhanced the
brand’s image through a focus on customer care and by
launching the Best Western Plus and Best Western
Premier descriptors worldwide.
Under Kong’s leadership, Best Western has achieved a number of notable
industry firsts: the first to offer free high-speed internet access at all of its North
American properties; first to launch virtual tours of each North American hotel on
the brand’s website; first to offer electronic gift cards redeemable in various currencies and for free nights; and first to initiate strategic and exclusive partnerships
with NASCAR and Harley-Davidson.
Kong’s strong background in international development has helped make
Best Western one of the largest, fastest-growing and most respected international
hotel brands in Asia, leading to recognition in 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010 by TTG
Asia as the best midscale hotel chain. Kong was the 2010 Chairman of AH&LA. He
also is a member of the United States Travel and Tourism Advisory Board. He is a
recent recipient of the 2011 AH&LA Lawson A. Odde Award, the 2010 J. Patrick
Leahy Lifetime Achievement Award presented by the Illinois H&LA, and AAHOA’s
2010 Award of Excellence.
Kong completed the Executive Development Program at the Kellogg Graduate School of Management from Northwestern University and has a Bachelor’s
degree in Business Administration in Travel Industry Management from the
University of Hawaii.
Alex Kyriakidis
President and Managing Director, Middle East & Africa
Marriott International, Inc.
Alex Kyriakidis is President and Managing Director,
Middle East & Africa, for Marriott International, Inc., with
responsibility for all business activities for the Middle
East & Africa Region (MEA), including operations, sales
and marketing, finance and hotel development.
Prior to joining Marriott in January 2012, Kyriakidis
served as Global Managing Director – Travel, Hospitality
& Leisure for Deloitte LLP. In this role, Kyriakidis led the Global Travel, Hospitality &
Leisure Industry team, where he was responsible for a team of 4,500 professionals
that generated $700 million in revenues.
Kyriakidis has 38 years of experience providing strategic, financial, M&A, operational, asset management and integration services to the travel, hospitality and
leisure sectors. He has served clients in 25 countries, predominantly in the EMEA
and Asia/Pac regions. He is a fellow of the Arab Society of Certified Accountants,
the British Association of Hotel Accountants and the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales. Kyriakidis holds a Bachelor of Science in Computer
Science and Mathematics from Leeds University in the United Kingdom.
Jefferson Lam
Director of Capital Projects
Loews Hotels
Jefferson Lam oversees the planning and execution of all
owned hotel capital/FF&E projects. He reports to Dick
Senechal, Senior Vice President, Facilities. Lam, who
joined Loews Hotels as Senior Project Manager in 2004,
has spent his career leading successful design projects,
including the 2009 renovation of Loews Miami Beach
Hotel, encompassing guestroom refreshments and a
dramatic lobby with a new porte-cochere entrance.
Prior to joining Loews Hotels, Lam served as job captain at architectural
firms Silver and Ziskind Associates and Urbahn Associates. At Tony Chi & Associates, a New York hospitality design firm, he served as Designer/Project Manager
and worked with an international client base including Hyatt International, the
Mandarin Hotel and Hilton Hotels. Lam received his Bachelor of Architecture from
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.
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Due to space and sustainability, speaker bios have been
edited for brevity. Please consider the environment
before printing this document.
Guy Langford
Eric B. Lewis
Principal
Deloitte & Touche LLP
Executive Managing Director
Cushman & Wakefield, Equity, Debt & Structured Finance
Guy Langford is an Accounting Principal in the Deloitte
M&A Transaction Services practice with over 22 years of
public accounting experience. Based in New York,
Langford is Deloitte’s National Leader of Distressed Asset
and Debt Services which includes service offerings to
investors, lenders and debtors. Langford is also Deloitte’s
National M&A Real Estate Leader and has worked on
some of the largest and most complex real estate and hospitality transactions in
recent years including both domestic and cross border transactions in the public
and non-public arenas.
Langford has extensive experience in advising both financial sponsors and
corporate buyers on due diligence, accounting structuring matters, financial and
operating aspects of transactions. He also works closely with many real estate and
hospitality participants on post-transaction activities, including integration efforts
to ensure maximum transaction value is secured.
Langford has worked with a number of prominent real estate and hospitality
investors including Apollo Real Estate Advisors, Blackstone Real Estate Partners,
Lazard Real Estate Investors, Marriott International, Starwood Capital and Rockwood Capital Corporation.
Originally from Australia where Langford received his Bachelor of Commerce
at the University of Melbourne, he is both a Chartered Accountant (Australia) and a
licensed CPA (USA).
Eric B. Lewis, MAI, FRICS, is an Executive Managing
Director and Americas Practice Leader of the Valuation &
Advisory Hospitality & Gaming group with Cushman &
Wakefield, Inc. Lewis oversees a team of more than 20
senior valuation professionals dedicated to the
hospitality industry. In 2011, Lewis’s group was
responsible for appraising over 1,350 properties valued
at more than $42 billion, involving virtually every hospitality property type. Work
scope includes appraisals, feasibility studies, market surveys, litigation support,
and investment analysis.
Lewis, a Designated Member of the Appraisal Institute (MAI) is a board
member of the Metropolitan New York Chapter of the Appraisal Institute, as well as
a Fellow of the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (FRICS). He has dedicated
himself to the hospitality field for more than 15 years, having completed appraisal,
advisory, and consulting assignments on all hospitality property types across the
United States, Canada, and the Caribbean. Lewis is also a sought-after expert
witness in hospitality-related, litigation support cases.
Lewis has authored numerous industry-related articles, has been invited to
speak before the Real Estate Lender’s Association, the Mortgage Bankers’ Association, among others, and has lectured at New York University. Lewis holds a Master
of Science in Real Estate Valuation and Analysis from New York University and a
Cum Laude Bachelor of Science in Accounting from Lehigh University.
Benjamin Thomas Leahy
Steven L. Lichtenfeld
Managing Director – Head of Lodging Investment Banking
Goldman, Sachs & Co.
Partner, Co-Chair Real Estate Finance & Real Estate
Capital Markets Group
Proskauer
Benjamin Leahy is Head of the Lodging Group in the
Investment Banking Division at Goldman, Sachs & Co. He
is active in strategic advisory transactions and capital
raising efforts for companies in the lodging, ski and golf
sectors. Leahy joined Goldman Sachs in 2006 and was
named Managing Director in 2008. Prior to joining the
firm, he was a Principal at Banc of America Securities in
the Real Estate Investment Banking Group. Leahy also previously worked as a
Consultant for Wharton Econometric Forecasting Associates. Selected recent
transactions that Leahy has worked on for clients include sole book manager on
Hyatt Hotels’ initial public offering, advising CrossHarbor Capital on the acquisition
of the Yellowstone Club, and advising CSX Corporation on the disposition of The
Greenbrier. Leahy earned a B.A. in History from Georgetown University.
Steven L. Lichtenfeld is a Partner and co-head of the
Real Estate Finance and Real Estate Capital Markets
Groups, and a member of the Lodging & Gaming Practice
Group. He regularly advises financial institutions,
investment banking firms, real estate funds, institutional
lenders, specialty lenders, hedge funds, REITs and
pension advisors regarding public offerings and private
placements of real estate equity and debt securities, real estate mergers and
acquisitions, real estate senior and mezzanine financings and other corporate,
partnership and limited liability company matters.
Although Lichtenfeld has been widely recognized as a driving force in the
real estate capital markets and finance space during the past quarter-century, he
recently garnered several prestigious accolades in this area, including inclusion as
one of the Best Lawyers in America for 2012 in the area of real estate and for the
past five years has received coveted “Second Tier” and “Third Tier” rankings from
Chambers USA, which has described him as “a strong advocate who will leave
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International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
no stone unturned.” In the 2008 edition of Chambers, based on commentary to
its editors from clients, Lichtenfeld was “lauded for his hard working and detailed
approach” in handling a broad spectrum of public and private debt offerings,
securities, M&A and other corporate real estate matters.
Lichtenfeld is a prolific author and speaker, having penned numerous articles
and lectured before dozens of organizations throughout the country on various real
estate capital markets and finance topics.
Anne R. Lloyd-Jones
Managing Director
HVS
Anne R. Lloyd-Jones, CRE is Managing Director of the
New York office of HVS, the premier global hospitality
consulting firm. Since 1980, HVS has provided various
consulting services for over 20,000 hotels worldwide.
HVS operates out of over 25 offices in twelve countries.
Since joining HVS in 1982, Lloyd-Jones has provided
consulting and appraisal services to over 5,000 hotels.
She is responsible for the sale, supervision, and administration of over 200
appraisal and consulting assignments annually. Lloyd-Jones’ particular areas of
expertise include market studies, feasibility analysis, and appraisals. She is also an
expert in the field of the valuation of management companies, franchise
companies and brands; the negotiation and valuation of management contracts;
spas; and conference centers. She has appeared as an expert witness on
numerous occasions, providing testimony and litigation support on matters
involving bankruptcy proceedings, civil litigation, and arbitration.
Lloyd-Jones holds the CRE designation from the Counselors of Real Estate.
She is a member of the Board of Trustees of the Pelham Public Library and serves
on the Vestry at Christ Church in Pelham Manor, NY. Lloyd-Jones received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Swarthmore College and a Master of Professional Studies
from the School of Hotel Administration at Cornell University.
Mark V. Lomanno
Executive Board Member
newBrandAnalytics
Mark V. Lomanno is an Executive Board Member at
newBrandAnalytics. In that role he not only serves on the
company’s Board of Directors but also has taken an
active role in the management of the company. In that
capacity, Lomanno will help shape the company’s
strategic direction, creating and enhancing new
customer satisfaction research solutions and building
relationships with hospitality brands, owners and operators.
Lomanno is the former President and Chief Executive Officer of Smith
Travel Research (STR), the hotel industry’s global authority on current trends
in supply, demand, occupancy and room rates. Under Lomanno’s 15 years of
leadership, the company grew from a U.S. firm to the most respected name in
global hotel benchmarking. Prior to leaving STR, Lomanno co-authored “Distribution Channel Analysis: A Guide for Hotels”, the definitive study on the lodging
industry’s on-line environment.
Lomanno serves on the advisory board of the Center for Hospitality Research
at Cornell University and the University of Delaware’s school of Hotel, Restaurant
and Institutional Management, is an active member in the Hotel Development
Council of the Urban Land Institute and is a named Conti Professor at Pennsylvania State University. Because of his in-depth understanding and knowledge of
current industry issues, Lomanno is asked to give numerous speeches at industry
conferences, industry seminars and company meetings throughout the year. He is
also a frequent lecturer at the School of Hotel Administration at Cornell University.
Lomanno has published numerous articles in industry publications across the
major news outlets.
Joseph D. Long
Chief Investment Officer and Executive Vice President, Development
Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants
Joseph Long is Chief Investment Officer and Executive
Vice President Development for Kimpton Hotels &
Restaurants. In this role, he is responsible for directing
and coordinating property acquisitions, real estate
development, management contracts, interior design and
project management. This includes overseeing the
acquisition activity for Kimpton’s proprietary private
equity fund as well as its extensive third party management business. In addition,
he is part of the Senior Executive Committee at Kimpton that oversees day-to-day
management of all company operations.
Prior to joining Kimpton and from 1996-2003, Long served as Senior Vice
President, Acquisition and Development for Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide
where he was responsible for overseeing all growth activities including acquisitions, management contracts and joint venture negotiations in North America.
He was the senior most member of the development team responsible for North
American development and oversaw a department of over ten development executives. Long was previously Vice President with LaSalle Partners, a premier real estate advisory firm from 1993 to 1996. In this capacity, he had oversight responsibility for acquisitions and asset management of the company’s hotel properties on
behalf of its institutional clients. In addition, he was one of the founding executives
within LaSalle of the LaSalle Hotel Group which subsequently went public and is
now a multi-billion dollar publically traded REIT.
From 1985 to 1993, Long worked at Metric Realty, one of the largest U.S.
hotel owners during the 1980s. He began with the company as a Financial Analyst
and in 1987 was named Vice President, Portfolio Manager where he was responsible for the review and approval of all budgets, negotiation of joint ventures, debt
and workout negotiations and property dispositions for a variety of funds. Prior to
joining Metric Realty, Long was a management consultant with Laventhol and Horwath. Long is a graduate of the School of Hotel Administration at Cornell University.
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Vito F. Lotta
Senior Director of Design
Hilton Worldwide
Vito F. Lotta joined Hilton Worldwide in August 2009 as
Senior Director of Design - DoubleTree by Hilton - Global
Design Services. In this capacity, Lotta directs the
design, review and approval of hotel architecture and
interiors for DoubleTree by Hilton and as well as other
Hilton Branded new construction projects. Lotta has
recently completed development of the Hilton Lobby
Design Narrative and the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Design Narrative. Previously
with Gensler since 2000, Lotta led the hospitality practice for the north-central
region. Lotta led design and managed teams for Gettys since 1996 and Anderson
Mikos Architects since 1990. Lotta is a Licensed Architect and Registered Interior
Designer with the State of Illinois holding a B.Arch. from the University of Illinois
Chicago and LEED AP since 2006.
