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Gary W. Loveman, Chairman of Harrah’s and Howard Schultz, Chairman of Starbucks
Inducted into Hospitality Industry Hall of Honor at the Conrad N. Hilton College of Hotel
and Restaurant Management at the University of Houston

HOUSTON, Oct. 22, 2007— More than 200 guests were on hand as two giants of the hospitality industry were inducted into the Hospitality Industry Hall of Honor at the Conrad N. Hilton College of Hotel and Restaurant Management at the University of Houston on Oct. 17, 2007.

The Hospitality Hall of Honor, now in its 12 year, recognized Gary W. Loveman, chairman, CEO and president of Harrah’s Entertainment, Inc., and Howard Schultz, chairman of Starbucks Coffee Company.  Bob Ravener, senior vice president of U.S. Partner Resources for Starbucks, accepted the honor for Schultz.  

Eric Hilton (center) congratulates Bob Ravener (left) senior vice president of U.S. Partner Resources for Starbucks Coffee Company, and Gary Loveman (right), chairman, CEO and president for Harrah’s Entertainment, Inc., on their induction into the Hospitality Industry Hall of Honor at the Conrad N. Hilton College of Hotel and Restaurant Management on October 17.  Ravener accepted the award for Howard Schultz.  Hilton was inducted into the Hospitality Hall of Honor in 2006.
“The Board of Overseers is pleased to honor these industry pioneers,” said Thomas W. Lattin, professor and managing director of the Hospitality Hall of Honor.  “Their significant contributions have truly shaped the landscape of our industry.”  

Gary W. Loveman, a former associate professor at the Harvard University Graduate School of Business Administration, joined Harrah’s Entertainment, Inc. in 1998.  Since being named CEO in 2003, Loveman has presided over a period of growth and profitability that culminated in Harrah’s 2005 acquisition of Caesars Entertainment, Inc. at $9.4 billion, the largest single transaction in the industry’s history.  His extensive background in retail marketing and service-management also led to the development and implementation of the gaming industry’s most successful loyalty program, Total Rewards.  Today, Total Rewards boasts more than 40 million customers.  Harrah’s performance has earned Loveman the distinction of being recognized as the gaming and lodging industry’s Best CEO by Institutional Investor magazine for four consecutive years.

Howard Schultz wasn't the first person to be carried away by the aroma of a well-roasted coffee bean, but the Starbucks Coffee Company leader was undoubtedly the first to turn that reverie into a billion dollar retail operation. His adventure started in 1981 when he traveled from New York to Seattle to check out a popular coffee bean store called Starbucks that had been buying many of the Hammarplast Swedish drip coffeemakers he was selling.  In 1983, he bought Starbucks for $3.8 million and implemented a series of employee-friendly practices that were unprecedented in retail, including comprehensive health care coverage for employees working at least 20 hours a week and their domestic partners.   Starbucks experienced astronomical expansion in the 1990s and today, Schultz believes that Starbucks is “just getting started.”

The Hospitality Hall of Honor recognizes industry leaders who have made great contributions in their fields.  It includes the Leaders Gallery, a hallway lined with the portraits of past honorees, and the Hospitality Archives, artifacts provided by the inductees that memorialize their achievements and leadership.  The college has been recognizing industry leaders in this manner since 1996.

“The Hospitality Hall of Honor has evolved from a small gathering of friends and associates of a given year's inductees to a week of events managed by a student board of directors from Hilton College,” Dean John Bowen said. “Not only do we honor two of our industry's most worthy recipients, but we also provide our students with the opportunity to showcase their knowledge, skills and passion for the hospitality industry.”

The Hall of Honor Board of Overseers
The Board of Overseers nominates and elects each year’s Hall of Honor inductees. The Board represents a wide variety of hospitality interests and includes all previous honorees or their designated representatives, as well as members of the following organizations: the Conrad N. Hilton College of Hotel and Restaurant Management, the American Hotel & Lodging Association, the National Restaurant Association, the Travel Industry Association of America, the International Hotel and Restaurant Association and the American Gaming Association.
Steven C. Anderson, CAE
President & CEO
National Restaurant Association

James Biggar Jr.
First Vice President
Tishman Hotel Corporation

Stephen F. Bollenbach
Co-Chairman & CEO
Hilton Hotels Corporation

Dr. John Bowen
Conrad N. Hilton College

Norman Brinker
Chairman Emeritus
Brinker International

Melinda Bush, CHA
President & CEO
Hospitality Resources Worldwide

Jerry Cargill
Glazer’s Family of Companies

Fernando Castro y Castro
Fundacion Miguel Aleman

Robert Crandall
Chairman & CEO Emeritus
American Airlines

Michael Davidson
Vice President, National Circulation Sales
USA Today

Roger J. Dow
President & CEO
Travel Industry Association of America

Paul Dubrule and Gerard Pelisson

Gabriel Escarrer
Chairman and Founder
Sol Melia S.A.

