Hospitality Financial and Technology Professionals (HFTP®) is pleased to announce two champions of hospitality technology: Michael Blake, CAE and Henri Roelings as the 2020 HFTP International Hospitality Technology Hall of Fame inductees. Blake, CEO of Hospitality Technology Next Generation (HTNG), was recognized for his experience and leadership in promoting hospitality innovation and technology. Roelings, owner and CEO of HospitalityNet.org, was recognized for building a comprehensive digital platform for broad distribution of industry news and commentary. Both will be honored at the Hospitality Industry Technology Exposition and Conference (HITEC®) in San Antonio, Texas USA on October 27, 2020.
The International Hospitality Technology Hall of Fame is HFTP’s highest level of recognition in the area of technology. Since 1989, 47 individuals have received this award as a reflection of their contributions to the hospitality industry.
Michael Blake has led HTNG as its CEO since 2015, an organization with over 4,500 members which represents over 50 percent of total rooms available in the hospitality marketplace. In his tenure at HTNG, Blake has been recognized for expanding the organization’s global reach, vendor participation, workgroup efforts and greater industry partnerships. Prior to HTNG, Blake gained a variety of experiences leading a global enterprise spread over 65 different countries. He served as the CIO of Commune Hotels & Resorts, where he provided strategic leadership and sound perspective to contribute to the management and evolution of Commune’s global IT functions. Blake was previously the CIO for Hyatt and set the global technology direction for their global footprint. He has over 20 years of experience in finance and technology in various roles. Before his CIO positions with Commune and Hyatt, Blake was SVP of IT for First Data, CFO of IT Finance at Kaiser Permanente and Director of IT Finance for Sears. In each role, he was the highest-ranking IT finance resource and key internal consultant and advisor to international senior leadership teams.
“While the hospitality industry and society are undergoing a significant level of turmoil, it is truly humbling that my peers took a quick pause to induct me into HFTP’s Technology Hall of Fame,” said Blake. “I look at this award not as an individual honor, but a recognition to the support our industry continuously provides through extensive collaborative efforts.”
Henri Roelings is recognized as a thought leader in global hospitality and digital platform innovator. Under his leadership, Roelings has pioneered online B2B publishing in the hospitality industry since 1994, launching brands such as HospitalityNet, WIWIH, PineappleSearch.com® and the HOTEL Yearbook. Roelings is an advisory board member of the International Hotel & Restaurant Association (IH&RA) and member of the HFTP HITEC Advisory Councils for Europe and North America. He received HSMAI’s “Top 25 Most Extraordinary Minds in Sales and Marketing” honor in 2014.
“I am indeed greatly honored and humbled by this recognition, something which I have never imagined,” said Roelings. “I have been very fortunate to have been attending and getting involved with HITEC over the last 25 years. Over that time, I have also learnt from many smart and distinguished people, many of whom are members of this distinguished club.”
HITEC San Antonio will take place from October 26-29, 2020 at the Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center in San Antonio, Texas USA. The event is billed as part of “The Best of HFTP” alongside the co-located events: HFTP Annual Convention, Club Summit and Entrepreneur 20X. For more information about HFTP’s events, visit www.hftp.org and www.hitec.org or contact the HFTP Meetings & Special Events Department at [email protected].