Microtel Inn & Suites, the all-newly
constructed chain of budget/economy hotels, has been named official
sponsor for Ms. Wheelchair Pennsylvania 2005. Debra Charles, crowned Ms.
Wheelchair Pennsylvania 2005 at the Microtel Inn & Suites at 500
Willowbrook Lane in West Chester, will stay at Microtel hotels around the
state as she promotes disability awareness during 2005. Charles, a resident of Kutztown, Pa., was crowned Ms. Wheelchair
Pennsylvania 2005 by Lee Gutherman, president of Ms. Wheelchair
Pennsylvania, and Michelle Leahy, Ms. Wheelchair Pennsylvania 2004. The
competition, which began in 2000, is not a beauty contest, but rather
selects the most accomplished and articulate spokeswoman to educate the
public regarding persons with disabilities and make personal appearances
across the state.
“We thank Microtel hotels for their dedication to Ms. Wheelchair
Pennsylvania and commend them for providing excellent accommodations for
travelers with disabilities,” said Charles.
“We are excited to join with Ms. Wheelchair Pennsylvania and supply this
year’s winner with complimentary ADA hotel accommodations as she travels
around Pennsylvania,” said Roy E. Flora, senior vice president, franchise
operations of US Franchise Systems, Inc. (USFS), parent company of the
franchisor of the Microtel brand. “Microtel Inns & Suites is committed to
providing quality accommodations and service to travelers with
Microtel Inns & Suites has made great strides in accommodating travelers
with disabilities. The brand offers three ADA-room designs (single queen,
double queen, and suite) throughout the chain, and a consistency of
services to fit guests’ needs, including employees trained in disability
etiquette. Microtel Inns & Suites is also a sponsor of The Society for
Accessible Travel & Hospitality (SATH).
Charles suffered a stroke in 1995, and was later diagnosed with MS. With
her service dog, Oz, by her side, she now works as an independent
contractor and teaches crafts to seniors and persons with disabilities.
Her numerous volunteer activities include providing Pet Therapy at local
nursing homes, and organizing weekly bingo and shopping trips for those
who need assistance. Charles was formerly personnel manager of B.J.‘s