Hotel Online  Special Report



  Four Key Executives at Best Western
International Promoted


PHOENIX, Dec. 29, 2003 — Best Western International Inc. has promoted David Kong to senior vice president-Marketing and Development, Mike Kistner to senior vice president Information Services/CIO, Loyd Nygaard to vice president-Member Operations Support, and Richard Bennett to vice president-Procurement.  The promotions are effective immediately according to Tom Higgins, Best Western president and chief executive officer.
David Kong, who joined Best Western in 2001, was previously with KPMG Consulting and before that with Hyatt Hotels Corporation for 19 years.   In his new capacity, Kong will have responsibility for all marketing functions in addition to his global strategy and development duties for North America and Asia.  Kong will also retain responsibility for Best Western’s loyalty program, Gold Crown Club International and the Best Western pre-paid travel card. Kong has completed the Executive Development Program at the Kellogg Graduate School of Management from Northwestern University and has a bachelor’s degree in business administration in Travel Industry Management from the University of Hawaii.

Mike Kistner, previously vice president of Information Services, was elevated to senior vice president.  He retains his chief information officer title.  He has overall responsibility for all corporate information systems technology infrastructure and oversight of information service enhancements at the property level.   Kistner joined Best Western three years ago from Cendant Corporation in Phoenix where he served in a similar capacity and before that was with Super 8 Motels. Kistner holds bachelor of science and associate of arts degrees in accounting and information systems from Northern State University, Aberdeen, S.D., and a master of science degree in Information systems from Colorado State University.

Loyd Nygaard, who began his career at 

David Kong

Mike Kistner

Richard Bennett
Best Western in 1988 with a strong background in hotel and business operations, previously held the position of managing director-Member Operations Support. In his new capacity as vice president-Member Operations Support, he has oversight of revenue management, quality assurance, design and on- property consulting and training functions at Best Western properties throughout North America.  Nygaard graduated from Fort Hays State University in Hays Kansas.

Richard Bennett, a 25-year hospitality veteran, joined Best Western in 2000 from Prime Hospitality where he held various positions for 21 years including 15 years in purchasing.  Prior to his promotion, he was managing director of BW Supply.  In his new capacity as vice president Procurement he will manage the Best Western vendor purchasing program which last year generated sales in excess of $100 million.  Bennett studied hotel and restaurant management at Fairleigh Dickenson University, Rutherford, NJ. and maintains a home in Sanibel, Fla. 

Best Western International is THE WORLD’S LARGEST HOTEL CHAIN® with more than 4,100 hotels in 80 countries. It is a membership association of independently owned and operated hotels that provides marketing, reservations and operational support to its members.

Best Western International
Also See: Best Western Rolling Out Free to Guest High Speed Internet Access at 2,300 hotels in the United States, Canada / November 2003
Anupam Narayan and David Kong Named SVP's for Best Western’s Global Operations Strategy / March 2003

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