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Jim FitzGibbon, President Worldwide Hotel Operations of
Four Seasons Hotels & Resorts, to Retire

New Senior Leadership Appointments Include Chris Hart, President, Hotel Operations - Asia Pacific
and Craig Reid, President, Hotel Operations - Americas

TORONTO - June 9, 2011 - Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts announced today that, after an inspiring and dynamic career, Jim FitzGibbon, President Worldwide Hotel Operations, has decided to retire.  Mr. FitzGibbon will continue to be involved with the Company in an advisory role as Four Seasons transitions to a new organizational structure.  He will officially relinquish these transitional responsibilities at the end of 2012.

“We will all miss Jim’s leadership, business acumen, warmth and humour.  All of us at Four Seasons have benefited enormously from the lasting contributions Jim has made to our organization and culture,” said Katie Taylor, CEO, Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts.  “In his distinguished 35 year career, Jim has mentored and stewarded many of the Company’s current and future leaders, leaving behind a solid foundation for succession, and a lasting legacy of leadership and friendship.  I am personally grateful for the tremendous support he has given me over our many years working together.”

An Illustrious Career

FitzGibbon’s career at Four Seasons has spanned 10 posts in almost as many countries, beginning with an entry level position in the Front Office at the Inn on the Park Toronto and culminating in his appointment to President, Worldwide Hotel Operations in 2006.  Since that time, FitzGibbon has helped Four Seasons navigate successfully through the recent global recession, and also gathered an enormous wealth of ties and relationships around the world, both within Four Seasons and with guests and customers.  His empathy and engaging personality have ensured him a wide range of friends and supporters, and his steady, unfailing sense of fairness and inclusion has earned him the respect of all who know him well.

“I count myself exceedingly fortunate to have been able to spend my career with Four Seasons,” said Jim FitzGibbon.  “The opportunity to grow and learn with the Company, and to be able to lead a team of the most talented and passionate people in the business, has been tremendously rewarding.  While I will certainly miss the day to day interactions with our guests and employees, I know that I have formed friendships that will last a lifetime.”    

A New Generation of Leadership

As Four Seasons transitions to a new generation of leadership, it is also transitioning to a new and elevated hotel operational structure.  For some time now, the Company has been adding resources to each region, in recognition of the need to have on the ground expertise in areas such as finance, marketing communications and F&B.  

Four Seasons is now adding two regional Presidents of Hotel Operations for Asia Pacific and the Americas to its executive team.  Antoine Corinthios already fulfills that role for Europe, the Middle East and Africa.  

These appointments are consistent with Four Seasons long term focus on promotion from within and strengthen the Company’s ability to deliver best in class results and sustainable growth in the years ahead.
  • Chris Hart is appointed President, Hotel Operations - Asia Pacific.  In this role, Hart will continue to provide strategic leadership for hotel operations throughout the Asia Pacific region, which is the fastest growing part of the Company.   All Regional Vice Presidents in Asia Pacific will continue to report to Hart, and he will report directly to Katie Taylor.  Born in Canada and educated in England, Hart joined Four Seasons in Edmonton in 1984, progressing to increasingly senior roles within the Company.  In January, 2008 he was promoted to Senior Vice President, Operations, Asia Pacific.  Hart will continue to be based in Singapore.
  • Craig Reid is appointed President, Hotel Operations - Americas.  In this new role, Reid will assume responsibility for hotel operations in Canada, the United States and Central and South America.  All Americas Regional Vice Presidents will report to Reid, and he will report directly to Katie Taylor.  Born in Lima, Peru, Reid spent his formative years in Spain, France, Switzerland, and eventually England.  He started with Four Seasons in Washington DC in 1983.  Reid was promoted to Senior Vice President, Operations, Americas in 2007, overseeing half of the Company’s Americas portfolio.  Reid will continue to be based out of Dallas, Texas.
In addition to these important appointments, Four Seasons is also creating a new executive position to oversee global product and innovation.
  • Chris Hunsberger is appointed Executive Vice President, Product and Innovation.  In this newly created role, Chris will be responsible for overseeing the Company's product evolution and innovation efforts.   Guy Rigby, Vice President, Food & Beverage, Americas and Scott Taber, Vice President Rooms, Americas, will report directly to Chris, and Chris will report directly to Katie Taylor.  Hunsberger began his career with Four Seasons in 1981 at The Pierre, New York (then a Four Seasons hotel).  In January of 2008, Chris was promoted to Senior Vice President, Operations, Americas.  He will continue to be based out of Washington, D.C.
These three operational appointments are effective August 1, 2011.

Having strong leadership for Four Seasons legal, compliance and risk management activities is also becoming increasingly important as the Company opens properties in more new and diverse markets.  Effective immediately:
  • Sarah Cohen is appointed Executive Vice President and General Counsel.  This appointment recognizes the influential role that Sarah has fulfilled as General Counsel since 2009, both as legal advisor and risk management strategist as the Company continues to increase the number of jurisdictions in which we operate.  Sarah’s significant thought leadership and legal expertise in leading an increasingly complex portfolio of businesses will continue to help shape and guide our growth strategy and long term development plans.  Sarah joined Four Seasons in 1998 as Corporate Counsel, progressing to increasingly senior roles within the Company.  In 2006 she was promoted to Senior Vice President and was subsequently promoted to General Counsel in August 2009.  In this role, Sarah will continue to report to Katie Taylor. Sarah is based out of the Toronto Corporate office.
“The structure that we have announced today has been designed to reflect the future needs of the Company as we grow and evolve,” Taylor said.  “It will enable us to provide strategic and senior leadership as close to our regional operating businesses as possible, responding to the diverse business challenges of each region in a way that has the most impact.  The structure also allows us to continue to grow future leaders from within the Company.  On behalf of everyone at Four Seasons, I congratulate our new leaders on these significant roles.”

About Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts
Four Seasons is dedicated to perfecting the travel experience through continual innovation and the highest standards of hospitality.  From elegant surroundings of the finest quality, to caring, highly personalised 24-hour service, Four Seasons embodies a true home away from home for those who know and appreciate the best.  The deeply instilled Four Seasons culture is personified in its employees – people who share a single focus and are inspired to offer great service.  Founded in 1960, Four Seasons has followed a targeted course of expansion, opening hotels and residences in major city centres and desirable resort destinations around the world. Currently with 84 properties in 34 countries, and more than 50 projects under development, Four Seasons continues to lead the hospitality industry with innovative enhancements, making business travel easier and leisure travel more rewarding.  For more information on Four Seasons, visit press.fourseasons.com

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Contact: 

Sorya Gaulin
Director, Corporate Public Relations
Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts
Tel. 416.441.4767
sorya.gaulin@fourseasons.com

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Also See: Kathleen Taylor, President and CEO of Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts, Will Receive the 2011 International Society of Hospitality Consultants Pioneer Award / September 2010

Leland C. Pillsbury Receives ISHC Pioneer Award; Pillsbury's Accomplishments Range from Launching New Hotel Brands, to Pioneering Revenue and Yield Management Systems, to Creating a Global Internet Marketing Company / February 2010
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