AH&LA unveils 2020 leadership, welcomes Choice

Jon E. Bortz
Jon E. Bortz, chairman, president and CEO of Pebblebrook Hotel Trust, was named chair of the American Hotel & Lodging Association's 2020 board of directors. Photo credit: Pebblebrook Hotel Trust
The American Hotel & Lodging Association today unveiled its 2020 officers, board of directors and executive committee and welcomed Choice Hotels International into membership. Jon E. Bortz, chairman, president and CEO of Pebblebrook Hotel Trust, was named chair of the board, and Mark Hoplamazian, president/CEO of Hyatt Hotels Corp., vice chair.

Bortz succeeds Geoff Ballotti, president/CEO of Wyndham Hotels & Resorts, who has served as chair for the past year and becomes immediate past chair.

Justin Knight, president/CEO of Apple Hospitality REIT, will continue as secretary/treasurer. Greg Juceam, president/COO of G6 Hospitality, joined as chair of the board of trustees.

“I could not be prouder to be a part of this amazing industry, and I am honored to serve as chair of AHLA during such an exciting time,” Bortz said in a statement. “Not only has AHLA reached record membership, we’re also leading the way on important issues such as human trafficking, safety and security, and investing in our workforce. From city halls to the halls of Congress, we’re advancing our industry’s legislative priorities so that we can continue to grow and thrive. I’m excited to build on this momentum and achieve even more success for our collective industry in the future.”

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The AH&LA ended 2019 representing a record 3.2 million U.S. hotel rooms. With the addition of Choice, AH&LA now claims to count the 10 largest hotel companies as members.

“We are excited for the depth of experience that our board brings to the table as we move our policy agenda forward,” Chip Rogers, president/CEO of the AH&LA, said in a statement. “With Choice on board, we are stronger than ever. We are grateful to our officers and board members who volunteer their time and energy to ensure that AHLA is successful and represents the hotel industry with one unified voice both in and outside Washington, D.C. As we enter a pivotal election year, it’s more important than ever that our industry comes together to underscore our role in building strong communities in every Congressional district.”

The AH&LA welcomed five new members to its executive committee, which serves as the association’s core governance body and guides its policy agenda:

  • Kevin Jacobs, CFO, Hilton
  • David Kong, president/CEO, Best Western
  • John Arabia, president/CEO, Sunstone Hotel Investors
  • Tom Baltimore, chairman of the board, president and CEO, Park Hotels & Resorts
  • John Belden, chairman/CEO, Davidson Hotels & Resorts

New members of the board of directors appointed to two-year terms in 2020 are:

  • Heather McCrory, CEO, North & Central America, Accor
  • Rena Reiss, EVP/general counsel, Marriott International
  • Simone Wu, SVP, general counsel, corporate secretary and external affairs, Choice Hotels International
  • Al Patel, president, Baywood Hotels
  • Mehul Patel, chairman/CEO, NewcrestImage
  • Joseph Bojanowski, president, PM Hotel Group
  • James Carroll, president/CEO, Crestline Hotels & Resorts
  • W. Chris Green, president/CEO, Chesapeake Hospitality
  • Michael Heaton, president, Waterford Hotel Group
  • Bakulesh “Buggsi” Patel, president, BHG Hotels
  • Tarun Patel, principal, Pacific Hospitality Company
  • Ron Vlasik, COO, Hostmark Hospitality Group
  • Scott Steilen, president/CEO, Sea Island Company
  • George A. Kalogridis, president, segment development and enrichment, Disney Parks, Experiences and Products
  • Steve Warlich, owner/GM, Best Western Plus Clocktower Inn

AH&LEF Appoints Board of Trustees Leadership

The AH&LA’s charitable giving arm, the American Hotel & Lodging Education Foundation, also revealed its 2020 boards of trustees’ new leaders. Greg Juceam, president/COO of G6 Hospitality, will lead as chairman with Tom Bardenett, EVP of asset management for RLJ Lodging Trust, as vice chairman.

“I am honored to serve as chair of this dynamic foundation at such a pivotal moment,” Juceam said in a statement. “Against the backdrop of a labor market that is the tightest it has been in 50 years, the foundation can and should be a workforce solution for the entire industry. Whether it is expanding the Empowering Youth Program to new markets, adding new apprenticeship programs, or providing a million dollars in scholarships, the foundation continues to innovate and provide resources to help attract and retain individuals into the industry for life-long careers.”

Juceam succeeds Dave Johnson, president/CEO of Aimbridge Hospitality, who served as chair for the past two years.

New members appointed to two-year terms in 2020 are:

  • Barry Bloom, president/COO of Xenia Hotels & Resorts
  • Daniel Hansen, president/CEO of Summit Hotel Properties
  • Harshil Patel, VP of Champion Hotels
  • Tricia Primrose, global chief communications and public affairs officer of Marriott International
  • Joy Rothschild, chief human resources officer for Omni Hotels & Resorts.

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