HOSPITALITY PEOPLE IN THE NEWS

Robert Katz is the new CEO and Joe R. Michelotto is the new board chairman of Vail Resorts. They succeed former chairman and CEO Adam Aron. Katz was Vail's Lead Director, while Michelotto was CEO of Ralcorp Holdings and serves as its vice chairman.

Financial advisor Alex Lieblong was elected to the board of directors of Lodgian. Lieblong founded Key Colony Fund and is a principal of Lieblong & Associates.

Hilton Hotels Corp. named Jim Holthouser senior vice president of brand management for Embassy Suites Hotels, returning him to the brand he helped develop in the 1990s. Succeeding Holthouser as senior vice president of brand management for Homewood Suites by Hilton is Rebecca Wyatt. She was senior VP of electronic distribution and customer relationship management.

In his new role as regional vice president, extended stay development, Dan Couture oversees the strategic growth of Choice Hotels International's MainStay Suites and Suburban brands in North America and the Caribbean. He had been in charge of Choice's franchise administration and property conversion department.

Appointments at Rosewood Hotels & Resorts include James McBride to regional vice president, Ralph Aruzza to vice president of sales and Andres Araya to managing director of Las Ventanas at Paraiso, A Rosewood Resort, in Los Cabos, Mexico.

Mark Lewis was named chief financial officer at Sivica Investments. The Arthur Andersen alumnus comes from Paramount Group, a New York company where he handled nearly $3 billion in financings.

Realstar Hospitality President and COO Irwin Prince is the new chair of the Hotel Association of Canada's board of directors. As head of Realstar, the Toronto man oversees the master franchising of Novotel, Studio 6, Motel 6 and Days Inn in Canada. He has served on the HAC board since February 2001.

Doug Housley is the new general manager of the 277-room Four Seasons Hotel San Francisco. The Four Seasons veteran comes to San Francisco from a similar position at the Four Seasons Hotel Cairo.

Her work in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina helped executives of the Hilton Jackson (MS) name Sous Chef Ann Washington as Hilton Jackson Employee of the Year. During Katrina, she worked for 48 hours straight to help evacuees and other guests, preparing hot food and meals by flashlight because the hotel was without power.

Winegardner & Hammons recently appointed Embassy Suites veteran Brad Swales as general manager of the Embassy Suites Hotel Lexington, a recently upgraded property located near the University of Kentucky, Toyota Manufacturing and Lexmark.

Gordon Slatford is the new general manager of the Tides Inn in Irvington, VA. A British transplant who has run luxury resorts in Bermuda and Lake Placid, NY, Slatford succeeds Larry McAfee.

The Minnesota Hotel & Lodging Association named Jim Waldvogel of the Crowne Plaza Northstar Hotel in downtown Minneapolis Hotelier of the Year. The Minnesota Restaurant Association named longtime Lake Elmo Inn chef John Schlitz its 2006 Restaurateur of the Year. They are the first such honorees of the associations, and both were feted at a Feb. 20 fund-raising event in Minneapolis.

Appointments at NYLO Hotels include Patrick O'Neil as senior vice president of operations and David Klein as general counsel. NYLO is a new loft-style, mid-priced boutique chain.

New general manager of the Holiday Inn Ventura Beach Resort in southern California is Douglas Wood. He previously held a similar post at the Crowne Plaza in San Jose, CA.

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