Flo Lugli
Executive Vice President, Marketing
Wyndham Hotel Group
Flo Lugli, Executive Vice President of Marketing,
oversees distribution, ecommerce, brand marketing,
and loyalty and research initiatives for Wyndham Hotel
Group and its 7,190 plus hotel portfolio. In addition, she
is also responsible for leading the company’s global
strategic direction for customer engagement and
market positioning. A nationally recognized expert with
a proven track record of driving revenue, she joined the Wyndham Hotel Group in
July 2009 after serving more than 20 years with Travelport Limited. Most
recently, Lugli served Travelport as Senior Vice President of commercial in its
Global Distribution Services Division and, prior to that, as acting Chief Marketing
Officer. During that time she was responsible for leading the company’s GDS
business in the Americas and overseeing Travelport’s Global Operations and
Global Land and Sea businesses, including the development and execution of its
hotel, car rental and leisure strategies.
Lugli also spent six years leading the company’s Airline Solutions business
unit, holding titles including Senior Vice President of Airline Solutions and President
and Managing Director, Airline Solutions. In those roles, she was responsible
for the development and delivery of business and technology solutions for the
company’s airline suppliers, with a specific focus on reservations hosting, faring
and data solutions. Prior to 2002, Lugli held executive level business development
and operations positions with Wizcom International and then Galileo International,
which was acquired by Travelport’s predecessor, the former Cendant Corporation,
in 2001. She joined Cendant in 1987 as a part of its Hospitality Division, serving in
several sales and marketing roles, including Vice President of Worldwide Sales and
Vice President of Worldwide Sales and Marketing.
Lugli has been voted one of the Most Powerful Women in Travel seven times
by Travel Agent Magazine and has been named a top 10 technology expert and
a top 75 hotel executive by Lodging Magazine. She has served two terms as
president of the Hotel Electronic Distribution Network Association (HEDNA), and is
currently a member of Northern Arizona University Hotel and Restaurant Management advisory board and the HSMAI Americas board of directors. Lugli also serves
on the board of directors for Joe’s House, a nonprofit organization providing a
nationwide online service that helps cancer patients and their families find lodging
near treatment centers.
Mark A. Lunt
Principal, Real Estate and Hospitality
Ernst & Young LLP
Mark A. Lunt brings over 20 years of experience in the
hospitality industry to Ernst & Young and is an active
advisor to developers, owners, operators, private equity
funds, lenders and governments in all aspects of the
hospitality, leisure and tourism industries. This
experience includes market analysis, restructuring,
litigation support, operator selection, financial analysis,
valuation, operational diagnostics, strategic planning, and transaction due
diligence. Lunt leads E&Y’s efforts in providing hospitality and real estate advisory
services for the U.S. Southeast Area, Caribbean and Latin American region. Major
recent engagements included a detailed restructure analysis of regional demand
characteristics to advise the lender on go-forward alternatives on major components of a large mixed-use resort, market & financial due diligence for a note
acquisition secured by a luxury hotel and condominium, as well as providing
advisory services for lenders regarding distressed hotel portfolios and single hotel
assets, including the evaluation of management and operating platforms, corporate
infrastructure and governance and assessment and identification of strategic
alternatives for the operation and/or disposal of the assets.
Lunt has led advisory projects involving all types of hospitality assets, including hotels, vacation ownership, mixed-use development, condominium-hotels, golf
courses, marinas, convention facilities and tourist attractions. He has focused his
activities on transaction due diligence and strategic development consulting. A
graduate of Cornell University and Chair of ULI’s Recreational Development Council,
Lunt is the author of many articles, is often quoted in industry and trade publications, and is an experienced speaker and lecturer on real estate and hospitality
issues. He serves on several industry organizations and is considered an expert in
operations, marketing and development of condominium-hotels, resorts and other
recreational real estate.
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34 th ANNUAL NEW YORK UNIVERSITY
International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
Melissa Maher
Timothy M. Marvin
Senior Vice President of Global Strategic Accounts and
Industry Relations
Expedia, Inc.
Managing Director, Americas
Host Hotels & Resorts
Melissa Maher leads Global Strategic Accounts Lodging
for Expedia, Inc., where she manages all aspects of the
business relationships with the company’s top strategic
hotel partners, and leads the team charged with
enhancing relationships for the industry’s leading
ownership and management companies. Maher also
heads up Expedia’s Industry Relations team, managing
Expedia’s relationships with key industry associations and hotel groups. Based in
Las Vegas, Maher also oversees the team responsible for driving the strategy,
distribution and support of Expedia’s Gaming lodging supply division.
During her tenure with Expedia, Maher has taken an active role in driving
meaningful dialogue within the hospitality industry regarding issues affecting
Expedia’s top lodging supply partners and other key stakeholders in the online
travel space. Previously, Maher served as Regional Director with Expedia with
oversight of the Nevada/Gaming lodging division. Prior to joining Expedia in 2001,
Maher opened the Paris Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas as the Director of Conference
Center Sales. She also served as Director of Tour & Conference Sales with the Las
Vegas Hilton.
Maher is an HSMAI board member, serves on the Starwood Leisure Advisory
Board and is a TIA TravelCom Committee member. She received an M.B.A. and a
B.S. in Hotel Administration from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.
Kevin E. Mallory
Senior Managing Director
CBRE Hotels
Kevin Mallory is Senior Managing Director and Americas
Practice Leader for CBRE Hotels. In this position, Mallory
oversees CBRE’s activity in the lodging sector including:
transaction, asset management, advisory and capital
market services.
Prior to joining CBRE Hotels, Mallory was Senior
Vice President of Hyatt Development Corporation. In that
capacity, he was responsible for all acquisition and investment activity, investment
management, business development, and property development for the company.
Mallory was a Principal with Lend Lease Real Estate Investments prior to
working at Hyatt. He was responsible for all lodging related capital transactions as
well as the company’s asset management function.
Before joining Lend Lease, Mallory was a founding executive and COO at
Starwood Lodging Corporation where his responsibilities ranged from the development of new business ventures to providing strategic and daily oversight for the
corporation. Mallory also worked for Westin Hotels & Resorts, VMS Realty Partners,
and lodging industry consultants Laventhol & Horwath.
Timothy M. Marvin is Managing Director, Acquisitions at
Host Hotels & Resorts, Inc. where he is responsible for
identifying real estate investment opportunities
throughout the Americas. Marvin has over 28 years of
hotel and real estate development experience, including
most recently, serving as Senior Vice President, Lodging
Development at Marriott International, Inc. where he was
responsible for developing the company’s full-service brand portfolio as well as
promoting the launch of the Autograph Collection, the hotelier’s division of
independent boutique hotels. During Marvin’s 23 year tenure at Marriott, he
supervised or directed numerous management and franchise contract negotiations
and development projects as well as conducted feasibility studies.
Additionally, Marvin currently serves on the scholarship committee for the
American Hotel & Lodging Educational Foundation and the Michigan State University Real Estate Development Advisory Council. Marvin earned his Bachelor of Arts
in Hospitality Business from Michigan State University.
Kathleen Matthews
Executive Vice President, Global Communications and Public Affairs
Marriott International, Inc.
Kathleen Matthews is the Chief Communications and
Public Affairs Officer for Marriott International, the
leading global hotel company based in Bethesda,
Maryland. She is responsible for the company’s external
and internal communications including global brand and
corporate public relations, corporate social responsibility
and government affairs. Matthews co-chairs Marriott’s
Executive Green Council and serves on the U.S. Travel and Tourism Advisory Board
to the Secretary of Commerce, as well as the boards of the U.S. Travel Association,
the International Tourism Partnership, and the Economic Club of Washington.
Matthews is also currently active in the World Economic Forum Policy Councils.
Matthews is a graduate of Stanford University, and was a 2004 Fellow at the
Institute of Politics at the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University. She
has honorary degrees from the University of South Carolina and Chestnut Hill College
in Philadelphia. Matthews is active in her community, and has served on the boards
of Catholic Charities, the Black Student Fund, Suited for Change, Ford’s Theatre,
Shakespeare Theatre Company, Nantucket Film Festival and Dreamland Theater.
Prior to her career at Marriott, Matthews was an award winning news anchor
at the ABC-TV affiliate in Washington, D.C., for 25 years and hosted the nationally syndicated “Working Woman” television show. Matthews has been named
Washingtonian of the Year by Washingtonian Magazine, a “Woman Who Means
Business” by the Washington Business Journal. Matthews has also been awarded
nine local Emmys and other top honors during her journalism career.
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34 th ANNUAL NEW YORK UNIVERSITY
International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
Corey McCarthy
Robert J. McDowell
Vice President
Hotel Interactive
Senior Vice President, Global Distribution
Choice Hotels International
Corey McCarthy has been a part of the hospitality
industry for 10 years and carries a perspective on social
media that only a publishing professional can. She is a
passionate lead user of all types of new media and
thrives on finding ways to use new media to help
businesses grow. McCarthy is currently the Vice
President of Hotel Interactive, a digital media company
that serves the hospitality industry. Hotel Interactive is the industry’s leading
online publication and has deep roots in the digital and social media landscape.
Before holding this position, she was the Associate Publisher of Lodging Hospitality
where she helped implement the social media strategy, a digital version of the
print publication and mobile version of the website.
After receiving her Bachelor of Business Administration with a marketing
major, McCarthy achieved her M.B.A. at Saint Mary’s College of California where
she honored in marketing and business strategy.
Robert J. McDowell is Senior Vice President of Global
Distribution for worldwide lodging franchisor Choice
Hotels International, Inc. In this role, he is responsible for
the development and execution of Choice’s growing
global, multi-channel marketing and distribution strategy.
Additionally, McDowell oversees all direct distribution
channels, revenue management, global sales and
marketing channels, eCommerce, and all channel partner relationships.
Prior to joining Choice, McDowell spent 15 years with United Airlines. During
this time, McDowell was the Managing Director of Distribution and E-commerce.
As the acting director, McDowell formulated effective E-commerce and distribution
strategy. In addition, he often delved into the rigors of negotiating credit card fees
and GDS budgets on behalf of the airline. McDowell also served as Chief Operating
Officer for C&H International, a $600 million international travel agency, overseeing
the company’s daily operations. McDowell earned his Master’s degree in Business
Administration from the University of Notre Dame and his Bachelor’s degree from
the New York Institute of Technology.
Thomas P. McConnell
Executive Managing Director, Global Hospitality Group
Cushman & Wakefield, Equity, Debt & Structured Finance
Thomas P. McConnell is a senior managing director of
the Hotel Transactions Group. He specializes in hotel real
estate transaction advisory, brokerage, investment
advisory, asset management and other related services.
McConnell’s experience in the hospitality industry spans
two decades, and he has held advisory and consulting
roles in numerous market and economic analyses of
hotel investments, valuation, management contracts, finance and hotel company
transactions.
Over his 20-year career, McConnell has been involved in numerous hotel
transaction and consulting engagements related to investment advisory, finance
and refinance, operational consulting, workout consulting and brokerage. He has
worked with virtually all of the major, international hotel companies including Four
Seasons, Hilton, Starwood and Marriott. He also counts various Wall Street firms
and investors as clients, including Credit Suisse First Boston, UBS, Morgan Stanley,
Goldman Sachs, Citigroup, J.P. Morgan Chase and others.
Before joining C&W, McConnell worked for CB Richard Ellis Hotels. Prior to
that, he worked with Arthur Andersen LLP as Director of Hospitality Consulting
Services in the firm’s New York City office. Previously, he held senior positions with
Kenneth Leventhal & Company, and Laventhol & Horwath. He is a frequent lecturer
and speaker at industry conferences and is often quoted in various national
publications on hospitality-related issues. McConnell has an undergraduate degree
from Brown University and a graduate degree from the Cornell University School of
Hotel Administration.
Gordon McKinnon
Executive Vice President and Chief Branding Officer
Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group
As Executive Vice President and Chief Branding Officer
for Carlson, Gordon McKinnon is part of a global strategic
team and is focused on defining and implementing the
positioning of Carlson. Carlson’s hotel brands include
Radisson Blu, Radisson, Park Plaza, Park Inn by
Radisson, Country Inns & Suites By Carlson and Hotel
Missoni.
McKinnon is based in Minneapolis and reports to Hubert Joly, President
and Chief Executive Officer, Carlson. McKinnon came to Carlson from The Rezidor
Hotel Group based in Brussels, Belgium, where he was Executive Vice President
of Brands and Brand Leader of Hotel Missoni, for which he was responsible for
defining and establishing the concept in terms of design, architecture, strategic
locations, operations and service standards. Carlson is the main shareholder of
Rezidor, which is one of the fastest growing hotel companies in the world.
In 2002, as part of an acquisition of London-based Malmaison Hotels, McKinnon joined Rezidor as Vice President of Brand and Concept Development, which
involved positioning and defining current and future hotel brands and concepts.
During this time at Rezidor, he also served as the Managing Director of the
Malmaison Brand Company. Before joining Rezidor, McKinnon was vice president
of marketing for the Malmaison hotels where his main responsibilities included
the creation, control and promotion of the brand. In addition, McKinnon has held
several leadership positions at marketing, media and communications companies
in the United Kingdom.
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34 th ANNUAL NEW YORK UNIVERSITY
International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
Gary M. Mendell
Mike Mixer
Chairman and Chief Executive Officer
HEI Hotels & Resorts
Executive Managing Director
Colliers International Hotels USA
Gary M. Mendell currently serves as Chairman and Chief
Executive officer of HEI Hotels & Resorts. He is
responsible for overseeing all aspects of HEI, including
corporate strategy, capital formation, investor relations
and the firm’s overall investment and property
management. Mendell co-founded HEI’s predecessor in
1985, which became one of the fastest growing hotel
investment firms in the United States. In 1997 he sold a majority of the company to
Starwood Lodging Trust where he was named president and elected to the board
of trustees. Mendell resigned his position in 1998 to pursue entrepreneurial
activities that led to creating HEI Hotels & Resorts in 2002.
