News for the Hospitality Executive
ORLANDO, FL - On Saturday, December 10th, at the largest black-tie holiday gala for the hospitality industry, the Central Florida Hotel & Lodging Association (CFHLA) will present William “Bill” Davis, President and Chief Operating Officer of Universal Orlando, with the 2011 CFHLA “Charles Andrews Memorial Hospitality Award for Community Leadership.” Each year, this prestigious award is given to a local leader for their contribution to tourism through community service.
This award is the “highest honor” bestowed upon an individual by CFHLA, in recognition of their achievements and contributions to the Central Florida hospitality industry, as well as the community at large. The award is named after the founding father of CFHLA, Charles Andrews, and exemplifies perseverance and dedication to a cause.
Mr. Davis is responsible for the oversight of Universal Orlando Resort, including the Universal Studios theme park, the Islands of Adventure theme park, and the 30-acre CityWalk entertainment complex. He reports directly to Tom Williams, Chairman of Universal Parks and Resorts.
Previously, Mr. Davis served as CEO of Universal Mediterranea. In his year there, Mr. Davis successfully led the business through troubling economic conditions in the region, negotiated a new labor contract, instituted employee enhancement programs and reduced turnover by 50 percent.
Mr. Davis has more than 33 years of experience in the theme park industry. Much of that is with the Anheuser-Busch company, where he started out in sales, held general manager positions at the Sea World theme parks in Florida and Ohio and eventually became Executive Vice President and General Manager at Sea World of California. Mr. Davis then moved on to Senior Vice President of Guest Services at the Busch Entertainment Corporation where he was responsible for park and culinary operations, merchandise, safety/environmental and beer promotion for nine theme parks in the United States.
Mr. Davis is a graduate of San Diego State University, as well as the Brooks Institute of Photography, and he has earned a Master’s of Business Administration from Stetson University. He is a past president of Visit Orlando and current Executive Committee Board Member. He has served on the Give Kids the World Board of Directors, the San Diego Convention and Visitors Bureau Executive Committee, and the American Zoological Association as a Professional Fellow.
Davis will be honored during the 2011 CFHLA Hospitality Gala, which will be held on Saturday, December 10th, from 6:00pm to Midnight at the Hilton Orlando. Over 1,200 Hospitality Executives are expected to attend along with many elected officials from all over Central Florida.
Past recipients of the Charles Andrews Memorial Hospitality Award for Community Leadership include:
1999 - Walt Disney of the Walt Disney World Company
2000 - Jim Brown of McCree Incorporated
2001 - Bill Peeper of Visit Orlando
2002 - John Wycoff of the Greater Orlando Aviation Authority
2003 - Thomas Williams of Universal Orlando
2004 - Jeb Bush, Florida Governor
2005 - Richard T. Crotty of Orange County Government
2006 - Al Weiss of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts
2007 - Mark McHugh of Gatorland
2008 - Tom Ackert of the Orange County Convention Center
2009 - Jim Atchinson of SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment
2010 - Martin Belz of the Peabody Hotel Group
For more information about CFHLA, please visit our website: www.cfhla.org.
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