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Carlson CEO Hubert Joly Takes Over Leadership of
Carlson Hotels Worldwide, Replacing Jay Witzel

Thorsten Kirschke Named Chief Operating Officer of Carlson Hotels – Americas

MINNEAPOLIS, MINN.  (July 28, 2009) – Carlson, the parent company of Carlson Hotels Worldwide, today announced that Hubert Joly, Carlson President and Chief Executive Officer, will now also personally lead Carlson’s hotel business, supported by a global hotel management team. 

Carlson also announced the appointment of Thorsten Kirschke as the Chief Operating Officer of Carlson Hotels – Americas. Kirschke will assume his new role on Sept. 1 and report to Joly.

Kirschke comes to Carlson from The Rezidor Hotel Group based in Brussels, Belgium, where he was the Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer. Carlson is the main shareholder of Rezidor, which is one of the fastest growing hotel companies in the world.

“Thorsten brings an exceptional background of leadership and management success in the hotel industry to this role. His extensive global experience includes management roles in Russia, Germany, Denmark, Norway, England, United Arab Emirates and China. We are delighted to have him join our team,” Joly said. 

Thorsten Kirschke has been Rezidor Hotel Group's Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer since September 2006. Mr. Kirschke joined Rezidor  in 1995 in Corporate Food & Beverage and has since then held various managerial positions in operations and food and beverage functions. Since April 2002, Mr. Kirschke has served in the position of Area Vice President of Germany, Austria, Switzerland, South East Europe, Switzerland and Italy. Mr. Kirschke has an MBA degree in Hospitality Industry from Cornell Essec University in France.

Joly has been president and CEO of Carlson since March 2008. Prior to that, he was president and CEO of Carlson Wagonlit Travel, Carlson’s business travel management company.

Carlson also announced that Jay Witzel, who for 22 years has served in senior management positions, including President and CEO at Carlson Hotels Worldwide, will be leaving that position to serve in a consulting role within the hotel company. 

The changes support Carlson’s strategy to revitalize the Radisson brand in the Americas, and continue to grow its global portfolio of hotel brands as vibrant and contemporary leaders in the industry. Carlson recently announced that it has added 49 properties to its portfolio in the first six months of 2009, bringing its total number of properties to 1,048.

Carlson is a global hotel, marketing restaurant and travel company headquartered in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Carlson is one of the world’s leading hotel companies, with five brands spanning luxury to economy. Carlson hotel brands are: Regent® Hotels & Resorts, Radisson® Hotels & Resorts, Park Plaza® Hotels & Resorts, Country Inns & Suites By CarlsonSM and Park Inn® hotels. Its portfolio includes more than 1,040 hotels in 75 countries. In addition to its hotel brands, the company’s brands and services include: Carlson Marketing, T.G.I. Friday’s® and Pick Up Stix® restaurants, and Carlson Wagonlit Travel®. Carlson’s brands and services employ about 150,000 people in more than 150 countries.


Sam Macalus

Also See: Paul Kirwin Appointed President and Managing Director of Carlson Hotels Worldwide - The Americas; Additional Changes Announced In Business Development Structure / January 2008
Carlson Names Hubert Joly as President and CEO; First Non-family Member to Run the Company in its 70-year History / January 2008



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