Mendell is a member of the Industry Real Estate Finance Advisory Council
(IREFAC), Clinton Global Initiative, MINA Advisory Board, Real Estate Roundtable and
the UJA Federation Campaign Steering Committee. He is also a regular speaker at
several industry conferences. Mendell graduated from Cornell University and holds
an M.B.A. with distinction from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.
Mike Mixer is the Executive National Director of the
Colliers International U.S. Hotels Practice Group and the
Managing Partner and Co-Founder of the Colliers
International Las Vegas office, the leading full-service
commercial real estate firm in Southern Nevada. An
expert in the resort and gaming market, Mixer’s expertise
has been used by many of the top development and
investment firms throughout the world. Mixer has been a dominant force in the
company’s success in all aspects of the real estate business and has consistently
been ranked one of the top three brokers at Colliers International with billions of
dollars in real estate transactions.
Mixer began his career in the Resort/Gaming field in 1987 as a casino marketing specialist, working for Steve Wynn at the Golden Nugget Hotel. Mixer began
his Commercial Real Estate career in Las Vegas in 1988 with a firm that built and
owned numerous office, retail, and resort projects throughout Southern Nevada
and California. In 1993, Mixer combined his knowledge and experience to form
Stuart Mixer Commercial, (now known as Colliers International Las Vegas).
Mixer currently leads the U.S. Hotels Services Services Group focusing
primarily on existing hotels, resort hotel projects, gaming properties, mixed-use
and redevelopment sites in and around the Las Vegas resort corridors and the
University District. Mixer has represented notable clients such as MGM MIRAGE,
The Related Companies, American Nevada Corporation, Wynn Resorts and Morgans
Hotel Group. Mixer is continually sought after for his knowledge and experience
in the continuing evolution of the Las Vegas resort corridor, particularly among an
increasing international client base.
Mixer serves on the Colliers International Governing Committee (CIGC), which
oversees the Colliers International brand on a global scale. He also serves on the
Board of Directors for Colliers Parrish, a collection of nine Colliers offices in the
Western United States, and is Chairman of the Colliers USA Board of Advisors. He
has been an active member of the Urban Land Institute (ULI), served on the Board
of Directors for the National Association of Office and Industrial Properties (NAIOP),
was a past chairperson for NAIOP’s Commercial Real Estate Political Action Committee, and was a founding bank board director of the Bank of Las Vegas. He is
an active member of the Las Vegas Chamber of Commerce and the UNLV Hotel
College Alumni Chapter. Mixer earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Investment
Finance and a Bachelor’s degree in Hotel Administration from the University of
Nevada, Las Vegas.
Michael Miller
Vice President, Architecture and Design
Hyatt Hotels Corporation
Michael Miller is Vice President, Architecture and Design
for Hyatt Hotels Corporation. In this role Miller is
responsible for overseeing the design of Hyatt’s full
service North American hotels to ensure that all projects
comply with Hyatt’s design philosophy and brand
standards, and also meet financial and operational objectives. Currently there are approximately 140 hotels in
Hyatt’s North American full service portfolio which includes the Park Hyatt, Andaz,
Grand Hyatt, Hyatt Regency and Hyatt brands. Miller supervises a team of five
Architecture and Design Managers, developing long and short range plans for
individual properties, selecting appropriate design firms and interfacing with
project teams and ownership groups to communicate Hyatt’s design feedback and
guidance. In addition, Miller is responsible for developing corporate design
standards and technical specifications, evaluating existing hotel properties for
possible sale, purchase or conversion to Hyatt branding and assisting hotel
management teams with developing capital plans and project budgets and
schedules. Miller is a licensed architect and a member of the American Institute of
Architects. He has a Master of Architecture and a Master of Business Administration from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and sits on the Board of
Overseers of the College of Architecture at the Illinois Institute of Technology.
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34 th ANNUAL NEW YORK UNIVERSITY
International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
Richard J. Moreau
Francis J. Nardozza
Executive Vice President, Chief Operating Officer
Strategic Hotels & Resorts, Inc.
Chairman and Chief Executive Officer
REH Capital Partners LLC
Richard J. Moreau was named Executive Vice President,
Chief Operating Officer of Strategic Hotels & Resorts, Inc.
in September 2011. He had served as Strategic’s
Executive Vice President—Asset Management since
2005. Moreau previously served as Strategic’s Vice
President—Asset Management from 1997 to 2003 and
Senior Vice President—Asset Management from 2003
until 2005. Moreau is responsible for the asset management of all of Strategic’s
properties. Moreau has been in the hospitality industry for over 30 years in both
property and multi-unit operation positions. From 1992 until he joined Strategic in
November 1997, Moreau was Principal at Gremor Hospitality, a hotel asset
management company. From 1988 until 1992, he was a principal and Executive
Vice President at Inn America Corporation, an independent hotel management
company. He was responsible for the day-to-day operations of 22 full service
hotels and resorts operating under franchise agreements with Hilton, Sheraton and
Holiday Inn. From 1985 until 1988, he was a Vice President of Operations for Hyatt
Hotels and Resorts, where he was responsible for the development and implementation of all pre-opening and operating procedures for six prototype Hyatt hotels.
From 1972 to 1985, Moreau worked for The Howard Johnson Company.
Francis J. Nardozza is Chairman and Chief Executive
Officer of REH Capital Partners, LLC, a national
investment and advisory services firm to the real estate
and hospitality industries. Nardozza has over 36 years of
diversified experience in real estate and hospitality
investment, finance, and consulting. He is recognized
nationally and internationally for his work in the areas of
mergers and acquisitions, real estate and hotel investment and development, and
strategic advisory services, and has advised on over $15 billion in real estate and
hospitality transactions throughout his professional career.
Prior to launching REH, Nardozza was a Partner and served as the National
and Global Real Estate and Hospitality Consulting Practice Leader for KPMG, LLP
and KPMG Consulting, Inc., (now known as Bearing Point), where his tenure with
the firms spanned over 25 years.
Nardozza is a member of the Executive Advisory Board of the Real Estate
School of the College of Business - Florida State University, and serves on the
Executive Planning Committee for the New York University International Hospitality
Industry Investment Conference. He is founding Chairperson of the U.S. Lodging
Industry Investment Council Association, and past chairman of the “Market, Finance,
and Investment Analysis Committee” of the American Hotel & Lodging Association.
Nardozza has established and endowed the “Nardozza Real Estate Scholars
Program” at Florida State University and serves on the Board of Directors of the
H.O.P.E. Outreach Center of Broward County. Nardozza is a CPA and a graduate
of Florida State University, B.S. Accounting. Additionally, he has completed the
executive program on international business at The Wharton School, University of
Pennsylvania.
W. Michael Murphy
Head of Lodging and Leisure Capital
First Fidelity Companies
W. Michael Murphy has been active for over 30 years in
all aspects of hospitality industry transactions. He has
extensive experience in hotel acquisitions, development,
property sales, finance and joint ventures as well as in
corporate mergers and acquisitions. Murphy has held
executive positions with Holiday Inns, Inc., Metric
Partners, Geller & Co. and ResortQuest International, Inc.
where his roles have ranged from Chief Investment Officer to Managing Partner in
charge of hotel acquisitions, sales and finance. In addition to principal activities,
Murphy was responsible for the investment banking operations of Metric Partners
and as Senior Managing Director of Geller & Co. led numerous asset management
assignments on behalf of institutional lodging owners.
Murphy has served three times as Co-Chairman of the Industry Real Estate
Finance Advisory Council (IREFAC) of the American Hotel and Lodging Association
and is a member of the Board of Directors of Ashford Hospitality Trust. Murphy is
also a founding board member of the Atlanta Hospitality Alliance. Murphy holds
a B.S. in English from the University of Memphis and an M.A. in English from the
University of Iowa.
Christopher J. Nassetta
President and Chief Executive Officer
Hilton Worldwide
Christopher J. Nassetta is President and Chief Executive
Officer of Hilton Worldwide. He joined the company in
2007. Previously, Nassetta was President and Chief
Executive Officer of Host Hotels & Resorts, Inc., a position
he held since 2000. He joined Host Hotels & Resorts,
Inc., in 1995 as Executive Vice President and was elected
Chief Operating Officer in 1997.
Before joining Host Hotels & Resorts, Inc., Nassetta co-founded Bailey Capital
Corporation in 1991, where he was responsible for the operations of the real
estate investment and advisory firm. Prior to founding Bailey Capital Corporation, he spent seven years at The Oliver Carr Company, ultimately serving as Chief
Development Officer. In this role, he was responsible for all development and
related activities for one of the largest commercial real estate companies in the
mid-Atlantic region.
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34 th ANNUAL NEW YORK UNIVERSITY
International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
Nassetta serves on numerous boards and organizations such as CoStar
Group, Inc., The Real Estate Roundtable, Federal City Council member, McIntire
School of Commerce Advisory Board for the University of Virginia, and the Arlington
Free Clinic. Nassetta graduated from the University of Virginia McIntire School of
Commerce with a degree in finance.
Sam Nazarian
Founder, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer
sbe
Sam Nazarian brings an uncompromising entrepreneurial
instinct, immeasurable drive and considerable business
acumen to his role as Founder, Chairman and Chief
Executive Officer of sbe, one of the fastest growing
hospitality and lifestyle companies in North America.
Nazarian leads sbe’s divisions – including Hotels,
Restaurants and Nightlife – in all phases of development
and operations. He began his career by diversifying his assets into real estate
holdings, through partnerships with the country’s leading developers and investors
across all sectors of the market. This experience, combined with a razor-sharp
creative vision, provided the catalyst for his creation of sbe in 2002. From the
launch of sbe’s first nightclub in 2002, Nazarian has evolved sbe into the definitive
name in hospitality with a collection that includes some of the most exclusive
hotels, restaurants and nightlife destinations in the world. To create sbe’s
award-winning portfolio of 39 properties nationwide, Nazarian has aligned with
renowned design and culinary talents such as Philippe Starck and Matthew
Rolston and chefs José Andrés and Katsuya Uechi. Named one of the “Top 100
Most Powerful People in Southern California” by West, Los Angeles Times’
magazine, Nazarian was recently honored with the Mondavi Wine & Food award.
Jonathan C. Nehmer
President
Jonathan Nehmer + Associates, Inc.
Jonathan C. Nehmer, AIA, ISHC is an expert in the
development, design, and construction of hospitality
projects. Nehmer founded Jonathan Nehmer +
Associates, Inc. in 1989 to provide Architecture, Project
Management, and Design and Construction Consulting to
the hospitality industry. He is also Managing Principal
with HVScompass Interior Design. A licensed architect in
38 states and the District of Columbia, Nehmer has more than 30 years of
experience as an architect, designer, and owner’s representative for the hospitality
industry. Prior to founding Jonathan Nehmer + Associates, Inc., Nehmer directed
the design and construction of real estate development projects for several major
corporations, including Marriott International and Ramada, Inc. During his tenure at
Ramada, Inc., he developed designs for the new Ramada prototype hotels and
authored the “Standards for Design and Construction” for Ramada Hotels, Inns,
and Renaissance Hotels.
Nehmer has been responsible for the design and construction of major hotel
brands throughout the U.S., including Ritz Carlton, Westin, Marriott, St. Regis,
Renaissance, Hilton, Hyatt, Four Seasons, Wyndham, Sheraton, Ramada, Crowne
Plaza, Embassy Suites, Holiday Inn, Courtyard by Marriott, Hilton Garden Inn, Residence Inn, Aloft, Element, Hampton Inn, Doubletree, and other independent hotels.
He has been a frequent speaker at industry events and has authored numerous
articles relating to hotel design and construction.
In 2009, Nehmer and the JN+A team created the first Hotel Cost Estimating
Guide, a comprehensive guide that provides rule-of-thumb ranges of costs for
various levels of renovation in six hotel tiers: Economy, Extended Stay, Midscale,
Upscale, Upper Upscale, and Luxury. Now in its fourth year, this highly-detailed
cost guide quickly became popular with hoteliers across North America as a
reference in planning for renovation, and the guide continues to be updated and
published with new data each year.
Dennis Nessler
Editor
Hotel Business
Dennis Nessler is the Editor of Hotel Business magazine
and has covered the lodging industry for better than nine
years now as part of his more than 20 years of
experience in trade journalism. In his position, Nessler
covers all aspects of lodging, both writing and editing
news stories for the magazine as well as items for
HotelBusiness.com, the publication’s website. Nessler is
also a Contributing Editor for Hotel Business Design, a sister publication of Hotel
Business specializing in hotel design.
Jay A. Neveloff
Partner
Kramer Levin Naftalis & Frankel LLP
Jay A. Neveloff represents clients in all aspects of
transactional real estate. He has represented
developers of numerous mixed-use projects, including
Time Warner Center, as well as numerous regional and
local shopping centers, and other commercial projects
throughout the country.
