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Latino Hotel Association to Host “Battle of the Brands” at Inaugural Conference
Charity Event Scheduled for November 17, 2011, at
Tropicana Las Vegas Hotel and Casino

HOUSTON, January 31, 2011—Officials of the Latino Hotel Association (LHA), the global organization dedicated to expanding Latino ownership, leadership and commerce in the hotel industry, recently announced at a press conference that it will host a black-tie charity event— “Battle of the Brands” —at the organization’s inaugural conference, to be held November 16-18, at the Tropicana Las Vegas Hotel and Casino.

Battle of the Brands, scheduled for November 17 at 6 p.m., will pair top hotel executives in the ring to “fight for education.”  Brand battlers, who will be matched by height and weight, will train with professional boxers before entering the ring to spar for three, one-minute rounds.  Proceeds from the black-tie event will be used to educate and train Latino hoteliers in industry practices, including operations, finance and fostering brand relationships.

Among the combatants currently on the fight card are Raj “The Rampage” Trivedi, executive vice president, franchise and chief development officer, La Quinta Inns & Suites; and Mark “Napoleon Dynamite” Williams, vice president North America development, Best Western International, Inc.  The two were among the first to sign up as brand battlers and wasted no time throwing down the gauntlet to other hotel brands.  “Any brand that doesn’t have the guts to step into the ring should turn off its great sign and go cower in a corner,” Trivedi said.

Mark “Napoleon Dynamite” Williams & Raj “The Rampage” Trivedi

The event will include a reception, dinner, well-known Latino entertainers, a live auction and after-party and feature five matches between senior hotel executives from the leading and toughest hotel brands.  “Wusses need not apply,” Williams taunted.

“Latinos continue to increase their presence and influence worldwide but we want to accelerate that advancement,” said William B. Fortier, chairman of the Latino Hotel Association and senior vice president development, the Americas at Hilton International. 

“We want to host an event that will encourage a sense of friendly rivalry among hotel industry brands and show our support for the Latino community,” said Carlos J. Rodriguez, Battle of the Brands chairman and president and managing partner, RodBlu Investments and DVI Cardel Funds.  “In our eyes, these fighters are already industry champions.  While we are taking every precaution to ensure a safe and fair fight, we do anticipate a few bruised egos!”

“Latinos contribute to the success of all hotel brands, from property level associates to executive staff, from developers and owners to lenders,” said Angela Gonzalez-Rowe, president and founder of LHA.  “The inaugural conference’s purpose is to increase awareness of hotel education among Latinos in the hotel industry.  We look forward to seeing the different brand representatives coming out in support of their individual companies at Battle of the Brands and expect everyone will enjoy the night’s festivities.  Our goal is to raise as much as $1 million.”

Battle of the Brands is a stand-alone event; registration for the annual conference is not necessary to participate.  Hotel industry supporters of the Latino community, including brands, owners, operators, product and service providers may purchase a table of 10 for $5,000.  Individual tickets may be purchased for $500.  For more information on the conference, Battle of the Brands and to register, please visit the LHA’s website at, or contact Angela Gonzalez-Rowe at (281) 668-9165 or by email at

About the Latino Hotel Association
Headquartered in suburban Houston, LHA is a worldwide, non-profit association dedicated to increasing Latino participation in the hospitality industry, to include ownership, leadership and commerce.  The organization provides education, international and regional conferences and networking opportunities with the world’s leading hotel companies.  Additional information is available at the association’s website,


Chris Daly or Jerry Daly
Daly Gray Public Relations
620 Herndon Parkway
Suite 115
Herndon, VA  20170
(703) 435-6293


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