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  AH&LA Sets Agenda for Summer Summit
 June 23 - 24, 2009 in Chicago


Hospitality Leaders to Develop Economic Recovery Strategies, Future AH&LA Initiatives, and
Recognize Outstanding Hotel Properties and Employees



Washington, D.C., May 6, 2009— Programming during the American Hotel & Lodging Association’s (AH&LA) fourth annual Summer Summit, held at the Hilton Chicago, will offer attendees insight for hospitality business development, networking with diverse groups of industry professionals, and opportunity to shaping future AH&LA initiatives.  Featured programming includes a keynote presentation from noted economist Geoffrey Colvin, additional economical foresight from industry insiders at the Lodging Industry Summit, new events and programs coordinated by AH&LA’s Under 30 Gateway and Women In Lodging (WIL) Executive Council, and the annual Stars of the Industry Awards ceremony.

Conference educational programming will primarily address the current and future states of the economy as they relate to hoteliers.  Keynote speaker Geoffrey Colvin, FORTUNE magazine’s senior editor at large and one of the world’s most respected financial journalists, will present actionable strategies businesses should enact now to put themselves in a strong financial position once the downturn passes.  Colvin’s insight will be supported by valuable fiscal, demographic, and forecasting data during the Lodging Industry Summit, with expert panelists including Patrick Ford, president, Lodging Econometrics; George Harmon, president, D.K. Shifflet & Associates; Mark Lomanno, president, Smith Travel Research; and Mark Woodworth, president, PKF Hospitality Research.. 

Starting off the Summit, AH&LA’s Under 30 Gateway will host its first Working the Gate Reception, the kick-off for the newly-formed Illinois Under 30 Chapter.  The event on Tuesday, June 23, from 8:00 – 10:00 p.m. at the Hotel Monaco, will feature prominent hotel industry guest speakers, a reception, and plenty of networking opportunities.  Admission is $10 for AH&LA Gateway members and $15 for nonmembers, and advance registration is recommended. 

Closing the conference will be a Hospitality Career Day hosted by AH&LA’s Women In Lodging (WIL) Executive Council and nonprofit Dress for Success, designed to guide disadvantaged women into successful careers in lodging.  Chicago-based WIL CONNECT members will host a panel outlining the diverse career paths in hospitality, conduct sessions on building interviewing skills and professional image, and pair up with a Dress for Success client for mock interviews.  The event is followed by exclusive luncheon for WIL CONNECT members and the WIL Executive Council, providing an intimate setting for networking with top female executives from around the country.

The annual Stars of the Industry Awards, which honor outstanding lodging employees and properties, welcomes a new addition to its roster this year: the Stevan Porter Emerging Hospitality Leader of the Year Award, honoring an exceptional hospitality employee younger than 30 years of age.  Annual awards will also be presented to notable hotel employees, managers, and general managers across the nation.  Hotels themselves are also recognized for innovative and successful programs in community service; guest relations; special events; diversity; and eco-friendly practices.

Many of AH&LA’s more than 30 specialized committees, comprised of top-level hoteliers, management companies, and other representatives from the diverse lodging industry, will host meetings critical in strategically planning industry-wide programs and initiatives. 

Official conference dates are June 23 – 24, though special programming will also take place on Monday, June 22, and Thursday, June 25.  For additional event details, please visit AH&LA’s Summer Summit Webpage.

Registration is $250 for AH&LA members; $450 for nonmembers.  Several events are also available for purchase a la carte.  Guestrooms at the Hilton Chicago are being held with rates beginning at $279 for bookings made before May 26 via the AH&LA Website.  Contact Bevin Padden at (202) 289-3171 or bpadden@ahla.com with any questions.

Serving the hospitality industry for nearly a century, the American Hotel & Lodging Association (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.  For more about AH&LA, visit www.ahla.com.
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Contact:

Bevin Padden
American Hotel & Lodging Association
Phone: 202-289-3171
bpadden@ahla.com
http://www.ahla.com/ 

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Also See: American Hotel & Lodging Association Sends Letter to President Obama Opposing Government Business Travel Cutbacks, Reductions Hurt Administration’s Goals of Saving Jobs and Revitalizing the Nation’s Economy / April 2009

American Hotel & Lodging Association Responds to Northern Trust Accusations by Members of Congress Jobs Are Not a Luxury / February 2009

Guidlines for Meetings and Events Held by Companies that have Received Emergency Government Lending Issued by U.S. Travel Association, AH&LA and Others; Policies Support Prudent Use of Taxpayer Dollars while Supporting Meetings and Events Industry / February 2009
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