Last updated: 11:00 PM ET, Fri July 29 2016

Welcome Aboard: New Hires and Promotions for July 29, 2016

People | Barry Kaufman | July 29, 2016

Welcome Aboard: New Hires and Promotions for July 29, 2016

Hiltons of Chicago Appoints Joshua M. Levine Director of Sales

Hiltons of Chicago are pleased to announce the appointment of Joshua M. Levine as director of sales for Hiltons of Chicago Business Travel Sales Complex. In his new role, Levine will oversee the hotels’ Business Travel Team and direct pricing strategy, property initiatives and guest recognition programs among other functions for Hilton Chicago, Palmer House, Drake Hotel, Embassy Suites Chicago Downtown Magnificent Mile, Hilton O’Hare, & Hilton Rosemont. 

Most recently, Levine was as the assistant director of sales for Hiltons of Chicago. Prior experience includes serving as area senior sales manager for Hiltons of Chicago and director of rooms for Eldridge and Oread Hotel in Lawrence, Kansas.

TJM Properties Names Tiffany Gallagher General Manager of The Crowne Plaza Syracuse

TJM Properties, a leading Florida-based real estate and hospitality company, has named Tiffany Gallagher general manager of its newest hotel property, The Crowne Plaza Syracuse. The appointment is part of TJM's ongoing expansion into the area of hospitality management. The company has purchased three new hotels in the past eight months in Central New York, Pennsylvania and Mississippi and appointed seven new general managers, sales executives, financial controllers and specialists in the area of human resources, engineering and information technology.

Prior to her appointment, Gallagher was general manager of Syracuse's largest hotel and conference center complex, including two hotels, The Holiday Inn and Staybridge Suites Conference Center. She began her hotel career as director of Sales & Catering at the Holiday Inn Syracuse/Liverpool. In 2009, she was appointed general manager of the Holiday Inn Ithaca in downtown Ithaca, NY, a demanding market serving Cornell University, Ithaca College and the New York Finger Lakes Wine and State Park Region.  

Loews Hotels Appoints Alinio Azevedo As Vice President, Acquisitions And Development

Loews Hotels has announced the appointment of Alinio Azevedo as vice president, acquisitions and development. A seasoned veteran with 20 years of industry experience, Azevedo oversees expansion of Loews Hotels & Resorts, Loews Regency, and the OE Collection brands via acquisition of existing assets and development of new projects in the U.S. and select international markets.

Azevedo joined Loews Hotels from Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts, where as vice president of development, he was responsible for leading brand expansion in Latin America, the Caribbean, and North America. Along the way, he opened and staffed the company’s Miami development office, creating a pipeline for 12 projects and bringing the brand into key emerging markets in the region.

The Kimpton Muse Hotel Appoints Bill Babis as New General Manager

The newly renovated Kimpton Muse Hotel is pleased to announce the appointment of Bill Babis as the new general manager. Babis will oversee all hotel operations including guest relations, meetings and restaurant operations. Babis brings a wealth of industry and brand knowledge to the hotel as he has been part of the Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants family for over a decade.

Babis previously held the title of general manager for Kimpton 70 Park Avenue Hotel where he oversaw extensive renovations and hotel upgrades as well as improving the hotel’s Trip Advisor ranking by 80 points in six months. Prior to Kimpton 70 Park Avenue, Babis served as the general manager of Kimpton Onyx Hotel, located in Boston, Massachusetts. His first major role with Kimpton was at the 236 room Kimpton Hotel Marlowe in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

JW Marriott Chicago Appoints Keshia Scott As The New Destination Sales Executive

JW Marriott Chicago announces the appointment of Keshia Scott as destination sales executive. In this position, Scott oversees booking group events to drive group sales and customer loyalty. Having begun her career with Marriott in 2007 at the Renaissance Nashville, Keshia’s new role with the JW Marriott Chicago team marks a return home for the native Chicagoan.

Since beginning her career with Marriott, Keshia has showcased her inherent, hospitable nature and passion for sales across the country and garnered invaluable experience with many hotel teams. In 2009, Scott was a Business Developer at the Orlando Airport Marriott, tasked with uncovering new business for the hotel, where she continued to deliver. In 2012, she joined the Marriott Mid-Atlantic regional sales office, exceeding her goals in 2012 and 2013, proving that she was sought after talent. Keshia most recently was a part of the pre-opening team at Hyatt Regency Tysons Corner Center where she served as the corporate group sales manager.

Travel and Tourism Research Association (ttra) Announces New President and Executive Board

 Travel and Tourism Research Association (ttra) the leading association for travel and tourism research announces the installation of its 2016/2017 Executive Officers.

ttra’s executive board members serve one-year terms from June to June, commencing at the Association’s annual international conference each summer. This year’s Officers and Board of Directors were appointed on June 16, 2016, at ttra’s 47th Annual International Conference in Vail, Colorado.

