ATLANTA, December 1, 2020: The International Society of Hospitality Consultants (ISHC) named Davonne Reaves as the recipient of the sixth annual Lori Raleigh Award for Emerging Excellence in Hospitality Consulting during its annual conference. Reaves received a one-year associate membership to the ISHC to further professional relationships and experience all that the Society has to offer through planned events and interacting with top hospitality industry consultants from around the globe. The organization also announced its 2020 Rising Star & Young Leader category award winners.
Reaves is the founder and chief hospitality strategist of The Vonne Group, a firm specializing in travel market research, asset and operational management and brand development for boutique hotels. She is an award-winning hotel consultant, hotel asset manager and published author, with over 14 years’ experience in the lodging industry. Prior to founding The Vonne Group, Reaves held positions at the Hyatt Regency Atlanta, Blair Management Consultants, Horwath HTL and CHMWarnick. She is regarded by industry peers as an innovator, entrepreneur and supporter of those looking to get into the hospitality industry. Reaves co-authored “Tidbits for the Emerging Pineapple Professional,” a guide for hospitality industry newcomers, and co-founded Epiq Collective, a commercial real estate investment fund targeting millennials investors seeking hotel and multi-family ownership opportunities. Reaves created a signature system called The Pathway to Hotel Ownership and has educated over 3,000 individuals on the hotel acquisition and investment process, successfully guiding many to becoming hotel owners. She has held numerous industry positions and has volunteered her time and expertise to organizations including Urban Land Institute, AH&LA Under 30 Gateway Council, Chair Emeritus; National Association of Black Hotel Owners, Operators and Developers (NABHOOD), Chair, Women in NABHOOD; Hospitality Industry Professionals (HIP-Atlanta), President; Association of Young Real Estate Professionals, Member; National Society of Minorities in Hospitality Georgia State Chapter, Industry Advisor; and co-founder of the professional network, the Next Generation in Lodging. She also was selected as Hotel Management Magazine’s “Top Hospitality Young Professional” in 2016 Reaves is a graduate of Georgia State University and serves as an advisory board member for the Cecil B. Day School of Hospitality.
“Words alone cannot express what an honor it is to be the recipient of the 2020 ISHC Lori Raleigh Award for Emerging Excellence,” Reaves said. “I am humbled to be the first African-American woman bestowed with this award. Throughout my career as an asset manager, it has been rare to encounter fellow African-Americans in ownership and senior leadership roles. To me, earning this award is a sign of the advancement of producing a diverse group of leaders in our beloved hospitality industry. My personal mission is to help forge pathways for developing emerging leaders from various socio-economic backgrounds. With this award, I hope to leverage ISHC with the aim of advancing diversity by helping to create a roadmap to increase the percentage of minority-owned hotels.”
The Lori Raleigh Award for Emerging Excellence in Hospitality Consulting represents one of four annual ISHC-sponsored awards recognizing next generation leaders in hospitality, this one specific to consulting. The Rising Star Awards highlight emerging talent specific to the Asia Pacific and Caribbean regions, while the Young Leader Award honors future hospitality leaders worldwide. This year’s award winners include:
- Davinia Cisier, Director of Development Luxury Hotels, Accor (IHIF Young Leader Award)
- Creasha-Dine Thompson, Event Planning Manager, Hyatt Ziva & Zilara Rose Hall (Rising Star Award, Caribbean)
- Corey Hamabata, Senior Vice President, Asia, Hotels & Hospitality, JLL (Rising Star Award, Asia)
Andrea Belfanti, executive director of ISHC commented, “Recognizing emerging talent in the field of hospitality is core to the mission of ISHC and is particularly important during these challenging times as a reminder of our industry’s resilience and future. Each of these award winners has a bright future in hospitality, and we’re proud to have the opportunity to be part of their career and congratulate them on their achievements thus far. The theme of this year’s ISHC Annual Conference was Together in Hospitality, a message of inspiration and belief that we can reach across regions, disciplines and sectors to recover quickly and stronger as a result. The industry needs young talent like these individuals to innovate and forge a path for a more promising future.”
For more information on ISHC Awards, please visit www.ishc.com/awards.