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Fernando Poma, Managing Director of Real Hotels & Resorts, to
Share Entrepreneurial Vision With Cornell Hotel Students

Ithaca, NY, March 17, 2008 – Fernando Poma, managing director of Real Hotels & Resorts, will speak on Wednesday, April 2nd in the “Conversations with Entrepreneurs” series presented by the Leland C. and Mary M. Pillsbury Institute for Hospitality Entrepreneurship at the Cornell School of Hotel Administration. Poma will present from 4:30 – 5:30 p.m. in 291 Statler Hall, Beck Center. Guests are welcome.

Managing director since 2000, Poma has grown Real Hotels and Resorts from four to 22 premier hotel brands including InterContinental, Marriott, Quality and Comfort Inn. His growth plans are focused on Costa Rica, Honduras, Panama and Colombia and include a JW Marriott hotel, a JW Marriott Resort and five Courtyard by Marriott hotels. The company is also expanding its InterContinental hotel base.
Prior to joining Real Hotels and Resorts, Poma was assistant to the managing director of Choice Hotels Europe and worked in asset management and hotel acquisitions for the Westmont Hospitality Group. He graduated from the School of Hotel Administration at Cornell University and received his MBA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.

“Fernando Poma’s tremendous successes are testimony to his unique blend of talent, skill, and entrepreneurial drive. We are delighted he is returning to campus to share his entrepreneurial journey and innovation insights with our students and faculty,” said Tom Ward, managing director of the institute.

The final speaker in the spring series will be Patrick Meyers, chief legal officer and managing director, owner of Cervantes Capital/Quiznos, on April 17 from 1:15-2:15 p.m. in the Statler Amphitheatre of the Statler Hotel. 

The Conversations with Entrepreneurs series is sponsored by: Cornell Hospitality Advisors, eClips, Hotelie Entrepreneurs, and the National Society for Minorities in Hospitality.

About the Leland C. and Mary M. Pillsbury Institute for Hospitality Entrepreneurship at the Cornell School of Hotel Administration 
The institute supports and enables innovation and new business formation in the hospitality industry. Through our faculty and industry partners, the institute provides students with guidance on entrepreneurship study, introduces students to hospitality entrepreneurs, and encourages students to pursue entrepreneurial endeavors. The institute is also a platform for knowledge about forming new hospitality businesses, managing small and family-run businesses, franchising, corporate venturing, new venture funding, and innovation. To learn more about the institute, visit:, or contact Tom Ward, managing director, Leland C. and Mary M. Pillsbury Institute for Hospitality Entrepreneurship at 607.255.1217 or via email at


Cydney Peters


Also See: Thomas Ward Named Director of Cornell’s Leland and Mary Pillsbury Institute for Hospitality Entrepreneurship / January 2008
Leland Pillsbury, Co-Founder of Thayer Lodging Group, Donates $15 million to the Cornell Hotel School; Largest Single Gift Ever Made to the School / November 2006


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