Officers include President, Susan Bruinzeel; 1st Vice President, Marion Joppe; 2nd Vice President, Scott Russell; Treasurer, John Markham; and Chairman, Jeffrey Eslinger.

Susan Bruinzeel, President, serves Senior Director, Planning and Research, San Diego Tourism Authority.

Marion Joppe, 1st Vice President, serves as Professor, University of Guelph, School of Hospitality and Tourism Management.

Scott Russell, 2nd Vice President, serves as Director of the Research Center, Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority.

John Markham, Treasurer, serves as President, Markham & Associates.

Jeffrey Eslinger, Chairman, serves as Senior Director, Client Insights, D.K. Shifflet and Associates Ltd.

Kimpton Hotel Monaco Baltimore Inner Harbor Appoints Jennifer Lewis As Director Of Sales And Marketing

Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants is pleased to announce director of sales and marketing Jennifer Lewis to the executive team at Kimpton Hotel Monaco Baltimore Inner Harbor. A hospitality industry veteran, Lewis brings over 25 years of experience to the hotel’s senior leadership team.

Lewis joins the Kimpton Hotel Monaco Baltimore team from the San Francisco Bay Area, where she was most recently the area director of sales and marketing for Hilton Hotels, overseeing two hotels with just under 700 guest rooms and more than 15 employees under her care.

Accorhotels Appoints Kevin Frid As Chief Operating Officer For North & Central America

Global hospitality leader AccorHotels is pleased to announce the appointment of Kevin Frid as chief operating officer for North & Central America. As a key leader within the company, Frid’s position is one of the first senior management appointments since the recent acquisition of FRHI Hotels & Resorts (FRHI) and its three prestigious luxury hotel brands: Raffles, Fairmont and Swissôtel.

Frid, an accomplished hotelier with an extensive hospitality background spanning more than 30 years, most recently served as President, Americas for FRHI Hotels & Resorts. Prior to joining FRHI’s predecessor in 2000, Frid spent 18 years with Canadian-based Delta Hotels in various general manager and operations roles including the position of senior vice president, operations.

Olivier Zambaux promoted to director of banquets at the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Hotel

Olivier Zambaux has been promoted to director of banquets at the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Hotel, overseeing all banquet operations for the property featuring 329,000 square feet of meeting space.

Zambaux has been with the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Hotel for more than 11 years, previously serving as the hotel’s assistant director of banquets. Prior to that role, he was the general manager of Shula’s Steak House.

Zambaux hails from Sainte Menehould, France, and is a certified sommelier. In addition to his banquet duties, he is also an instructor for the hotel’s sommelier preparation class, training future sommeliers. He shares his knowledge with guests annually teaching a Champagne seminar at the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Food & Wine Classic.

He is a graduate of the University of Reims, France.

The Graham Georgetown Names Mark Namdar As New General Manager

 The Graham Georgetown today announced the appointment of Mark Namdar as general manager of the popular boutique hotel located in the heart of Georgetown. With over 25 years of hospitality experience, he will manage all sales, marketing and operational aspects of the hotel.

Namdar was most recently the general manager at the Westin Tysons Corner. While there, he successfully enhanced the guest experience and implemented processes that significantly increased revenues without compromising quality.

Previously, Namdar was the regional director of operations-Mid Atlantic for Hersha Hospitality where he oversaw the daily operations of 12 full service hotels throughout DC, MD, VA and NC.

Gonzalez Named Chief Executive Officer Unique Vacations Group

Effective immediately, Tammy Gonzalez will become chief executive officer of Unique Vacations Group, the worldwide representative of the brands of Sandals Resorts International.  In this capacity, Gonzalez will continue to lead Unique Vacations, but with an expanded portfolio of direction and responsibility for all divisions of Unique Vacations Group.

Gonzalez joined Unique Vacations in 1985, rising through the ranks to her most recent position as executive vice president. During her tenure, she introduced new marketing initiatives, spearheaded innovative agent education programs, ushered in technological advances and developed strategic revenue models that enhanced profitability.

Michael Shin Appointed General Manager Of The Intercontinental Samui Baan Taling Ngam Resort

Michael Shin has just been appointed general manager of the InterContinental Samui Baan Taling Ngam Resort. Mr. Shin previously held the post of project director, luxury & lifestyle at IHG's headquarters in Singapore. He was part of InterContinental's True Luxury team, which is responsible for introducing new high-end services and standards of customer care bearing the InterContinental stamp.

Shin has 16 years of experience in the field of hospitality, hotel sector consulting, business development and finance in the United States, South Korea and Singapore. This has given him an in-depth understanding of all aspects of the day-to-day management of a resort, as well as of how to grow resorts as businesses and brands.

Outrigger Enterprises Group Appoints Two Vice Presidents

Outrigger Enterprises Group has announced the appointment of two vice presidents to its executive team. Bitsy Kelley is vice president, corporate relations, and Monica Salter is vice president, corporate communications.

