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pictured: AH&LA senior vice president of member relations Matthew MacLaren, right, presented plaque to ORLA CEO and president Jason Brandt; and ORLA Education Foundation executive director Wendy Popkin

Wilsonville, Oregon, October 2015--The Oregon Restaurant & Lodging Association Education Foundation (ORLAEF) has signed an agreement with Travel Oregon to be the customer service training provider for Oregon’s travel and tourism industry using the American Hotel & Lodging Educational Institute’s Guest Service Gold® program and Certified Guest Service Professional (CGSP®) designation. The statewide training initiative was announced Sunday, October 4, at ORLA’s annual convention.

ORLAEF will market Guest Service Gold®, CSGP®, and the TripAdvisor® Reputation Management for Front-Line Staff training program to hospitality employees throughout Oregon, in partnership with Travel Oregon, the state’s tourism agency. ORLA staff members have been trained to facilitate in-person Guest Service Gold® sessions and the association has earned the designation of Certified Guest Service Partner. The Travel Oregon staff has also gone through the training and certification process and become a Certified Guest Service Partner—the first state tourism agency to achieve this designation.

“Ensuring Oregon’s visitors have the best possible experience is incredibly important,” said Todd Davidson, Travel Oregon CEO. “We know customer service can make all the difference in a guest’s impression of a destination. So, we will work to create an environment where a traveler’s recollections of Oregon’s unmatched culinary scene and stunning outdoor vistas are woven together with the memories of how welcome they felt and how well they were treated.” 

Guest service training was identified as an important initiative by both organizations, so working together made perfect sense.               

 “ORLA and Travel Oregon often heard from our industry partners that they needed a training tool to help them teach and reinforce good guest service principles; an important element many businesses felt they needed to improve upon to help cultivate loyal guests and earn favorable reviews,” explained Wendy Popkin, executive director, Oregon Restaurant & Lodging Association Education Foundation. “Travel Oregon’s collaboration, and their resource support, extends our reach and capacity to help the foundation meet its mission of providing and supporting high-quality educational opportunities for the travel and tourism industry”. 

With the support of Shelly Weir, AHLEI’s vice president of domestic sales, Popkin approached Travel Oregon about the opportunity to create a partnership that would launch this pilot program. Travel Oregon has embraced the joint proposal and has been instrumental in the program’s launch. 

For more information on Guest Service Gold® training programs, visit www.ahlei.org or call 1.800.349.0299 or +1.407.999.8100. For the Oregon program, please visit www.OregonRLA.org/ORGuest.

 

About the American Hotel & Lodging Educational Institute (AHLEI)

Established in 1953 as the nonprofit education and training arm of the American Hotel & Lodging Association (AH&LA), AHLEI’s mission is to continue being the preferred provider to the lodging industry, hospitality schools, and related hospitality industries by developing and providing quality resources to educate, develop, and certify hospitality professionals worldwide.

 

Contact: Elizabeth Johnson

ejohnson@ahla.com / +1.517.318.2359

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