Andy Slater, area vice president and general manager of the new Hilton Austin, today announced the members of the hotel`s executive management team. Twelve experienced managers from top hotels across the country have been recruited to begin preparations and staffing for the January 2004 grand opening.
“The Hilton Austin will be the city`s premier hotel and that status is reflected in the all-star management team we have assembled,” said Slater. “This team has an impressive track record that will meet the city`s highest expectations.”
The executive management committee will be headed by Slater, a 25-year veteran of the hospitality industry who has been with the Hilton Family of Hotels since 1988. Slater currently serves on the board of directors of the Austin Hotel Association and the Austin Convention and Visitors Bureau. Other members of the management team are:
* HOTEL MANAGER - DOUG GEHRET—Gehret was the director of rooms at The Waldorf=Astoria® in New York City and has been with Hilton Hotels Corporation for more than 10 years. He is known for his innovations in efficiency and enhancement of guest services.
* DIRECTOR OF SALES AND MARKETING - TYLER MCDONALD—McDonald has been director of sales and marketing for the new Hilton Austin since its announcement. He previously held the same position for the Doubletree® Hotel Lincoln Centre in Dallas, and has been with Hilton for four years. He has nearly 20 years of experience in the hospitality industry.
* DIRECTOR OF FOOD & BEVERAGE - ALEXANDRE CLERC—As director of food & beverage for the Hilton New York, Clerc has repeatedly received high marks for quality and efficiency. He has been with Hilton for seven years.
* EXECUTIVE CHEF - MARK DAYANANDAN—He was executive chef at the Hilton Pittsburgh & Towers. He has demonstrated his culinary arts in Europe, Canada and the United States during his 20-year career. He has planned and executed meals for Presidents Clinton, Bush and Lady Thatcher, as well as other heads of state. Dayanandan also has overseen high-profile galas such as The Grammy® Awards, Friars Club® Celebrity Roast, Mellon Foundation and Robin Hood Foundation fundraisers, and events for the Les Amis d`Escoffier Society in New York.
* DIRECTOR OF MEETINGS AND CONVENTIONS - BILL BARAN—Baran was assistant director of meetings and conventions for The Palmer House® Hilton in Chicago and has been with Hilton for more than six years. He has nearly 20 years of industry experience and received the company recognition as Meetings & Conventions Manager of the Year for 2002.
* DIRECTOR OF HOUSEKEEPING - HEIDI BRAZIL—Brazil was director of rooms at the Red Lion Hotel in Austin and has been with Hilton for 14 years. She has nearly 20 years experience and was named Manager of the Year for the company in 1998.
* DIRECTOR OF HUMAN RESOURCES - SAM CUEVA—His career in the hospitality industry began in San Antonio 13 years ago and most recently was director of human resources at the Doubletree Hotel Paradise Valley in Scottsdale, Ariz. Cueva has been with Hilton for two years.
* DIRECTOR OF PROPERTY OPERATIONS - DAVID MEEH—Meeh is bringing 10 years of experience in facility maintenance to the new Hilton Austin. He was the director of engineering for the Barton Creek Conference Center & Resort in Austin.
* DIRECTOR OF REVENUE MANAGEMENT - CYNTHIA CESSNA—Cessna was director of revenue management at the Doubletree Hotel® & Conference Center Legacy Town Center-Plano and has been with Hilton for more than five years.
* DIRECTOR OF SALES - ALLEN ALDERMAN—Alderman was the assistant director of sales for the Hilton Palacio del Rio in San Antonio and has been with Hilton for more than 16 years. In 1999 he set the record for room nights booked by a single salesperson. He is a repeat nominee and winner of the “Excellence in Sales” award for exceeding his sales goals.
* DIRECTOR OF FINANCE - JEFF SCOTT—He was director of finance at the Doubletree Hotel & Conference Center Legacy Town Center-Plano in Plano, TX and has been with Hilton for 13 years. Scott received the Hilton Pride Award for 2002.
* DIRECTOR OF FRONT OFFICE OPERATIONS - THOMAS LONG—For three consecutive years, Long has increased guest loyalty scores as director of front office operations at the Hilton McLean at Tyson Corner in Virginia. He has been with Hilton 7 years.
Slater said the Hilton Austin will be staffed by approximately 500 persons in administration, accommodations and restaurant positions by the time the hotel opens its doors next January.
The Hilton Austin is located adjacent to the newly expanded Austin Convention Center. The hotel will provide 800 guestrooms, including 25 suites and will be equipped for both business and leisure travelers. It will feature 60,000 square feet of technologically sophisticated meeting and event space and will have the city`s largest hotel ballroom. Guests will be able to enjoy a 16,000-square-foot fitness complex, 48-foot open-air pool and whirlpool spa. The Hilton Austin will feature three fine food and beverage options: Finn & Porter? for an upscale steak and seafood experience; the Liberty Tavern?, a classic American grill reminiscent of the 1920s; and a Java Coast® premium coffee outlet. To find out more information on the Hilton Austin and the hotel`s progress, please visit our website at www.austin.hilton.com.