ATLANTA, GA (July 28, 2015) – To support its unprecedented growth in 2015, Atlanta-based Hotel Equities (HE) www.hotelequities.com announced promotions and the expansion of leadership roles for Elizabeth Derby and Jeff Shockley, two of its key executives. The firm promoted Elizabeth Derby to Vice President of Talent and Performance Excellence. Jeff Shockley increases his focus on owner relations and retains the title of Vice President of Acquisitions & Financial Analysis.
In a role critical to the firm’s growth, Ms. Derby oversees the transitioning of hotels into the portfolio through operations, onboarding and retention of talent. The majority of her new responsibilities include driving guest satisfaction and quality assurance by working with associates. She coordinates new hotel openings, transitions and acquisitions in regard to staffing, manages vendor relationships, analyzes data and trends to support company growth and coordinates long-range strategic planning.
“Putting additional focus on performance excellence and keeping our hotels in the top percentile of the brands directly impact return visits and top line growth,” said Brad Rahinsky, President and COO of Hotel Equities. “We are committed to add value for our partners and stakeholders.”
When a management contract is signed, Mr. Shockley begins his relationship with the property’s owner. Whether it is a conversion, a renovation or new build, he works closely to partner with owners to ensure that Hotel Equities delivers value engineering on each project, every step of the way, from securing a new flag to opening the hotel in a timely manner.
“Jeff has a unique skill set with his ability to work with all brands in the capacity of an owner representative to ensure the project runs smoothly from underwriting to designing and transitioning the project to our operations team for the critical path and pre-opening,” said Joe Reardon, SVP of Marketing and Business Development. “Our owners have asked for this value-added service and we think it not only strengthens our partnership, but also delivers a better product both on time and properly ramped at CO.”
Ms. Derby has spent more than 30 years in the hospitality industry. She joined Hotel Equities 18 years ago as the firm’s first Director of Sales & Marketing and helped grow the portfolio from four hotels in Atlanta to more than 90 properties in 16 states from Connecticut to Texas to California. She began her career at the Kiawah Island Resort near Charleston, South Carolina and her early industry experience includes positions at the The Mills House Hotel in Charleston, the Memphis Marriott, the Lowell Sheraton, and the Charlotte Marriott Executive Park. She holds a B.S. degree in Administrative Management from Clemson University.
Mr. Shockley brings over twenty years of leadership experience in hotel operations as well as property, asset, and financial management in his expanded role. He worked as a Sales Manager with Marriott before joining Hotel Equities where he served as a General Manager and earned the Fairfield Inn brand’s GM of the Year twice in his career. As Hotel Equities grew, Mr. Shockley assumed additional leadership responsibilities and was promoted to Financial Analyst in 2007 before achieving his current position. He holds a B.S. in Political Science from the University of Georgia.