AH&LA formally unveiled plans to merge its Educational Institute and the American Hotel & Lodging Foundation into a single entity during its 90th annual conference and leadership forum in Philadelphia this week. The new body, to be called the American Hotel & Lodging Educational Foundation, will be led by AH&LA president/CEO Joe McInerney, who will assume the title of AH&LEF’s CEO; EI president Tony Marshall will serve as COO. Doug Viehland, president of AH&LF, will depart the association at month’s end to pursue other professional opportunities.
McInerney told attendees that the merger, which had been under consideration for the past two years, will create “a more streamlined organization to better serve the needs of our members.” The two entities will continue to operate separately in the near term, but under the new name. The “trading name” of EI will continue to be used to market the institute’s products and services, while all funds contributed to the foundation “will be used for what they were solicited for; they will not be diverted to any other function,” McInerney said.