2017 – 2018 Speakers

Kate Walsh

Speaker: Kate Walsh, Dean

Dr. Kate Walsh was named the seventh dean and E. M. Statler Professor of the School of Hotel Administration on June 16, 2017. She served as interim dean and E. […]

Tricia Taylor

Speaker: Tricia Taylor ’95, Senior Vice President and General Manager

One of America’s legendary oceanfront resort destinations, The Breakers was founded in 1896 by industrialist Henry Flagler on the shores of Palm Beach – a unique location that inspired the […]

Chuck Floyd

Speaker: Chuck Floyd, Global President of Operations

Hyatt Hotels Corporation is a leading global hospitality company with a portfolio of 13 brands and 698 properties in 56 countries. The company was founded in 1957 when Jay Pritzker […]

Susan Sarich

Speaker: Susan Sarich ’91, Founder and Chief Executive Officer

An all-American, home-style bakery offering classic desserts that are baked on-site daily from scratch, SusieCakes aims to “connect through celebration.” All SusieCakes desserts are baked with fresh ingredients without mixes, […]

William McBeath

Speaker: William McBeath, President and Chief Executive Officer

Opened in 2010, The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas is a trendsetting, luxury resort and casino that has pioneered a new kind of hospitality in the Las Vegas market. It features […]

Michael Medzigian

Speaker: Michael Medzigian ’82, Chairman & Managing Partner

Mr. Medzigian is Chairman and Managing Partner of Watermark Capital Partners, LLC, a real estate investment management firm, and President, CEO and a Director of Carey Watermark Investors Inc., and […]

Zachary Shapiro

Speaker: Zachary Shapiro ’05, Director of Operations Reliability, Integrated Operations Center

American Airlines has been a pioneer in the airline industry since its first flight in 1936. Today, American Airlines and American Eagle offer an average of nearly 6,700 flights per […]

Mark Nasr

Speaker: Mark Nasr ’07, Vice President, Loyalty & eCommerce

Air Canada is Canada’s largest airline and carries over 45 million passengers annually. Air Canada’s predecessor, Trans-Canada Air Lines, had its first flight in 1937 and the company has since […]

Grace Leo

Speaker: Grace Leo ’77, Chief Executive Officer

As the daughter of a Hong Kong hotelier, Ms. Grace Leo is no stranger to the hospitality industry. With a distinctive style all her own, Ms. Leo stepped out front […]

George Markantonis

Speaker: George Markantonis, President and Chief Operating Officer

A lifelong hotelier, Mr. George Markantonis began his career as a front desk agent in South Africa at age 20. In the time since, his efforts have been recognized on […]

Aida Mollenkamp

Speaker: Aida Mollenkamp ’02, Founder

A graduate of the School of Hotel Administration, Ms. Aida Mollenkamp is a food and travel expert on a mission to taste the world. In December of 2014, she founded […]

Elizabeth Blau

Speaker: Elizabeth Blau MS ’97, Chief Executive Officer

Ms. Elizabeth Blau is credited with transforming Las Vegas’s culinary scene. Her foodservice career, spanning over 23 years, has allowed Ms. Blau to specialize in restaurant planning and development. Her […]

Michael Barnello

Speaker: Michael Barnello ’87, President & Chief Executive Officer

Michael D. Barnello is President and Chief Executive Officer of LaSalle Hotel Properties (NYSE: LHO) and has been with the company since its IPO in 1998. LaSalle Hotel Properties is […]

Geoff Ballotti

Speaker: Geoff Ballotti, President & Chief Executive Officer

As the President & Chief Executive Officer of Wyndham Hotel Group, Vice Chair of the AHLA board of directors, National Chair of the U.S. Travel Association, and board of director’s […]