Recently, Neveloff represented Saint Vincent Catholic Medical Centers in the sale of the former hospital site. Neveloff also represented
Starwood Hotels in selling the retail portion of the St. Regis Hotel, Manhattan; the
owner of Starrett City, the largest federally subsidized housing complex in the
United States, in a capital transaction; New York Life Insurance Company in the
sale of Manhattan House, a residential complex compromising an entire block of
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34 th ANNUAL NEW YORK UNIVERSITY
International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
Manhattan; and The New Frontier Hotel Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada. Neveloff has
represented Donald Trump for more than 30 years in innumerable matters.
Neveloff is also a leading practitioner of innovative hotel condominium
projects, including The Plaza Hotel, the St. Regis in Manhattan and Trump Soho,
and successfully obtained a critical SEC no-action letter involving the hotel condominium structure for Trump International, New York.
Neveloff received his J.D. from New York University and was elected to the
American Law Institute, American College of Real Estate Lawyers and American
College of Mortgage Attorneys.
Ralph Newman
Chief Operating Officer
WTS International
Joining WTS in 1998, Ralph Newman is COO of WTS
International, one of the world’s largest and fastestgrowing spa and leisure consulting and management
firms. Currently, WTS provides its services to over 100
hotels, resorts, luxury residential properties, golf clubs,
day spas and real estate developments worldwide.
Newman has been active in the spa, fitness and
wellness industry since 1978. Before joining WTS, Newman developed and managed
Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts’ flagship spa and fitness facility at their Georgetown property in Washington, D.C. He also collaborated on the conceptual development and design of numerous other fitness and spa facilities for Four Seasons
properties throughout the United States and Canada. Additionally, prior to joining Four
Seasons, Newman was an Assistant Professor at the National Defense University in
Washington, D.C. for the Department of Defense in management, educational and
research capacities, where he concluded his career in the public sector.
Newman received an M.A. from George Washington University and a B.A.
from The University of Virginia. Newman has been a frequent lecturer on the design
and operation of spas and wellness facilities at CMAA, HD Expo, IHRSA, Hotel Developer’s Conference, 1st South American Hotel & Tourism Investment Conference,
JMBM Meet the Money, and many other professional conferences worldwide.
Chip Ohlsson
Vice President of Development; Northeast, Midwest and Canada
Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.
Chip Ohlsson joined Starwood Hotels and Resorts
Worldwide, Inc as the Vice President of Development for
the Northeast and Midwest territories of the United
States and all of Managed and Franchised Development
in Canada. He is an industry veteran with over 19 years
of experience in hotel development. Upon joining
Starwood in 2006, Ohlsson was instrumental in the
successful launch of the Aloft and Element brands. In addition to facilitating the
growth of Aloft and Element, he also has added responsibility of growing the
footprints for all of Starwood’s franchised hotel brands, which includes Westin,
Sheraton, Four Points by Sheraton, Le Meridien and the Luxury Collection, W Hotels
and St. Regis.
Ohlsson began his career in the hospitality industry in 1993 working for
HFS as Director of Development, which is now known as Wyndham Hotels
Worldwide. Working his way up to Senior Vice President of North America, his
responsibilities included facilitating the growth of their nine brands across the
United States and Canada.
Keith M. Pattiz
Chairman, Real Estate Practice Group / Managing Partner, New York
McDermott Will & Emery LLP
Keith M. Pattiz is a partner in the law firm of McDermott
Will & Emery LLP and is based in the Firm’s New York
office. He is the partner-in-charge of the New York office
and head of the Firm’s Real Estate Group. Pattiz has
extensive experience in the areas of commercial leasing,
financing, sales and acquisitions, hotel transactions, and
real estate workout matters. Clients have included major
residential, office, hotel and shopping center developers, lending institutions, and
foreign and U.S. investors.
Pattiz has been a regular panelist at the New York University International
Hospitality Industry Investment Conference and has served as moderator for the
panel on legal developments in the hospitality industry. Pattiz has been recognized
as a leading real estate lawyer in Chambers USA 2011 and in the 2006-2011 editions of The Best Lawyers in America and Super Lawyers.
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34 th ANNUAL NEW YORK UNIVERSITY
International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
Daniel C. Peek
Jason Pomeranc
Senior Managing Director
HFF
Co-Chairman
Commune Hotels & Resorts
Daniel C. Peek is a Senior Managing Director in the Miami
office of HFF (Holliday Fenoglio Fowler, L.P.), and is
primarily responsible for institutional-grade hotel and
resort property transactions throughout North America,
Latin America and the Caribbean. During the course of
his career, Peek has completed close to $8 billion in
investment sale, debt and structured finance transactions.
Peek joined the firm in October 2007. Prior to HFF, he was a co-Founder
and Managing Director of Regent Street, an affiliate of The Plasencia Group, Inc.
(TPG), a boutique firm specializing in sale, financing and advisory services for
distinctive hotels and resorts throughout the Americas. He also served as Senior
Vice President at TPG, handling hotel and resort property transactions in the
Northeastern, Mid-Atlantic and Southeastern regions. Before TPG, Peek worked in
hotel operations and consulting, including a variety of management positions with
Marriott International and Wiengardner & Hammons, and later as a consultant with
HVS International in New York.
Peek is a member of the Hotel Development Council, the Urban Land
Institute, and the Cornell Hotel Society. He is a licensed Real Estate salesperson in
Florida and received a Bachelor’s degree from Cornell University.
Co-Chairman of Commune Hotels & Resorts, Jason
Pomeranc, is an entrepreneur, and hotelier recognized for
his creative and innovative approach and contributions to
hotel living. Pomeranc joined his family’s real estate
development firm, the Pomeranc Group, in 1997. He has
been the force behind Thompson Hotels, consisting of 60
Thompson, 6 Columbus, Gild Hall, Thompson LES and
Smyth Tribeca in New York City, The Hollywood Roosevelt and Thompson Beverly
Hills in Los Angeles, Thompson Ocean Drive, in Miami, Thompson Toronto, and
Belgraves in London.
Co-founded by Pomeranc in October 2011, Commune Hotels & Resorts is the
parent company of Thompson Hotels and Joie de Vivre Hotels. Based in New York
City, Commune manages 46 hotels, and is focused on global expansion. Currently
under development are Thompson properties in Miami, Chicago, New York and
Cabo, along with Joie de Vivre hotels in Honolulu and Palo Alto, California.
David Pepper
Senior Vice President, Global Development
Choice Hotels International, Inc.
David Pepper is Senior Vice President, Global Development for worldwide lodging franchisor Choice Hotels
International, Inc. In this position, he is responsible for
driving unit growth for each of the company’s brands in
key markets worldwide. A member of the executive team
of Choice Hotels, he also is an officer of the company.
Pepper joined Choice in 2002 as Vice President
of Franchise Sales and Development for the company’s new construction brands.
In 2004, he was promoted to Senior Vice President of Franchise Development for
North America. In January 2005, Pepper served as an integral part of the team that
launched the Cambria Suites brand and in September 2005, he led the company’s
acquisition of the Suburban Extended Stay Hotel brand.
During his tenure at Choice, Pepper has been responsible for leading franchise sales to record levels. In 2009, in recognition of his proven track record in
driving significant unit growth for the company, Pepper was named to his current
position as Senior Vice President, Global Development.
Prior to joining Choice, Pepper spent six years with U.S. Franchise Systems
as Vice President of Franchise Sales for Hawthorn Suites and Microtel Inns. He
also spent five years with Holiday Inn Worldwide as a Director of Franchise Sales.
A graduate of Tufts University, Pepper has 20 years of experience in the hospitality
industry and is actively involved in a number of organizations.
Alfred Pisani
Founder and Group Chairman
Corinthia Hotels
Alfred Pisani, a visionary, self-made Maltese businessman, Founder and Group Chairman, Corinthia Hotels,
started with a loan in the newly independent island of
Malta, building a restaurant that he grew to a hotel
empire. Today, the Corinthia Hotels, celebrating its 50th
Anniversary, is an internationally-acclaimed brand of
award-winning luxury hotels, located in London, St.
Petersburg, Budapest, Tripoli, Lisbon, Prague, and in Malta. Corinthia Hotel London
recently unveiled ‘The Seven Penthouses of Corinthia London’, a collection of
exclusive two-storey Penthouse hotel suites, heralding a new era of luxury
accommodation for the city.
This year marks the inaugural Alfred Pisani Corinthia Hotels Scholarship and
the Tisch Center/Corinthia Hotels Internship and Management Training Program at
the NYU School of Continuing and Professional Studies (NYU-SCPS) Preston Robert
Tisch Center for Hospitality, Tourism, and Sports Management.
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34 th ANNUAL NEW YORK UNIVERSITY
International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
Due to space and sustainability, speaker bios have been
edited for brevity. Please consider the environment
before printing this document.
Elizabeth Pizzinato
Vasant M. Prabhu
Senior Vice President, Marketing and Communications
Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts
Vice Chairman and Chief Financial Officer
Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.
Elizabeth Pizzinato is responsible for global digital
marketing, social media, marketing communications,
public relations, corporate communications and
reputation management on behalf of the Four Seasons
brand. With an ever-expanding portfolio of hotels in more
than 35 countries, building the brand’s reputation and
leadership in the luxury sector through strategic
marketing activities is both challenging and rewarding. Her scope of responsibility
encompasses the company’s brand-level communications activities in interactive,
digital, advertising, promotions, direct marketing, and the Four Seasons magazine
and newsletters. Pizzinato also oversees strategic media relations outreach; crisis
management; corporate social responsibility initiatives and reputation management.
She joined Four Seasons in 1999 from Hill & Knowlton Canada, where she
was Vice President and Practice Leader for the Marketing Communications group.
Prior to Hill & Knowlton, Pizzinato was an Account Director with Strategic Objectives Inc., an award-winning consumer media relations boutique agency. She
began her marketing career managing media and employee communications for
a women’s wear retail chain. Pizzinato graduated from Ryerson University with a
Business degree in Retail Management. Before focusing on communications and
public relations, she worked in operations as a sales trainer and sales manager in
the retail sector.
Vasant M. Prabhu is Vice Chaiman and Chief Financial
Officer for Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.
Prabhu is responsible for accounting, tax, treasury,
strategic planning, corporate development, risk
management, investor relations and technology functions
of the corporation.
Prabhu is a seasoned, established business leader
with more than 20 years of experience in corporate finance and management.
Prior to joining Starwood in December 2003, he served as Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer for Safeway Inc., one of North America’s largest
food retailers.
Prabhu’s background also indicates various senior executive positions, including President of Information and Media Group for The McGraw Hill Companies,
where he managed a $1 billion division with more than 4,000 employees, and
Senior Vice President of Finance and Chief Financial Officer for Pepsi Cola International, where he was responsible for company’s franchise and owned operations in
more than 100 countries. Prabhu holds an M.B.A. in Marketing and Finance from
the University of Chicago and a B.S. in Engineering from the Indian Institute of
Technology in Bombay, India.
Stephen D. Plavin
Chief Executive Officer
Capital Trust, Inc.
Stephen D. Plavin is the Chief Executive Officer of Capital
Trust, Inc, a New York-based commercial mortgage REIT,
investment manager and commercial mortgage-backed
securities special servicer. Formed in 1997, Capital Trust
has invested over $11.0 billion and currently manages
more than $4.0 billion in commercial real estate-related
mezzanine loans, B-Notes, CMBS and first mortgage
loans on behalf of its shareholders, special servicing clients and investors in
company-sponsored commercial real estate debt funds. Hospitality-related assets
account for a significant component of the Capital Trust assets under management.
Prior to joining Capital Trust in 1998, Plavin was co-Head of Global Real
Estate for The Chase Manhattan Bank and Chase Securities Inc. Plavin serves as a
Director of Omega Healthcare Investors, Inc., a skilled nursing real estate investment trust and as non-executive Chairman of the Board for WCI Communities, a
privately held developer of residential communities. Plavin has a B.A. from Tufts
University and an M.B.A. from Northwestern University.
Brian Quinn
Executive Vice President – Development
Driftwood Hospitality Management
With more than 25 years of hospitality industry
experience, Brian Quinn is a seasoned development
expert with global relationships and a diverse
background. As Executive Vice President – Development for Driftwood Hospitality Management, Quinn is
responsible for managing industry relations and evolving
the company’s growth strategy. Prior to joining
Driftwood, Quinn served as Vice President, Upscale Development for IHG
(InterContinental Hotels Group), overseeing growth of the Crowne Plaza and Hotel
Indigo brands. Under his leadership, Crowne Plaza was recognized as the
fastest-growing upscale brand four years consecutively. Other previous leadership
positions during Quinn’s 20 year IHG career spanned franchise services, owner
relations and hotel operations. Previously, Quinn served as Director of Franchise
Sales and Development for Hilton Hotels Corp., where he implemented growth
initiatives for the Hilton, DoubleTree, Embassy Suites, Homewood Suites and
Hampton Inn brands. Quinn holds a degree in Business Administration from the
University of South Florida.
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34 th ANNUAL NEW YORK UNIVERSITY
International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
Allison Reid
Gregory W. Rockett
Senior Vice President of Development and Acquisitions –
North America
Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.
Vice President of Corporate Hotel Development
Hilton Worldwide
Allison Reid is Senior Vice President of North America
Development for Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide,
Inc. Starwood has a portfolio of nine distinctive and
compelling brands - St. Regis, The Luxury Collection, W
Hotels, Westin, Sheraton, Four Points by Sheraton, Le
Méridien, Aloft and Element - and is the world’s largest
luxury hotel operator. Reid joined the company in 2000
and oversees managed and franchised development for all nine Starwood brands.
