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Niagara University College of Hospitality and Tourism Management Honoring
David Kong, President & CEO of Best Western International, the
Lifetime Hotelier Leadership Award

NIAGARA UNIVERSITY, N.Y. (Oct. 15, 2007) – David Kong, president and chief executive officer of Best Western International, and Charles S. Cutts, president and chief executive officer of The Corporation of Massey Hall and Roy Thomson Hall in Toronto, Ont., are among the honorees at the Niagara University College of Hospitality and Tourism Management’s seventh annual convocation Oct. 25 at 4 p.m. in the Alumni Chapel.  The event is sponsored by The Maid of the Mist Corporation.
Kong, who will receive the Lifetime Hotelier Leadership Award, joined Best Western, the world’s largest hotel chain, in 2001.  During his tenure at Best Western, Kong has held several high profile positions including vice president of strategic service; senior vice president of global strategy and development, and senior vice president of marketing and development. He is a hospitality veteran with more than 35 years of experience and has also held senior management positions at Hyatt, KPMG Consulting, and Omni International. He has also worked for Hilton, Hilton International and Regent International.
Cutts will be feted with the Cultural Management Leadership Award.  Since 1992, he has led The Corporation of Massey Hall and Roy Thomson Hall.  The facilities stage 400 concert attractions a year.  From 1980 to 1989, he was the general manager of the former O’Keefe Centre for the Performing Arts.  Cutts has received the Association of Cultural Executives (ACE) Award for Cultural Leadership in 2003.  He is the chair of Tourism Toronto and is director with the Toronto Board of Trade.   
Other honorees include:

Paul Cohen, president of Partner Concepts, will receive the Tourism Industry Leadership Award.  Cohen founded Partner Concepts, a full-service travel-marketing firm in 2002.  The firm has the exclusive rights to market the 2008 Beijing Olympics in the U.S.  Cohen is also assisting to re-shape the focus of The Travel Channel.  He has also headed up the hospitality and tourism division of Enten & Associates, an advertising agency based in Bethesda, Md., and served as director of marketing and strategic alliances for the American Hotel & Motel Association.  Cohen is a 1989 graduate of the State University of New York, Brockport. 

Peter Coyne, president of Coyne Associates, will receive the Urban Regeneration Leadership Award.  Coyne is a chartered surveyor with considerable experience as a practitioner and as a general manager in property development, urban redevelopment and social & economic regeneration. He has also been the chief executive of the Dublin Docklands Development Authority in Ireland, one of the largest urban regeneration projects in Europe and saw the project through its first seven and a half years.  He undertook strategic and area master planning; land acquisition and de-contamination; mixed use property development; area environmental and infrastructural development; and comprehensive social regeneration with specific emphasis on education.

For more information on convocation and its honorees, contact Dr. Gary Praetzel, dean of the college, at 716-286-8272.


Gary D. Praetzel, Ph.D.
College of Hospitality & Tourism Management
P.O. Box 2012 - Room #416 St. Vincent's Hall
Niagara University, NY 14109-2012

Also See: Niagara University's College of Hospitality and Tourism Management Honors Jay Witzel with the Lifetime Hotelier Achievement Award / October 2005


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