Elaine Grossinger Etess
Elaine G. Etess Associates

Frank Fahrenkopf Jr.
President & CEO
American Gaming Association

Sir Rocco Forte
Rocco Forte Hotels

Randy A. Garfield
Walt Disney Travel Co.

John Q. Hammons
Chairman & CEO Emeritus
John Q. Hammons Hotels

Wolf Hengst
Four Seasons Resorts & Hotels

Eric M. Hilton
Conrad N. Hilton Foundation

Edward and Lynn Hogan
Chairman and Founder
Hogan Family Foundation

Roger Kenny
Managing Partner
Boardroom Consultants

Sol Kerzner
Chairman & CEO
Kerzner International Resorts

Joe Lee
Darden Restaurants, Inc.

Mike Malley
Publisher/Editorial Director
Hotel & Motel Management

Richard Marriott
Host Marriott Corp.

Joe McInerney
President & CEO
American Hotel & Lodging Association

David I. McMillan
Chief Executive Officer
International Hotel and Restaurant Association

Curtis Nelson
President & COO
Carlson Companies

William S. Norman
President & CEO
Travel Industry Association of America

Dr. Ronald A. Nykiel, CHA, CHE
Conrad N. Hilton Distinguished Chair
Conrad N. Hilton College

Scott Pierce
Vice President 
Nielsen Travel Network

Steven S. Reinemund
Chairman & CEO

Laura Roberts
Chief Executive Officer
Pantheon Chemical

Michael D. Rose
Gaylord Entertainment Co.

Richard J. Schnieders
Chairman and CEO
SYSCO Corporation

Herbert M. Siegel
The Statler Foundation

Stacy Silver
Group Publisher, Hotel Group
ICD Publications

Randall A. Smith
Chief Executive Officer
Smith Travel Research

Shirley Topmiller
Yum! Brands/KFC

Leighton Wildrick
President & CEO
The Newcomen Society of the United States

Roy Winegardner
Winegardner Companies

Tim and Nina Zagat
Zagat Survey, LLC

The ceremony was the culmination of a week of events, including receptions for inductees, an industry lunch and two days of “think tank” sessions that offered students an opportunity to learn first-hand about the changing hospitality industry.  Seventy industry experts from across the country served as panelists for 16 sessions. Among the topics discussed were: how independent boutique hotels were competing with major brands; how marketing strategies for casinos in Las Vegas, Atlantic City and Louisiana differ; what’s new in food & beverage trends; how the latest technology is affecting the hospitality industry; how the green movement is impacting hospitality; plus discussions on revenue management, labor challenges of the 21st century, diversity issues, and women in leadership roles, among others.

Starbucks also hosted a session on how the small Seattle café has grown to become one of the largest and most profitable hospitality companies in the world.  In addition, Eric Hilton, a 2006 Hall of Honor inductee, met with students to talk about his career with Hilton Hotels and his memories of the Hilton family legacy.  

Among those attending were Claudine Williams, a pioneer for women in gaming and the first woman in Nevada to head a major casino; Jan Jones, former mayor of Las Vegas and the senior vice president of Communications & Government Relations for Harrah’s Entertainment, as well as several other executives from Harrah’s, partners from Starbucks and Houston area industry leaders.

As is now tradition, a student board of directors planned and managed all Hall of Honor events.  “Our college is known for providing students a real-world experience of the hospitality industry,” Lattin said.  “Assuming full responsibility for Hall of Honor Week certainly provided them with a true taste of hospitality management.”

Previous Hall of Honor inductees have included Walt Disney, Barron Hilton, Eric Hilton, Curtis Carlson, Howard Johnson, J. W. Marriott, Robert Dedman, Steve Bollenbach, Kemmons Wilson, Michael Leven, Ray Kroch, and Colonel Harland Sanders.

About the University of Houston 
The University of Houston, Texas’ premier metropolitan research and teaching institution, is home to more than 40 research centers and institutes and sponsors more than 300 partnerships with corporate, civic and governmental entities. UH, the most diverse research university in the country, stands at the forefront of education, research and service with more than 35,000 students. 


 Debbie Maurer  
Oct. 22, 2007 713/743-5594

Also See: Brinker, Hammons, Leven, Rose and Winegardner to be Inducted into the Hospitality Industry Hall of Honor / August 2004


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