She reports directly to Simon Turner, President of Global Development, and is a
member of the North America Senior Leadership team.
A seasoned, established business leader with more than 20 years of experience in the hospitality industry, Reid has spent the last 10+ years in leadership
roles in real estate, development, finance, operations and branding. These roles
include: SVP Global Development – focused on developing and implementing
Starwood’s global development strategy including finding creative financing solutions for owners and developers; SVP of Real Estate Investment – overseeing
Starwood’s global joint venture and lease positions; VP & CFO of W Hotels during
the growth phase and roll-out of related brands; VP Investor Relations and VP
Owner Services. She holds a gaming license from the State of Nevada and was
a member of the Board of Directors for the Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino,
W Montreal, and the Westin Savannah Resort. Prior to Starwood, Reid spent six
years at Interstate Hotels & Resorts Worldwide in various finance and regional
roles. She began her career with ITT Sheraton, as a corporate trainee at the St.
Regis New York.
Stephanie Ricca
Editor-in-Chief
Hotel Management Magazine
Stephanie Ricca is Editor-in-Chief of Hotel Management,
the hotel industry’s leading monthly trade publication
covering trends in hotel operations, real estate and
development. She joined the magazine in 2006, and has
ten years of experience in magazine editing and
newspaper reporting. Ricca is a graduate of the Medill
School of Journalism at Northwestern University.
Gregory W. Rockett joined the Hilton Development team
in June 2004 as Vice President, Development with
responsibility for hotel expansion in Latin America and
the Caribbean. In 2009, Rockett assumed responsibility
for Corporate Development in North America with a focus
on public-private hotel initiatives.
Rockett’s previous experience includes nine years
with the Hotel Development Group of Marriott International. While based in Madrid
for three years, he led the expansion efforts in Spain, Portugal and Italy. Prior to
that, Rockett was based in Washington, DC as Director of Feasibility and Market
Analysis in Latin America and the Caribbean. Rockett has been involved in the
hotel and tourism industry for more than 30 years, mostly focused on international
markets. He has a Bachelor’s degree in Hotel and Restaurant Management from
the University of Houston, Conrad N. Hilton College.
Javier Rosenberg
Chief Operating Officer, Radisson, Americas and Executive Vice
President, Owned and Managed Hotels, Americas
Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group
Javier Rosenberg is Chief Operating Officer for Radisson
hotels in the United States and Executive Vice President
of owned and managed hotels in the Americas. In this
role, he is focused on driving operational excellence in
Carlson’s owned and managed portfolio in the United
States in support of the company’s brand building efforts
and real estate value creation along with the repositioning of Radisson within the United States. He reports directly to Thorsten Kirschke,
President, Americas.
Rosenberg has extensive operational experience including serving as
Regional Director of Operations for InterContinental Hotels & Resorts in Mexico for
the Caribbean region, and General Manager of Raffles Hotel in Singapore. He most
recently served as Partner and Managing Director of Hospitality Knightsbridge
Partners in Buenos Aires, Argentina, where he led the creation of the hospitality
division and assisted in growth and development in Latin America.
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34 th ANNUAL NEW YORK UNIVERSITY
International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
Rick F. Ross
Chair, Hotels and Leisure
SNR Denton
Rick F. Ross is the global chair of SNR Denton’s Hotels
and Leisure practice. His practice includes representing
owners and operators in the acquisition, development,
financing and operation of hospitality/leisure projects,
negotiating and documenting hotel management and
license agreements, and structuring and documenting
hotels with residential and other mixed-use components.
In addition, Ross counsels clients on strategies regarding all aspects of hotel and
resort management and operations, from corporate-level policies and positioning
their brand to dealing with distressed hotels and resorts in an economic downturn.
Recognized as an industry expert, Ross advises clients globally on complex
hospitality/leisure projects in the areas of financing, acquisitions, development
and operations. Ross and the Hotels and Leisure practice are consistently ranked
“Band 1” nationally in the U.S. in Leisure and Hospitality by Chambers. Under
Ross’s leadership, the Hotels and Leisure practice has become one of the top two
ranked Hotels and Leisure practices in the U.S., and is regarded as one of the top
few in the world.
Karen E. Rubin
Senior Vice President, Global Development Policy and Feasibility
Starwood Hotels and Resorts Worldwide, Inc.
Karen E. Rubin joined Starwood Hotels and Resorts
Worldwide in 2000 and is Senior Vice President of Global
Development, Development Policy and Feasibility in the
Real Estate Group. In this position, Rubin manages the
creation and implementation of deal policy globally, and
is responsible for managing the Global Development
Committee. She is also responsible for underwriting new
deals including acquisitions, joint ventures, management contracts, mezzanine
loans, franchises, and new development for Starwood’s St. Regis, Sheraton, Westin,
Luxury Collection, Four Points by Sheraton, and W brands, as well as underwriting
related to Starwood’s extensive portfolio of owned and joint ventured assets. In
addition Rubin works closely with Starwood’s divisional development, finance,
legal, franchise operations and global brand teams to bring to fruition development
deals on a global basis.
Prior to joining Starwood, Rubin spent over 18 years at HVS International,
having been first retained as a consulting and valuation analyst and subsequently
promoted to Senior Vice President. Rubin was granted the American Hotel and
Motel Association’s Certified Hotel Administrator designation in 1991, and the
American Society of Real Estate Counselors’ Counselor of Real Estate (CRE) designation in 1992. She also holds the MAI designation from the Appraisal Institute,
and the FRICS designation from the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors. Rubin is
a certified general real estate appraiser in the states of Connecticut and New York.
Rubin’s published writings have appeared in a wide variety of periodicals
and she has also been frequently quoted in newspapers, periodicals and trade
publications throughout the nation. She is an avid educator within her industry,
and has presented seminars and lectured on hospitality-related topics at numerous educational institutions. Rubin has been qualified as an expert witness and
has provided expert testimony relating to hospitality property valuations and other
financially-related issues in courtrooms and administrative arenas throughout the
nation, including Federal Bankruptcy Court.
Rubin graduated with distinction from Cornell University’s School of Hotel
Administration. Rubin also conducted undergraduate study at the New School for
Social Research in New York City and at Brandeis University.
Andrew Rubinacci
Vice President, Distribution and Intermediary Sales
IHG (InterContinental Hotels Group)
Andrew Rubinacci is Vice President, Distribution and
Intermediary Sales, for InterContinental Hotels Group PLC
of the United Kingdom. In this role, Rubinacci is
responsible for all Third Party Internet, Luxury Travel and
Traditional Travel Agency strategy and distribution for
InterContinental Hotels Group’s family of brands.
Rubinacci is a 20-year veteran of the hospitality industry,
with extensive experience spanning sales, revenue management, guest services,
hotel operations and e-commerce. Most recently, Rubinacci served as Vice
President, Distribution Marketing, responsible for all facets of IHG’s reservations &
distribution for Europe, Middle East and Africa. Rubinacci started with IHG in the
managed hotel side of the company in 1991 in the management training program
at the Holiday Inn Select in Nashville, Tenn. After that, he continued to serve in
management roles at multiple properties, before moving into corporate roles in
revenue management, ecommerce and distribution. Rubinacci has held roles of
increasing responsibility with InterContinental Hotels Group, Bristol Hotels &
Resorts, and Meristar Hotels & resorts.
Rubinacci currently serves on the board of Open Travel and has previously
served on the board of Worldres, the Hotel Electronic Distribution Network Association (HEDNA), and the advisory board of HSMAI’s Revenue Management Special Interest Group. Rubinacci earned two Bachelor’s degrees in Business Administration,
majoring in Marketing and Hospitality Administration from Florida State University.
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34 th ANNUAL NEW YORK UNIVERSITY
International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
Steven A. Rudnitsky
President and Chief Executive Officer
Dolce Hotels and Resorts
Steven A. Rudnitsky joined Dolce Hotels and Resorts in
2008 as the next step in a 33-year career associated
with iconic consumer packaged goods companies
including Kraft, Nabisco, Pillsbury, PepsiCo and Johnson
& Johnson as well as hospitality companies including
Wyndham Worldwide where he built a reputation for
generating strong top- and bottom-line growth, turning
around distressed businesses and expanding into global markets.
As President and Chief Executive Officer of Dolce Hotels and Resorts, a
meetings-focused hospitality company that manages a portfolio of 27 hotels,
resorts and conference venues in the United States, Canada and Europe, Rudnitsky
oversees all aspects of the business and serves on the Board of Directors.
During the last three years, Rudnitsky launched a multi-year strategic plan,
restructured the company’s leadership and significantly improved the value of the
existing portfolio to property owners by increasing Dolce’s revenue contribution
from 19 to 47 percent. Rudnitsky also dramatically increased Dolce’s development
pipeline and added major properties including the iconic Silverado Resort in California’s Napa Valley and the former Ritz Carlton Lake Las Vegas Resort in Nevada.
Rudnitsky received the Stephen W. Brener Lodging Hospitality Silver Plate
Award at the New York University International Hospitality Industry Investment
Conference in 2007.
Stephen Rushmore, Jr.
Co-President and C.O.O.
HVS
Stephen Rushmore Jr. is Co-President and Chief
Operating Officer of HVS, the leading hospitality
consulting and services organization with 30 offices
around the globe. Stephen directs the worldwide
operation of the firm and is responsible for future office
expansion and new product development. Founded in
1980, HVS has provided consulting services and
solutions for thousands of clients in all 50 states and more than 60 foreign
countries for hotels, restaurants, mixed-use, shared ownership and leisure assets.
HVS also orchestrates major industry conferences and networking opportunities in
various regions of the world. HVS is the industry’s primary source of hotel sales
data, research, market studies and educational information relating to the
hospitality industry.
Prior to joining HVS in 2002, Rushmore was Senior Engineer with Sapient, an
enterprise application development firm, based in Cambridge, Massachusetts. He
traveled throughout the world developing techniques that enabled financial, energy
and telecommunication companies to increase internal efficiencies. In 2000 Rushmore founded Roadfood.com, a website dedicated to finding the most memorable
local eateries along the highways and back roads of America. The award-winning
website has been recognized by Forbes Magazine as the best restaurant guide
on the Internet, and Yahoo! awarded it the very prestigious “Web Site of the Year.”
More than 500,000 unique visitors visit the site on a monthly basis.
Rushmore is a state certified appraiser in New York, New Hampshire, and
New Jersey, and he frequently lectures at major hotel schools around the world.
Rushmore earned his Bachelor of Science degree from the Cornell School for Hospitality Administration. He is a member of the Young Presidents Organization (YPO)
and is on the Advisory Board for the Appalachian Mountain Club (AMC), the nation’s
oldest outdoor recreation and conservation organization.
Steve Rushmore
President and Founder
HVS
Steve Rushmore is the president and founder of HVS, a
global hospitality consulting organization with 30 offices
around the world. He directs the worldwide operation of
this firm and is responsible for future office expansion
and new product development. Rushmore has provided
consultation services for more than 15,000 hotels
throughout the world during his 40-year career and
specializes in complex issues involving hotel feasibility, valuations, and financing.
Rushmore was one of the creators of the Microtel concept and was instrumental in
its IPO. Rushmore is a partner in HEI Hospitality, LLC, a hotel investment fund,
which makes him one of the few hospitality consultants that actually invest in and
own hotels.
As a leading authority and prolific author on the topic of hotel feasibility studies and appraisals, Rushmore has written all five textbooks and two seminars for
the Appraisal Institute covering this subject. He has also authored three reference
books on hotel investing and has published more than 400 articles. Rushmore
writes a column for Lodging Hospitality magazine and is widely quoted by major
business and professional publications. Rushmore lectures extensively on hotel
trends and has taught hundreds of classes and seminars to more than 20,000
industry professionals. He is also a frequent lecturer at major hotel schools around
the world, including Lausanne, NYU, Cornell, Houston, and IMHI.
Rushmore has a Bachelor’s degree from the Cornell Hotel School and
an M.B.A. from the University of Buffalo. He holds MAI and FRICS appraisal
designations and is a CHA (certified hotel administrator). Rushmore is a member
of numerous hotel industry committees, including IREFAC and the New York
University International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference. In 1999,
Rushmore was recognized by the New York chapter of the Cornell Hotel Society
as “Hotelie of the Year.”
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34 th ANNUAL NEW YORK UNIVERSITY
International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
Carlo Santarelli
Neil H. Shah
Director, Gaming and Lodging Equity Research
Deutsche Bank Securities, Inc.
President and Chief Operating Officer
Hersha Hospitality Trust
Carlo Santarelli joined Deutsche Bank in July of 2011 as
a Research Analyst covering the Gaming and Lodging
sectors. Prior to joining Deutsche Bank, Santarelli spent
7 years on Wall Street covering Gaming and Lodging and
has three years of experience working as an Investment
Banking Analyst covering the consumer sector. Santarelli
graduated with a B.A. in Economics from the University
of Pennsylvania.
Mit Shah
Senior Managing Principal and Chief Executive Officer
Noble Investment Group
Mit Shah founded Noble in 1993 to specialize in making
value-added, opportunistic investments in the lodging
and hospitality real estate sector. Through its private
equity real estate funds,
Noble has invested more than $2 billion in upper
upscale and upscale hotels located throughout the
United States. The organization’s current real estate fund
represents $310 million of equity commitments.
Shah is President of the Franchise Advisory Board for Marriott International,
a board member of IREFAC and a board member for the Metro Atlanta Chamber.