Kelley has been vice president corporate communications since 2013. Prior, she hosted her own television show, “Outdoor GPS,” was radio host of “Bitsy Kelley Outdoors,” and also television host of “America’s Outdoor Journal” on the Outdoor Channel. She also served as director of brand and business development for OHANA Hotels and Resorts.

Salter joins Outrigger from Bennet Group Strategic Communications where she was senior vice president providing counsel to Outrigger for the past eight years. Her career history includes public relations director for Hotel Lanai, communications manager for XTERRA’s International trail run series and assistant marketing director for the University of Hawaii athletics department.

W South Beach Appoints George Adel As Director Of Revenue Management

W South Beach, the iconic luxury lifestyle hotel located in the heart of South Beach, today announced the appointment of George Adel as director of revenue management.  Adel will lead all top-line generating efforts for W South Beach, including channel distribution, pricing and strategy development for all segments.

Adel is a strategic and innovative revenue director bringing more than 13 years of experience in luxury hotels across the world to W South Beach, as a Starwood veteran who ventured into the hospitality industry at Sheraton Soma Bay Resort on the coast of Egypt’s famed Red Sea. He will be instrumental in achieving targeted goals and objectives for the South Beach property, playing a vital role in driving maximum revenue to the hotel. 

Adel has managed the revenue for multiple hotels around the globe, including Seychelles and Qatar.  Other notable hotels that Adel has led the revenue efforts for include Le Meridien Dahab Resort, Le Meridien Fisherman’s Cove, Le Meridien Barbarons and the five-star W Doha Hotel & Residences.  W South Beach is his first U.S. endeavor. 

Global Business Expansion Veteran David Becker Appointed CEO of Attract China

Attract China is pleased to announce that David Becker has joined the company known as the “Gateway to the Chinese Traveler” as chief executive officer to lead the organization’s expansion plans.  The announcement is aligned with the launch of Attract China’s new travel website for Chinese travelers, or “Happy Travels.”

A proven expert in growing companies, Becker is known for creating innovative programs that have advanced and/or re-engineered businesses, significantly increasing their market share and revenues.     

Becker will be responsible for setting and driving Attract China’s strategic vision as it advances on its expansion path while overseeing the day-to-day operations of the company, including ongoing product development, quality control initiatives, and business relations with suppliers, concierge groups and travel agents.

Rosewood Sand Hill Appoints Danny Silva As Spa Director

Danny Silva has been appointed as spa director of Rosewood Sand Hill in Menlo Park, CA. Mr. Silva joins Rosewood Sand Hill with more than thirteen years of experience working in spa, fitness and hospitality management. In his new role, Mr. Silva will oversee all areas of wellness at Rosewood Sand Hill, including the hotel’s Forbes Four-Star ranked Sense, A Rosewood Spa as well as the property’s state-of-the-art fitness center and programming.

Silva joins Rosewood Sand Hill following his most recent position as Director of Spa and Fitness at the Crescent Hotel in Dallas, Texas.  Previously, he held spa director positions at Diamante, a mixed residential resort in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico and Glen Ivy Hot Springs, one of the largest and oldest spas in the United States located in Corona, CA. 

Visit Mississippi Gulf Coast Announces New Team Members

The regional destination marketing organization charged with promoting tourism within Hancock, Harrison and Jackson counties in Mississippi announced its newest team members this week.

Ari Strutton joins as destination services coordinator, supporting the organization by enhancing group experiences and by providing support for all sales efforts.

Kristen Livingston serves as leisure group sales manager, and her main role includes educating tour operators about the area and what they can experience when visiting. 

Finally, Cameron George joins the team as national sales manager. George will be assisting the Sales Team by coordinating programs that will showcase the area as a desirable and valued meeting location to a variety of meeting and event planners.

Lindblad Expeditions Appoints Craig Felenstein As Chief Financial Officer

Lindblad Expeditions, a global provider of expedition cruises and adventure travel experiences, announced today it has named Craig Felenstein as its Chief Financial Officer.  He will join Lindblad on Sept.  6, 2016.   Felenstein brings a long history of leadership positions in a wide range of public companies, most recently serving as the senior vice president of investor relations and strategic finance at Shutterstock, since March 2015, where he oversaw all interaction with the investment community while leading the financial planning and analysis and corporate development functions.  Prior to Shutterstock, he was at Discovery Communications, LLC, from May 2008 to March 2015, serving in various management roles, including executive vice president of investor relations, where he was responsible for building and directing the investor relations function.  At the same time, he was part of the executive team for several of Discovery’s businesses including serving as the chief financial officer of digital, chief financial officer of US Network Revenue and chief financial officer of Animal Planet, overseeing all financial activity and helping to drive the strategy for each operating unit.  Prior to Discovery Communications, he held senior positions at News Corporation, Viacom Inc., and Arthur Andersen & Co.

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