Best Western International, Inc. has announced the promotions of three members of the senior management team: Anupam Narayan to senior vice president and chief financial officer; Mary Beth Knight to vice president of e-commerce and intermediary marketing, and Maureen Murphy Kieffer to vice president of information services. The promotions are effective immediately according to James P. Evans, Best Western International president and chief executive officer.
Anupam Narayan, a 20-year hotel executive, joined Best Western in October of 1998 as vice president and cfo. Narayan began his career at Holiday Inns Inc. and has held senior management positions in finance with Doubletree Hotels, Promus, now Hilton (NYSE:HLT), and Red Lion Hotels. Narayan has an extensive background in initial public offerings, development, planning, real estate debt financing and mergers and acquisitions. He is a member of the Financial Executives Institute, Urban Land Institute and the American Hotel & Motel Association. Narayan is a graduate of the Indian Institute of Technology (Kanpur) and received an MBA at the University of Florida in 1981. At Best Western his areas of responsibility include finance, accounting, treasury, budgeting, strategic planning, legal and purchasing.
Mary Beth Knight most recently held the position of managing director of intermediary and interactive marketing. With 19 years of hotel experience, Knight joined Best Western in March of 1993 as manager of travel agent marketing and was promoted to director of global distribution and travel agent marketing. In addition, she has held various marketing positions with Doubletree Hotels, Ramada International and Servico Management Corporation. As vice president of e-commerce and intermediary marketing, Knight is charged with further developing Best Western’s rapidly growing worldwide internet reservations business and e-commerce marketing channels. In her new position, she will report to CIO, Michael Kistner, and will also remain a key member of Best Western’s marketing team.
Maureen Murphy Kieffer served as managing director of applications development prior to her promotion to vice president of information services. Murphy Kieffer has 17 years of hospitality industry experience in the management of central reservations systems, support services and technical design. She joined Best Western in September of 1994 as systems integration manager of information systems and was promoted to director of applications development in 1995. Prior to Best Western, she held senior positions with Global-Res Inc., Choice Hotels International (NYSE:CHH) and Ramada Inc. In her new position, she is responsible for all Best Western International software development, corporate and property help desks, quality assurance, and the project office. Murphy Kieffer will also report to Kistner.
“Anupam, Mary Beth and Maureen have all exhibited extraordinary leadership, and as a result, have contributed to a stronger, more competitive Best Western organization,” said Evans. “These three individuals are representative of the great talent we have on our team that will afford us even greater opportunities as we continue to expand the largest hotel chain in the world,” he added.