Shah is also an active supporter of educational objectives as an executive committee member of the board of trustees for Wake Forest University where he chairs
both the audit, compliance, and risk committee and the athletics committee. He
is also an executive committee member for the Wake Forest Schools of Business,
an executive committee member of Woodward Academy’s Governing Board, and a
member of the United Way Tocqueville Society.
Neil H. Shah is President and Chief Operating Officer of
Hersha Hospitality Trust. Shah leads Hersha’s hotel
acquisitions, development, and asset management
platforms. Across the last ten years, Shah has been
instrumental in the acquisition and management of over
$2 billion of hotel real estate in major markets. Prior to
Hersha, Shah served as a Director and Consultant with
The Advisory Board Company and the Corporate Executive Board, strategy
research firms based in Washington DC. Shah has also worked with the Phipps
Foundation, contributing to urban renewal projects in New York City.
Shah serves on the Corporate Council for the National Constitution Center,
the Barnes Foundation, and is a Research Sponsor at the Wharton Real Estate
Center in Philadelphia. He is also a member of the Board of Directors of the
Educational Foundation Institute and the Institutional Real Estate Finance Advisory
Council (IREFAC) of the American Hotel & Lodging Association. Shah is an active
supporter of the United Way Worldwide and a Director of its Leadership Council for
India. Shah earned a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and a Bachelor of Science
in Management both with honors from the University of Pennsylvania and the
Wharton School. He also earned his M.B.A. from the Harvard Business School.
Suril Shah
Vice President, Acquisitions
Starwood Capital Group
Suril Shah is a Vice President in the Acquisitions Group at
Starwood Capital Group. Shah is responsible for
originating, structuring, underwriting and closing
investments in the lodging and gaming sectors. Shah is
an integral member of Starwood Capital’s hotel
acquisitions team, which has invested in over $7 billion
of hotel assets during the past six years.
Shah joined Starwood Capital in 2005 and spent three years as a member of
the management team of Groupe du Louvre, which owns, manages and franchises
more than 1,000 hotels throughout Europe under the Campanile, Premiere Classe
and Kyriad flags in addition to over a dozen luxury hotels including the Hotel de
Crillon and Hotel Martinez.
Prior to joining Starwood, Shah was with Gleacher Partners in New York City,
where he focused on mergers and acquisitions across all industries. Shah received
a B.S. in Management Science & Engineering from Stanford University.
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34 th ANNUAL NEW YORK UNIVERSITY
International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
Michael C. Shindler
Joel H. Simkins
Executive Vice President, Hotels and Casinos
Hard Rock International
Director
Credit Suisse
Michael C. Shindler is Executive Vice President – Hotels
and Casinos of Hard Rock International. At Hard Rock,
Shindler is responsible for all aspects of the hotels and
casinos portfolio, including both development and
operations. Before joining Hard Rock, Shindler was the
President of Four Corners Advisors, Inc., a hospitality
transactions consultancy and advisory firm he
established in June 2007. From May 2006 until June 2007, Shindler was Vice
President – Development & Asset Management for Las Vegas Sands Corp. He
served two stints with Hyatt Hotels Corporation (November 2003 to April 2006 and
October 1986 to October 1996), in senior transactional roles addressing both
domestic and international markets. Other hotel development experience includes
roles with Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group, RockResorts International, LLC/Vail
Resorts Lodging, and The Plasencia Group, and his gaming experience includes
serving as Chairman of Hyatt Gaming Management, Inc. (and its successor) for 18
months. Shindler began his career practicing law in Chicago.
Joel H. Simkins joined Credit Suisse as a Director in
August 2010 covering Gaming, Lodging, and Leisure.
Prior to joining Credit Suisse, Simkins was a Managing
Director at Macquarie Capital covering Gaming & Leisure
and at Prudential Equity Group as a Senior Gaming &
Leisure Analyst. During 2009, Simkins was named by
Institutional Investor Magazine as Best Up & Coming
Gaming/Lodging analyst. Simkins spent three years managing a long-short
portfolio at Slater Capital Management, a consumer sector focused hedge fund.
Prior to his buy-side experience, Simkins worked as an Associate for Deutsche
Bank Securities and Bear Stearns with Institutional Investor’s ranked equity and
fixed income analysts. He graduated from Hofstra University with a BBA Banking &
Finance, Highest Honors.
G. Christopher Smith
Noah J. Silverman
President
Ohana Real Estate Investors
Chief Development Officer, North America Full Service Hotels
Marriott International, Inc.
G. Christopher Smith is the President of Ohana Real
Estate Investors (OREI), a real estate investment
organization focused on the ownership and development
of high quality hotel and hospitality related assets. He is
responsible for oversight of all company related
activities. The company currently owns six operating
hotels and has three projects in development. The team at OREI that is comprised of experienced real estate professionals in development, construction, architecture and design, residential sales and
marketing, asset management/operations, finance and acquisitions. The company
maintains offices in Redwood City, CA, San Diego, CA and Honolulu, HI.
Smith is a member of Young Presidents’ Organization, Urban Land Institute,
a Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst (CAIA), a director at Brightdoor
Systems and a Board Member of The Dream Foundation. Smith is a graduate of
Amherst College.
Noah J. Silverman is Chief Development Officer, North
America Full Service Hotels for Marriott International, Inc.
He is responsible for overseeing all aspects of the
development process in the United States and Canada
for the Marriott, JW Marriott, Renaissance, Ritz-Carlton,
EDITION and Bvlgari brands and the Autograph
Collection.
Prior to his current role, Silverman served as Senior Vice President, Global
Asset Management, where he led Marriott’s asset management efforts on a
worldwide basis. Before that, he was Senior Vice President, Development Asset
Management, providing overall leadership in managing hotel deals from the time
a transaction is signed through opening. Before that, Silverman was Senior Vice
President, Project Finance, where he led a variety of complex transactions, including seeking outside investors to own Marriott’s company-owned hotels subject to
long-term management agreements.
Silverman joined Marriott in July 1997 in the Marriott Law Department. In
June 2002, he became Vice President, Global Asset Management, where he negotiated a number of transactions to preserve and enhance the stability and value
of Marriott’s long-term management and franchise agreements. Prior to joining
Marriott, Silverman was an associate with the law firm of Covington & Burling in
Washington, DC. He holds an A.B. from Princeton University and a J.D. from the
University of Pennsylvania Law School.
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International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
Randell A. Smith
Michael J. Sullivan
Chairman and Co-Founder
STR
Co-Managing Shareholder - Orlando Office and Co-Chair, Hotels,
Resorts and Clubs Practice Group
Greenberg Traurig, P.A.
Randell A. Smith is the Chairman and Co-Founder of STR
(Smith Travel Research, Inc), the leading authority on
lodging industry performance trends. In 2007, STR
expanded their benchmarking efforts outside of North
America with the creation of STR Global and now receives
data from over 44,000 hotels worldwide. STR founded the
STR family of companies and is proudly associated with
STR Global, RRC Associates, STR Analytics, and HotelNewsNow.com.
In 2011, Smith was inducted into the Hilton Hospitality Hall of Honor, named
one of the “Twenty Five Most Influential Executives of the Business Travel Industry
of 2011” by Business Travel News and was the recipient of the 2011 Lodging
Hospitality Magazine’s Stephen W. Brener Silver Plate Award. Smith was a 2007
inductee to the Florida State University College of Business Hall of Fame. He is
a member and past co-chairman of the Industry Real Estate Financing Advisory
Council (IREFAC) and the 2002 recipient of the prestigious IREFAC C. Everett
Johnson Award. He is also vice-chair of the American Hotel & Lodging Foundation Funding Committee. Smith is a charter member of the International Society of
Hospitality Consultants (ISHC) and a former member of the board of directors. He
was the recipient of the 1996 Industry Pioneer Award of the ISHC for outstanding
contribution to the lodging industry. Smith is a regular keynote speaker at the
major industry conferences. Prior to starting STR, Smith was Director of Research
for Laventhol & Horwath and has over twenty-five years experience in lodging
industry research. Jay Stein
Chief Operating Officer
Hampshire Hotels and Resorts
Jay Stein started his career in 1983 with Hilton
International at the Vista International Hotel in the World
Trade Center in New York City. After five years of
extensive food and beverage management positions
Stein joined Doral Hotels and became the Resident
Manager for the Doral Court Hotel in New York City. Stein
eventually became the Managing Director for the three
boutique Doral Hotels in New York and stayed on with those properties after
Starwood acquired the hotels. He joined Hampshire Hotels and Resorts as
Executive Vice President of Operations and now is the Chief Operating Officer for
Hampshire overseeing their ten hotels in New York City as well as their properties
in Miami, Bangkok, India and London. Stein also oversees the development of new
hotel projects for the company.
Stein has a Bachelor of Arts from Queens College and a degree in Hospitality
Management from NYC College of Technology.
Michael Sullivan is the co-Managing Shareholder of the
Orlando office of Greenberg Traurig and is the co-Chair
of Greenberg Traurig’s Hotels, Resorts and Clubs
Practice Group.
Sullivan specializes in the representation of real
estate developers, national hotel chains, lenders and
owners in the purchase, development, finance, leasing,
operation, management and licensing of hotels, condo-hotels, and resorts. He has
extensive experience in the negotiation of both public and private hotel management contracts and has negotiated public/private ventures on behalf of hotel
companies and owners with local governments and publicly owned convention
centers. He has extensive experience in hotel insolvency proceedings including
loan work-outs, foreclosures and bankruptcies. In addition, Sullivan’s practice
includes development of complex mixed use real estate developments and the
purchase, sale and financing of retirement communities, medical office buildings
and senior living communities.
Sullivan received his Juris Doctor degree, with Honors, from the University of
Connecticut School of Law and his Bachelor of Arts degree from Yale University.
Michael Talansky
Director of Operations
sbe Hotel Group
As Director of Hotel Operations and Director of sbeLive,
Talansky leverages his extensive background across
sbe’s entire hospitality platform. In his role with sbe’s
award-winning Hotel Group, Talansky has been
instrumental in the successful launches of SLS Hotel at
Beverly Hills, The Redbury Hotel in Hollywood and SLS
Hotel South Beach, opening May 2012. Following close
behind the launch of SLS Hotel South Beach, Talansky will lend his expertise to the
openings of SLS Hotels in Las Vegas and New York. Through sbeLive, Talansky has led sbe’s foray into the live sports and entertainment vertical, developing and opening luxury hospitality offerings at STAPLES
Center in Los Angeles and at American Airlines Arena in Miami. Prior to his time
with sbe, Talansky helmed guest services for the Hotel Giraffe in New York City. He
is a graduate of New York University’s Preston Robert Tisch Center for Hospitality,
Tourism, and Sports Management.
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International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
Kathleen Taylor
President and Chief Executive Officer
Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts
Kathleen Taylor is President and Chief Executive Officer
of Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts, responsible for overseeing all aspects of the company’s global operations.
Since joining Four Seasons in 1989, Taylor has played a
key role in its continued growth and success. The
company’s portfolio includes 86 hotels and resorts in 35
countries and there are currently more than 50 projects
in some stage of planning or development.
Prior to assuming the role of Chief Executive Officer in August 2010, Taylor
was Chief Operating Officer. She also served as President of Worldwide Business Operations for seven years, overseeing all aspects of the business, including
worldwide hotel and residential product design, construction and development
activities, managing the company’s acquisition and corporate planning, overseeing
corporate finance and legal affairs, human resources and administration.
Taylor’s business achievements have been recognized in recent years with
the Schulich Award for Outstanding Executive Leadership in 2001, the IREFAC
Chairman’s Award in 2003, Canadian General Counsel Award for Business
Achievement in 2006 and induction to the Marketing Hall of Legends in 2009. Last
year, Taylor accepted the Hennick Centre for Business and Law Medal for Career
Achievement and was honored with the International Society of Hospitality Consultants Pioneer Award and the Chairman’s Gold Award from the Ontario Hostelry Institute earlier this year. Most recently, Taylor was named one of the Top 100 Most
Powerful Women in Canada by the Women’s Executive Network and became the
first woman to receive HOTELS magazine Corporate Hotelier of the World award.
Taylor obtained a law degree from Osgoode Hall Law School and an M.B.A.
from the Schulich School of Business.
Manav Thadani
Co-Founder & Director
SAMHI Hotels PVT. Ltd.
Manav Thadani, Co-Founder of SAMHI Hotels is investing
and developing mid-market and budget hotels in India.
SAMHI is a privately held hotel company, which started fall
2011 with a corpus of approximately US$150 million. The
company currently has a portfolio of 1,000 plus rooms in
different stages of development with brands associations
with Marriott, Hyatt and other international brands.
Thadani is also an alumnus of New York University, and spent his initial
years working in various hotels in New York City. Upon returning to India in 1997,
Thadani founded HVS India and set up the HVS Consulting and Valuation office in
New Delhi. Along with his partner Stephen Rushmore, he owns the HVS Executive
Search, Marketing and Communication businesses of HVS in the region. In 2010,
Thadani’s role was elevated to that of Chairman. Since then Thadani is mainly
focused on providing strategic advice to key clients and being a voice of the hotel
industry. He has also recently taken global responsibility of launching HVS Sustainability Services (Green Hotels) and has opened an office in Miami, Florida. Thadani
also hosts the very successful Hotel Investment Conference – South Asia (HICSA)
since its inception in 2005.
