The Lodging Conference to honor Arne Sorenson with award

Harry Javer, producer and founder of The Lodging Conference, announced today that Arne Sorenson, the late president & CEO of Marriott International, has been selected posthumously as the recipient of the 2021 Above and Beyond Lifetime Achievement Award. The award will be presented at The Lodging Conference on Sept. 29. The announcement comes just weeks after the launch of the Arne Sorenson Social Impact Leadership Award at The Americas Lodging Investment Summit.

The Above and Beyond Lifetime Achievement Award recognizes an individual who has provided outstanding, life-long contributions to the hospitality industry. Past recipients include Minaz Abji, EVP, Host Hotels & Resorts; Jack DeBoer, chairman, Value Place; Tom Corcoran, president & CEO, TCOR Hotel Partners; Patrick H. Ford, chairman, CEO and founder, Lodging Econometrics and New England Hotel Realty; John Q. Hammons, founder, chairman and CEO, John Q. Hammons Hotels & Resorts; Michael Leven, chairman and CEO, Georgia Aquarium and former president and COO, Las Vegas Sands Corp.; Joe McInerney, president & CEO, McInerney Hospitality International; Gary Mendell, CEO & Founder, Shatterproof; Leland C. Pillsbury, co-chairman & CEO, Thayer Lodging Group; Hasmukh (H.P.) Rama, CEO & chairman of the Board, JHM Hotels; Randy Smith, chairman and founder, STR; Jonathan M. Tisch, co-chairman of the board and a member of the Office of the President of Loews Corporation, and chairman and CEO of its subsidiary, Loews Hotels & Co.

Arne Sorenson joined Marriott in 1996 and held a number of positions before serving as president and COO. He was elected to Marriott’s board of directors in 2011. In 2012, he became the third CEO in Marriott’s history, a position he held until his passing in February 2021, and was the first person to hold the post without the Marriott family name. 

Related: Industry celebrates life, legacy of Arne Sorenson

Sorenson led the acquisition of Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide in 2016. An outspoken corporate leader, Sorenson advocated for environmental sustainability, human rights, diversity and inclusion. Under his tenure, Marriott International was recognized extensively, including by Fortune in 2020 as one of the World’s Most Admired Companies and by Diversity Inc. as one of the Top 50 Companies for Diversity. In 2019, Sorenson was named CEO of the Year by Chief Executive magazine and was placed on Forbes’ list of America’s Most Innovative Leaders and Barron’s list of World’s Best CEOs.
Sorenson was active on multiple boards. He joined the Microsoft board of directors in November 2017. He was also a member of the board of directors of the Business Roundtable, serving as chair of its Health and Retirement Committee, co-chair of its COVID-19 Taskforce and as a member of its Special Committee on Racial Equity and Justice. He served on the board of trustees for The Brookings Institution and the board of directors for The Special Olympics and The Warrior-Scholar Project.

“Arne was one of the most caring, thoughtful and innovative leaders of our lifetime. He loved the hotel industry and is deeply missed by friends, colleagues and associates around the world,” said Javer. “Arne’s optimism, advocacy and inclusiveness lifted the entire hospitality community and made all of us better. With heavy hearts, we invite you to join us this September as we celebrate Arne’s legacy.”