Industry Update
Press Release18 March 2009

AH&LA Honors Members With State Leadership Awards

Hospitality Leaders from Around the Nation Honored in Washington D.C.

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American Hotel & Lodging Association (AH&LA)

Washington , D.C | The American Hotel & Lodging Association (AH&LA) announced the winners of the 2009 State Leadership Awards yesterday during the first day of the association's annual Legislative Action Summit (LAS). These awards, formerly known as the Most Valuable Volunteer Awards, were created in 1998 to honor standout volunteers who help implement and strengthen programs spearheaded by both AH&LA and its partner state associations.

"It's with much pride that we honor these individuals who've dedicated countless hours to improving both the local and national hospitality communities," said AH&LA president/CEO Joseph A. McInerney, CHA. "Their drive and leadership strengthen the power and impact of our associations and make the industry better for both our employees and our guests."

The awards were presented to the following:

  • Arizona Hotel & Lodging Association
    Greg Bryan, General Manager, Best Western Grand Canyon Squire Inn – Grand Canyon, AZ
  • Arkansas Hospitality Association
    Jed Bullock, Owner, Best Western Eureka Inn – Eureka Springs, AR
  • California Hotel & Lodging Association
    Jim Beazley, Owner, The Beazley House – Napa Valley, CA
  • Colorado Hotel & Lodging Association
    Navin Dimond, CEO, Stonebridge Companies – Englewood, CO
  • Georgia Hotel & Lodging Association
    John Weit, Area General Manager, Marriott Atlanta Airport – College Park, GA
  • Illinois Hotel & Lodging Association
    Robert Habeeb, President, First Hospitality Group – Rosemont, IL
  • Iowa Lodging Association
    Rick Funke, General Manager, Sheraton West Des Moines – Clive, IA
  • Maryland Hotel & Lodging Association
    Patrick Leary, General Manager, Fairfield Inn/Hospitality Partners – Bethesda, MD
  • Montana Innkeepers Association
    Sandra Johnson-Thares, CHA, General Manager/Co-Owner, O'Haire Motor Inn – Great Falls, MT
  • New York State Hospitality & Tourism Association
    John C. Tsunis, Chairman/CEO, Long Island Hotels LLC – Hauppauge, NY
  • North Carolina Restaurant & Lodging Association
    Sterling Webster, Partner and General Manager, Hilton Garden Inn – Kitty Hawk, NC
  • Oklahoma Hotel & Lodging Association
    John Williams, General Manager, Skirvin Hilton Hotel – Oklahoma City, OK
  • Oregon Lodging Association
    Jim Kinney, General Manager, Seventh Mountain Resort – Bend, OR
  • Pennsylvania Tourism and Lodging Association
    William D. Kohl, CHA, CFBE, President, Harrisburg Hotel Corporation – Harrisburg, PA
  • Rhode Island Hospitality & Tourism Association
    Mark Gervais, General Manager, The Hotel Viking – Newport, RI
  • Tennessee Hospitality Association
    Dee Lundy, Owner, Lundy and Associates – Knoxville, TN
  • Virginia Hospitality & Travel Association
    Chris Canavos, CHA, Owner, Country Inn & Suites – Williamsburg, VA
  • Wisconsin Innkeepers Association
    Mark Johnson, Vice President and General Manager, Best Western Milwaukee Airport Hotel & Conference Center – Milwaukee, WI
  • Wyoming Lodging & Restaurant Association
    Ken Patel, Owner, Comfort Inn Laramie – Laramie, WY
Award recipients are determined by AH&LA's partner state associations. For more details on each 2009 State Leadership Award winner, please visit the AH&LA Volunteer Webpage . For pictures of the award winners, please contact Jessica Soklow at (202) 289-3153 or at [email protected] .

Serving the hospitality industry for nearly a century, AH&LA is the sole national association representing all sectors and stakeholders in the lodging industry, including individual hotel property members, hotel companies, student and faculty members, and industry suppliers. Headquartered in Washington, D.C., AH&LA provides members with national advocacy on Capitol Hill, public relations and image management, education, research and information, and other value-added services to provide bottom line savings and ensure a positive business climate for the lodging industry. Partner state associations provide local representation and additional cost-saving benefits to members.

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