Hospitality People In The News

Choice Hotels International accelerated its succession plan in late June when it installed Stephen P. Joyce as chief executive officer. He succeeds Charles A. Ledsinger, Jr., who remains non-executive vice chairman of the franchise company's board of directors.

Temple H. Weiss succeeded Robert Harshbarger as executive vice president and chief financial officer of La Quinta. Harshbarger retired in May. Weiss, who joined La Quinta in 2001, spearheaded its recent $450-million expansion program.

Arthur L. Buser was appointed president of Sunstone Hotel Investors effective July 21. By next July 1, he will also be appointed chief executive officer. In the meantime, Bob Alter will remain CEO and executive chairman of the Sunstone board of directors. After the transition period, Alter will retain only the second title.

Hospitality marketing legend Mike Dimond died June 23 following a heart attack. The Lima, OH native was 67; he retired from the Broadmoor, where he was senior vice president of sales and marketing, in 2006. Active in numerous professional organizations, he was a member of the Hospitality Sales and Marketing Association International's hall of fame. Among his signal achievements: branding and positioning Opryland Hotel Convention Center to put Nashville on the map as a convention destination.

Hospitality expert Bjorn Hanson has joined the full-time faculty of the Preston Robert Tisch Center for Hospitality, Tourism and Sports Management at New York University's School of Continuing and Professional Studies. Hanson will be a clinical associate professor teaching hospitality and tourism starting this fall. He comes to the Tisch center from PricewaterhouseCoopers, where he headed the hospitality and leisure practice.

Robert J. Lowe Jr. was named chief executive officer of Lowe Hospitality Group. He joined the organization in 1992 and was name president last year.

Stephanie Coleman Linnartz was named senior vice president, global sales, Marriott International. She reports to Amy McPherson, Marriott' s EVP, global sales and marketing. Linnartz, who grew up in the hotel business, joined Marriott in 1997.

IT specialist Barry Hughes was promoted to senior vice president, distribution and marketing, Red Lion Hotels Corp. The former VP of distribution and marketing reports to Anupam Narayan, Red Lion Hotels president and chief executive officer.

Global Hyatt Corp. appointed Harmit Singh as chief financial officer. He comes to Hyatt from Yum! Brands, where he was senior vice president and CFO. Yum! Is the parent company of such global food brands as KFC, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell.

Robert J. Micklash joined Extended Stay Hotels as chief operating officer. He comes to the mid-priced extended-stay brand from a similar position at Concord Hospitality Enterprises Co.

Hospitality veteran William Gant was named general manager of the 229-room Renaissance Raleigh (NC) in North Hills, set to open in November. He moves to the Raleigh hotel from the Renaissance Meadowlands, NJ, where he was assistant general manager.

Intrawest Chief Executive Officer William Jensen and President Brian Collins have been appointed to the board of the experiential destination resort company. Jensen joined Intrawest as CEO from Vail Resorts in January; Collins was principal and founder of Colgate Development.

Leslie Menichini has been promoted to vice president of sales & marketing at Rosen Hotels & Resorts convention hotels, a new position at the Orlando company. She was Rosen Shingle Creek's sales and marketing director.

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