WATG appoints new CEO

January 2009—Mike Seyle is WATG’s new president and chief executive officer. Since 2004 – as vice president and director of business and legal affairs for WATG – Seyle has been responsible for many aspects of the firm’s growth and success.
“Mike Seyle is a smart and inspiring leader who can take the organization to the next level,” said Cynthia Jacobs, a WATG vice president and board member. “He really ‘gets’ the WATG culture, and brings to it strong skills as a team-builder, a problem-solver and a great communicator.”
Seyle also represents WATG in the wider community as an active participant in The American Institute of Architects (AIA) Large Firm Roundtable.
“This is both an exciting opportunity and a humbling responsibility,” said Seyle. “While we live in challenging times and need to be responsive to a changing marketplace, great design, quality work, innovation, and superlative service will never go out of style. Remaining focused on these priorities will help build WATG’s brand as an industry leader well into the future.”
Seyle takes over from Ron Holecek, who was WATG’s president and CEO for the last 16 years. During that time, the firm has grown to over 400 people working from seven offices on projects in 160 countries. Under Holecek’s leadership WATG added strategic consulting, master planning and interior design to its roster of architectural services. In his new capacity with WATG, Holecek will now be working directly with clients and spearheading special projects.
“I have absolute confidence that Mike, with his strong leadership skills and passion for great design, will push WATG to innovate like never before – enabling us to keep setting trends rather than following them,” said Holecek.
Prior to joining WATG, Seyle was vice president at Western Management, LLC, a privately-held retail financial services and insurance agency group in Carlsbad, California, where he was a member of the executive leadership team. Prior to that, he was a partner and vice president at Seltzer Caplan McMahon & Vitek, one of San Diego’s oldest law firms.
Seyle earned an MBA from San Diego State University. He received a JD cum laude from the University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law in Sacramento, California, where he was associate editor of the Law Review. While pursuing his degree, Mike was also a firefighter and paramedic in Modesto, California. He lives in Carlsbad, California with his wife Michelle and their five children.
WATG is the number one hospitality design firm in the world, according to surveys by Hotel Design and Hotel & Motel Management magazines. Hospitality Design magazine’s recent survey of architecture and interior design firms ranked WATG’s corporate culture among the top in the country: best career advancement, best firm philosophy, best client list, best list of projects, and most innovative. Since its founding in 1945, WATG has designed destinations in 160 countries from its offices worldwide. For more information, visit www.watg.com.


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