Christopher Tompkins
Senior Vice President - Marketing and Brand Programs
B Hotels & Resorts
Christopher Tompkins is an innovative marketing
professional with diversified experiences spanning
virtually every segment of the travel, hospitality and
entertainment industries. Tompkins began his career as a
professional dancer and choreographer in NYC. Following
Broadway, Off-Broadway and Regional Theatre
performances, he embarked on a new adventure with
Sitmar/ Princess Cruise Lines, where he started as a performer and then held
various onboard positions including Director of Fitness, Director of Shore
Excursions and then Director of Cruise Entertainment. After seven years of
traveling to more than 55 countries – including Central and South America, Europe,
the Mediterranean and Eastern Europe – Tompkins ventured into hospitality,
accepting a post as Convention Services Manager for Carlson Hotels.
Over the past 16 years, Tompkins has evolved into an established corporate
marketing executive, working on the property level and in corporate positions for
Carlson, Hilton, Hard Rock, Starwood, Hotel Investors and The Procaccianti Group.
He has led sales, marketing and public relations efforts for many hotels, including
the grand openings of Hard Rock Hotel & Casino, Gallery One and the largest-ever
new-build W Hotel.
As Senior Vice President - Marketing and Brand Programs for B Hotels &
Resorts, Tompkins excels in the challenges of marketing and continually creating
new brand initiatives and programs for B’s fresh, innovative self-expression of
hospitality in a brand that is on the move.
Rajiv Trivedi
Executive Vice President and Chief Development Officer
La Quinta Management, LLC
Rajiv Trivedi is a senior hotel and franchising executive
with 25 years of experience in the hospitality industry
who is known for his active, dynamic management
style. He is responsible for all facets of franchising,
including sales, services and administration and also
has significant experience in franchising and development outside the hotel industry, with a number of
leading consumer brands. He has spearheaded the growth of the system to 400
franchised properties in his tenure – an unprecedented growth rate in the hotel
industry, and beyond.
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34 th ANNUAL NEW YORK UNIVERSITY
International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
In November 2000, Trivedi joined La Quinta as VP/Franchise Operations,
where he was responsible for designing and implementing the company’s franchising program, managing franchise sales, services, administration and training.
He was promoted to Senior Franchise Development Officer in 2004 and, upon the
acquisition of La Quinta by an affiliate of the Blackstone Group, was promoted to
his current position as Executive Vice President. In February 2009, he was also
named Chief Development Officer.
Trivedi received a Master of Science and a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics from University of Illinois, Chicago.
Thomas R. Trout
Vice President, Architecture and Planning
Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group
Thomas Trout is Vice President of Architecture and
Planning for Carlson Hotels the Americas, a division of
Carlson Hotels Worldwide. Trout, who has more than 25
years experience in planning, budgeting, design and
construction in the hospitality industry, is responsible for
managing the Technical Services department which
oversees the design and construction standards for
Radisson, Country Inn and Suites and Park Inn hotels, as well as managing the company’s project planning and design processes for its owned and managed portfolio.
Before joining Carlson, Trout was Vice President of Design and Construction for Promus Hotel Corporation in Memphis, TN. He was responsible for the
coordination of capital expenditure programs for 275 managed hotels and resorts.
He also oversaw the planning, design and execution of $40 million in conversion
renovations and technical service projects for new building hotels.
Prior to joining Promus Hotel Corp., Trout was Vice President of Design and
Construction for Doubletree Hotels in Phoenix, AZ. He also worked as a project
director for Hyatt Hotels in Chicago, IL, and was principal of his own architectural firm for six years, specializing in restaurant design. Trout graduated from
the Illinois Institute of Technology with a Bachelor’s degree in Architecture and
is a registered architect in the states of Ohio, Arizona and Minnesota. He also is
registered with NCARB.
Lindsey Ueberroth
President
Preferred Hotel Group
Lindsey Ueberroth is President of Preferred Hotel Group
and a member of its Board of Directors. Ueberroth leads
the company’s global growth strategy and oversees its
six distinct brands: Preferred Hotels & Resorts, Preferred
Boutique, Summit Hotels & Resorts, Sterling Hotels,
Sterling DesignSM, and Historic Hotels of America. Prior
to her role as president, Ueberroth served as Executive
Vice President and led efforts to create and implement innovative global
technology solutions for the company, including the redesign and enhancement of
its global booking engine infrastructure. Ueberroth began her career at Preferred
Hotel Group managing global brand strategy, internal technology, and brand
performance. In 2005, she successfully created and launched the company’s
Preferred Boutique brand.
Before joining Preferred Hotel Group, Ueberroth was an account executive
at Ambassadors International, Inc., a global meetings and incentives company.
Prior to that, she was a management consultant at Andersen Consulting (now
Accenture). Ueberroth also serves on the Board of Directors for Historic Hotels of
America. A graduate of Wake Forest University, she is an active member of the U.S.
Travel Association and the Young Presidents’ Organization.
Homi Vazifdar
Managing Director
Canyon Equity LLC
Homi Vazifdar is Chief Executive Officer and Managing
Director of the Canyon Group. The Canyon Group owns
and/or develops ultra-luxury resorts in exotic destinations around the world. The Company currently owns
assets in Europe, North America, Latin America and the
South Pacific. The Company is currently in the process of
developing new resorts in Costa Rica and California.
Canyon’s resorts are managed by marquis brands such as Amanresorts and
Auberge Resorts.
Vazifdar is extremely passionate about the wonderful world of lodging and
over the years has touched almost every aspect of the industry, and worked with
some of the stalwarts in the business. He is a frequent speaker at lodging and
tourism conferences around the world and has over 25 years of multi-faceted
lodging and hospitality experience. Before founding Canyon Equity in 2005, Vazifdar was the Co-Head of Lodging at Banc of America Securities in San Francisco
from 1998 to 2003 where he was involved in numerous high profile M&A and
equity transactions. Prior to that, from 1993 to 1997, Vazifdar was Chief Executive Officer of Bent Severin Associates. From 1983 to 1992, Vazifdar was the Chief
Operating Officer of Feiler Bros. International. After receiving a Bachelor’s degree
in Economics from Loyola College in Madras, India, Vazifdar went to Berkeley,
California in 1972, where he received an M.B.A.
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34 th ANNUAL NEW YORK UNIVERSITY
International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
Kimberly A. Wachen
W. Edward Walter
Partner
Arent Fox LLP
President and Chief Executive Officer
Host Hotels & Resorts
Kimberly A. Wachen is co-Chair of the Arent Fox real
estate group and Chair of the Firm’s Hospitality Industry
Group. Wachen was selected as the leading real estate
lawyer in Washington (Legal Times, December 2008) and
has been rated as a leading real estate lawyer by
Chambers USA (2010, 2011), Legal 500 USA (2011) and
Super Lawyers magazine (2011). Wachen has led
numerous commercial real estate transactions ranging from the purchase and sale
of individual properties to bulk purchases and sales of real estate and loan
portfolios. She has particular expertise in the negotiation of purchase, sale,
development, management and financing agreements for hotel and resort
properties. Wachen also has significant experience in equity participations and
debt financing arrangements for hospitality projects. She recently represented
Marriott in the development of its Edition brand hotels in Manhattan (Clock Tower
Building) and the Seville Beach Hotel in Miami Beach.
W. Edward Walter is the President and Chief Executive
Officer of Host Hotels & Resorts. He joined the company
in 1996 as Senior Vice President for Acquisitions, and
held a variety of positions, including Chief Financial
Officer and Chief Operating Officer. Walter became the
President and Chief Executive Officer in October 2007.
Prior to joining the company, Walter was a partner
with Trammell Crow Residential Company and the President of Bailey Capital Corporation. He serves on the Board of Directors of AvalonBay Communities, Inc. and
is a member of its Audit Committee and Investment and Finance Committee. Walter
is on the board of the Friendship Public Charter School, the largest charter school
system in the District of Columbia, the National Kidney Foundation where he serves
as Chairman, and serves on the Board of Governors, Executive Committee and is
Vice Chairman of the National Association of Real Estate Investment Trusts.
John Wallis
Global Head, Marketing and Brand Strategy
Hyatt Hotels Corporation
John Wallis has served as Global Head of Marketing and
Brand Strategy since November 2008.
Wallis’ career with Hyatt began in 1981. Prior to
his current role, Wallis served as Senior Vice President,
Product and Brand Development since August 2007.
From 2004 through 2007, Wallis served as our Senior
Vice President, Global Asset Management, where he was
responsible for the management of more than 40 Hyatt-owned properties across
North America, Latin America, Europe and Asia. He has also served in a variety
of other management positions, including Senior Vice President of Marketing
and Sales, and Vice President of Marketing for Hyatt International Corporation,
General Manager and Regional Vice President-Gulf States for Hyatt Regency Dubai,
Executive Assistant Manager Food and Beverage for Hyatt Regency Kuwait, Hyatt
Regency Fiji and Hyatt Kingsgate Sydney and various other food and beverage
management positions. A British national, Wallis was educated at Ecole Hotelier De
Lausanne School in Switzerland.
Stuart Ward
Senior International Business Executive, Tourism,
Trade and Investment
Scottish Development International
Stuart Ward’s current role, as Senior International
Business Executive at Scottish Development International, is to identify and support innovative and
commercially attractive investment opportunities which
will boost tourism and help Scotland cement its position
in the global hotel and resort development landscape.
As a result, Ward works closely with developers,
investors and operators to help secure a successful investment and maximize the
opportunities Scotland provides. More recently, Ward has been focusing on
sourcing international finance for hotel and resort development, given the
challenging market in procuring development finance in this area.
Scottish Development International (SDI) is a partnership between the
Scottish Government and its economic development agencies. It works to attract
inward investment and knowledge to Scotland to help the economy grow. As tourism is vital to Scotland, contributing £5.2 billion to Scotland’s economy last year.
This is one of six key sectors which SDI focuses on to ensure that Scotland can
stay ahead of its global competitors.
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34 th ANNUAL NEW YORK UNIVERSITY
International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
Due to space and sustainability, speaker bios have been
edited for brevity. Please consider the environment
before printing this document.
Edward B. Watkins
Jeff Weinstein
Editor
Lodging Hospitality Magazine
Editor-in-Chief
HOTELS Magazine
Edward B. Watkins, Editor of Lodging Hospitality
Magazine, has been covering the lodging industry since
1974, when he joined Lodging Hospitality, a Penton
Media magazine, as an assistant editor. He was named
managing editor in 1976 and editor in 1980. A graduate
of Ohio University, Watkins worked in newspapers before
joining Lodging Hospitality.
Watkins often speaks at hotel industry events, including most recently The
Lodging Conference, the Timeshare & Resort Investment Conference, AAHOA
National Conference and the Hotel Asset Managers Association Conference. He is
a member of the National Association of Real Estate Editors. He also serves as a
member of the advisory committee of the Niagara University College of Hospitality
Administration and the NeoCon Program Advisory Committee.
Jeff Weinstein has been Editor-in-Chief of HOTELS magazine since November 1994. In 1996, he created HOTELS’
Investment Outlook, a quarterly publication for the hotel
investment community. Starting in 1986, Weinstein was
Senior Editor for Restaurants & Institutions, which
covered all aspects of the foodservice industry in the
United States. Weinstein, a five-time winner of the Jesse
H. Neal Award, presented by the American Business Press, is a 1979 Journalism
graduate of Drake University.
William A. Weber
Partner
Hughes Hubbard & Reed LLP
William A. Weber has been a Partner at Hughes Hubbard
& Reed since 1988. His area of practice includes real
estate development and finance, public/private
partnerships, and hospitality/resort development. Weber
is a member of the American College of Real Estate
Lawyers and a Fellow of the American Bar Association.
Weber has worked extensively in real estate development and finance since 1976 and most recently in hotel and resort development,
including public/private partnerships, direct investment in U.S. real estate through
offshore fund structures. He also advises on restructures, workouts and recapitalization of distressed hotel & resort assets. Weber received his B.A. from Stetson
University and a J.D. from the University of Florida School of Law where he was
Editor-in-Chief of the University of Florida Law Review. He was admitted to
practice in the State of Florida in 1976.
Adam F. Weissenberg
Vice Chairman, U.S. Travel, Hospitality & Leisure Leader
Deloitte & Touche LLP
Adam F. Weissenberg is Vice Chairman and Global Leader
of the Travel, Hospitality & Leisure (“THL”) segment at
Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu. Weissenberg also leads the
U.S. Travel, Hospitality & Leisure sector at Deloitte &
Touche LLP.
Weissenberg specializes in serving the THL
industry, where he provides business advisory services
for various segments of the industry. Weissenberg regularly exchanges ideas and
discusses emerging issues with client service teams serving other large, complex
companies, in order to share insights and best practices. He also serves as the
lead client service partner for some of the largest hotel companies in the world.
Weissenberg is widely published and speaks frequently at national industry
conferences and summits, including the New York University International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference. For the NYU Conference, Weissenberg is on
the Executive Planning Committee. He is also a frequent speaker at the Cornell
University School of Hotel Administration, where he serves on the Hotel School
Advisory Board.
Weissenberg is sought after by the media to discuss his insights on industry
trends and issues. He is quoted regularly in national publications including, Forbes.
com, The New York Times, Travel & Leisure, The Wall Street Journal and USA
Today. He is also a frequent guest on Fox Business News, Bloomberg and CNBC.
Weissenberg received a Bachelor of Science from Cornell University in Hotel
and Restaurant Administration, and a Master of Business Administration from
Columbia University where he majored in accounting and finance.
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34 th ANNUAL NEW YORK UNIVERSITY
International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
Jeremy Welter
Paul W. Whetsell
Executive Vice President of Asset Management
Ashford Hospitality Trust
President and Chief Executive Officer
Loews Hotels
Jeremy Welter became Executive Vice President of Asset
Management for Ashford Hospitality Trust in January 2011,
overseeing asset management efforts, including capital
spending and execution for Ashford’s portfolio of 125
hotels. Prior to joining Ashford, Welter served as
Remington Hotels’ Chief Financial Officer. Before joining
Remington in 2005, Welter was an investment banker at
Stephens, where he worked on mergers and acquisitions as well as public and
private capital raises. Before working at Stephens, Welter was part of Bank of
America’s Global Corporate Investment Banking group. Welter graduated summa
cum laude from Oklahoma State University with a Bachelor of Science in Economics. Paul W. Whetsell brings more than 35 years experience in
the hospitality industry to his role as President and Chief
Executive Officer of Loews Hotels. Most recently he
served as a member of the Board of Directors of Virgin
Hotels, providing strategic guidance in its operations and
property acquisition activities. Previously, Whetsell was
President and Chief Executive Officer of CapStar Hotel
Company in Arlington, Virginia. He founded the original CapStar Hotel Company in
1987. It operated primarily as a third party manager of upscale hotels until the
early 1990’s when in partnership with an affiliate of Oak Hill Capital Partners,
CapStar started a fund to acquire hotels. In August 1996, the company listed on
the New York Stock Exchange and continued its strategy of buying upscale hotels
throughout North America. In August 1998, CapStar merged its ownership group
with a Texas based REIT, American General Hospitality, and split its operating
division into a separate company. This unique structure, a paper-clipped REIT, was
the first in the industry. The resulting company became the industry’s third largest
REIT with over 110 hotels and $3 billion in assets, and one of the industry’s largest
operators with over 150 hotels under management. Whetsell was Chairman and
Chief Executive Officer of the REIT MeriStar Hospitality Corporation and the
operating company MeriStar Hotels and Resorts, Inc. In July 2002, MeriStar Hotels
and Resorts, Inc. merged with Interstate Hotels Corporation, creating Interstate
Hotels and Resorts, Inc. Whetsell served as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer
of Interstate until October 2003, and served just as Chairman of the Board until
March 2009.
Whetsell has also served in development and operating capacities for Lincoln
Hotels, a division of Lincoln Property Company and held various positions with
Quality Inns (now Choice Hotels International).
Whetsell is a member of the American Hotel & Lodging Association’s Industry
Real Estate and Financing Advisory Council, and for several years, served as
chairman of the AH&LA and Government Affairs Committee. Whetsell was also a
member of the National Association of Real Estate Investment Trusts (NAREIT) and
in the past served on NAREIT’s Board of Governors. He is a member of the Urban
Land Institute and the Travel Business Roundtable. Whetsell also serves on the
Board of Directors of NVR, Inc., one of the nation’s largest home builders. He is
active with the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation and is a member of its national Board of
Trustees. Whetsell graduated from Davidson College in 1972.
David J. Weymer
Managing Principal, Capital Markets and General Counsel
Noble Investment Group, LLC
David J. Weymer is a Managing Principal and Noble’s
General Counsel with responsibility for overseeing capital
markets, investor relations and legal affairs. Weymer has
a broad and diverse background in real estate finance,
acquisitions and dispositions, and legal matters.
Prior to joining Noble as a partner at the formation
of the Noble Hospitality Fund in early 2007, Weymer was
a Managing Director at Thayer Lodging where he was responsible for securing
approximately $1.8 billion in debt placements, closing $1.7 billion in acquisitions
and leading the successful sale of over $1.8 billion in assets. Previously, Weymer
served as Assistant General Counsel for Prime Retail, a publicly traded outlet mall
developer and Senior Counsel for United States Fidelity & Guaranty Company, with
responsibility for legal matters on a diversified $1 billion real estate portfolio.
Weymer began his career as a real estate attorney for Piper & Marbury with
emphasis on national real estate finance and development transactions. He is a
member of the American Bar Association, Urban Land Institute, and PREA. Weymer
also has affiliations with AHLA Multi Unit Operator Council Committee, Chicago Title
Advisory Board, Parents’ Council Wake Forest University and is a Board Member for
Maryland AAP.
Weymer graduated magna cum laude from Wake Forest University with a
B.A. in History. He also received his J.D., summa cum laude, from the University
of Baltimore.
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34 th ANNUAL NEW YORK UNIVERSITY
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Paul M. Whyte
Lawrence B. Wolfe
Managing Director and Head of Real Estate Investment
Banking, U.S.
Credit Suisse Securities (USA) LLC
Senior Managing Director
Eastdil Secured
Whyte joined Credit Suisse in 2010 from Deutsche Bank,
where he was the Co-Head of Real Estate, Lodging and
Gaming in the United States. His client focus includes
both public and private real estate, lodging and gaming
companies where he provides strategic advice and
capital raising ideas. During his 18 years in investment
banking, he has participated in over $80bn of M&A
transactions and raised over $100bn of capital for notable clients such as
Blackstone ($27bn Hilton and $39bn EOP LBOs), Harrah’s ($26bn LBO and $9.5bn
acquisition of Caesars), MGM Mirage ($9bn Mandalay Bay and $6bn Mirage
acquisitions), Starwood Hotels ($4.2bn portfolio sale) and Wynn Resorts ($450m
IPO and $2.4bn initial capitalization). Whyte holds a B.S. from Purdue University
and an M.B.A. from The University of North Carolina.
Robert Winchester
President and Chief Operating Officer
Waterford Hotel Group, Inc.
Robert Winchester is the President and Chief Operating
Officer of Waterford Hotel Group, Inc. His responsibilities
at Waterford include all aspects of on-going operations
for the firm, including all facets of operating the hotels
currently under management. Additionally, Winchester
develops and maintains relationships with potential
institutional, financial, and individual partners to grow the
company’s third-party management portfolio. Under Winchester’s direction,
Waterford Hotel Group has developed a reputation for delivering on time, within
budget, and exceeding client expectations. Whether the involvement begins at
conception or during operation, the team strives for successful performance and
profitability of each property, while maintaining the highest standards of service
and excellence. His combination of operations, sales, and finance expertise
translates into efficient and optimally profitable results. Winchester joined the
organization in 1990 and has more than 30 years of professional experience in the
hospitality industry, including an extensive background in finance, acquisition, and
disposition. Winchester holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting from the
University of Connecticut.
Lawrence B. Wolfe is a Senior Managing Director and
Partner with Eastdil Secured where he has international
responsibility for the firm’s lodging investment banking
and brokerage businesses. In his 24 year career at
Eastdil Secured, Wolfe has completed over 400 hotel and
resort transactions totaling over $100 billion in proceeds.
The firm continues to focus on advising public and
private owners of resorts and hotels on debt and equity recapitalization options. In
addition to property sales, mortgage brokerage, and sub-debt sales, Eastdil
Secured (through Wells Fargo Securities) was a book-runner on 2011’s major
lodging follow-on offerings and IPO’s.
Eastdil Secured is a full service real estate investment bank, with principle offices in New York and Los Angeles. The firm’s resources include the real
estate investment banking platform of the former Wachovia Securities. Since it’s
founding in 1967, Eastdil Secured has remained true to its mission: the financing, disposition, merger and acquisition of real estate properties and companies.
Eastdil Secured provides its clients with creative solutions, sound strategic advice,
financial counsel and timely execution and placement. Wolfe is a graduate of The
Johns Hopkins University where he holds Economics and Engineering degrees and
the University of Chicago where he holds an M.B.A. in Finance.
R. Mark Woodworth
President
PKF Hospitality Research
R. Mark Woodworth is President of PKF Hospitality
Research, LLC (PKF-HR), an affiliate of PKF Consulting
USA, LLC (PKF/C). Woodworth has over 30 years of
hospitality industry experience, is based in Atlanta and is
responsible for PKF-HR’s national practice. Before
forming PKF-HR in 1999, Woodworth was a Partner and
Industry Chairman of the Hospitality Industry Consulting
practice for Coopers & Lybrand L.L.P., and specialized in the lodging industry. Prior
to that, he was a Senior Principal with Laventhol & Horwath where he focused on
the hospitality industry and was responsible for all lodging and real estate
consulting services in the southeastern United States.
Woodworth has managed and conducted consulting assignments, involving
both the public and private sectors, throughout the U.S. He has worked for the industry’s leading lenders, developers, chains and management companies and has
dealt with all aspects of operations, development and financing. Woodworth has
been qualified as an expert and has testified in litigation and/or bankruptcy matters
in New York, Georgia, Alabama, South Carolina, Kentucky and Texas regarding
hospitality properties.
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34 th ANNUAL NEW YORK UNIVERSITY
International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
Woodworth has been quoted on hospitality issues in such noted publications as The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times,
The Washington Post, Barron’s, USA Today, The Financial Times and numerous
industry publications. Furthermore, Woodworth is a frequent speaker at industry
conferences and is a Dean’s Distinguished Lecturer at Cornell University. He
serves on the Board of Directors of the Atlanta Convention & Visitors Bureau, the
Finance Committee of the United Way of Metropolitan Atlanta as well as the Editorial Review Board of the Cornell Quarterly research journal. He is a member of
the Conference of Business Economists and also completed a three-year term on
the Board of Advisors for the Center for Hospitality Research at Cornell University.
Woodworth holds both a B.S. and Master’s degree from Cornell University’s School
of Hotel Administration. He also served on the faculty of the Center for Professional Development at Cornell for 12 years.
Angela Wu
Revenue Management Trainee
Starwood Hotels and Resorts Worldwide, Inc.
Angela Wu is a recent alumna of the Preston Robert Tisch
Center for Hospitality, Tourism, and Sports Management. During her time as a student, Wu served as the
Professional Development Chair for the NYU Hospitality
Business Society (HBS). In this role, Wu assisted in
coordinating the bi-annual Tisch Center Career Fair, managed the HBS mentorship program, and organized
Shadow Day in conjunction with the Tisch Center Alumni Society. Her work
experiences have been diverse, spanning operations, marketing, sales, revenue
management, and travel research; and Wu has worked in all types of properties,
ranging from a hostel in Barcelona to a luxury boutique hotel in New York City. Wu
is currently working as a Revenue Management Trainee for Starwood Hotels and
Resorts in their Northeast Cluster based in Boston.
Michael J. Zeidel
Partner
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP
Michael J. Zeidel represents investment banks, corporate
clients and private equity firms in a variety of U.S. and
international transactions, including public and private
offerings of equity and debt securities, initial public
offerings, tender offers, exchange offers and consent
solicitations. He also counsels corporate clients across a
variety of industries on an ongoing basis, assisting with
the review and preparation of SEC filings, corporate governance matters and
interactions with security holders, stock exchanges and other regulatory bodies. In
addition, Zeidel regularly speaks at conferences and seminars on a variety of
corporate finance, disclosure and governance-related topics, with a recent
emphasis on the JOBS Act.
Zeidel received a B.A. cum laude from George Washington University and a
J.D. magna cum laude from Syracuse University College of Law.
Meridith B. Zimmerman
Project Manager/Owners Rep
RLJ Lodging Trust
Meridith Zimmerman is a Project Manager with RLJ
Lodging Trust, a 144-Asset Public REIT located in
Bethesda, Maryland with the responsibility of
overseeing annual capital project budgets, due
diligence processes, renovation and conversion project
execution, and contract compliance. She also serves
as the Owner’s Rep in all Brand Compliance issues, and
Design and Construction approvals. While with RLJ, she has effectively raised
the firm’s reputation of quality lodging by introducing strategies, technology, and
the latest industry standards to the forefront of Executive Committee discussions
and decisions.
Prior to joining RLJ, Zimmerman was in the Architecture and Construction
division of Marriott International, The Office of the Architect of the Capitol/Library
of Congress in their interior development department, and at Charles E. Smith
Realty in their facilities design management division. Zimmerman holds a B.A. in
Interior Design from USC and a Masters in Architecture from Catholic University in
Washington, DC.
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34 th ANNUAL NEW YORK UNIVERSITY
International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference
save the date 2013
35 th ANNUAL NEW YORK UNIVERSITY
International Hospitality Industry
Investment Conference
june 2-4, 2013
www.nyu.edu/hospitalityconference
New York Marriott Marquis  NYC
Tisch Center Programs of Study
Master of Science Degrees
ƒƒ Hospitality Industry Studies
ƒƒ Sports Business
ƒƒ Tourism Management
Bachelor of Science Degrees
ƒƒ Hotel and Tourism Management
ƒƒ Sports Management
Certificate and Courses
ƒƒ Meeting, Conference, and Event
Management
Graduate Certificates
ƒƒ Hospitality Industry Studies
ƒƒ Sports Business
ƒƒ Tourism Management
Accelerated Certificates
ƒƒ Hotel Operations
ƒƒ Meeting and Conference Management
ƒƒ Restaurant Operations
ƒƒ Sports Business Operations
To view a range of non-credit
and continuing education
programs and courses, visit:
www.scps.nyu.edu/tischcenter
Due to space and sustainability, speaker bios have been edited for brevity.
Please consider the environment before printing this document.
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