Marriott International has confirmed that long-time senior executive Dave Grissen has decided to step down from his position as group president, the Americas.
He is expected to depart from the role towards the end of 2020 and retire from Marriott in the first quarter of 2021, after 36-years with the company.
Grissen, who has been leading the company’s Americas business for the past eleven years, oversees all of the Americas’ lodging business comprising more than 5,640 properties and a work force of 160,000 people.
“It’s hard for me to picture a Marriott without Dave Grissen, someone who has been such an integral part of this company for so long,” said Arne Sorenson, chief executive, Marriott International.
“Dave is the consummate strategist with the mind of an operator.
“He is as equally skilled at driving successful implementation as he is at looking over the horizon to identify that next, new idea.”
Grissen leads all aspects of the company’s biggest region, the Americas, which generates over two-thirds of the company’s fee revenues.
Under his leadership, Marriott’s Americas organisation has grown from 2,928 hotels to 5,640 properties today, with another 1,800 hotels in the pipeline.
Marriott also announced plans for the company’s lodging operations to be consolidated under two long-time Marriott leaders after Grissen steps down from his current role.
Under this plan, Liam Brown will take on the role of group president, North America and Craig Smith will take on the role of group president, international.
In his new role, Smith will oversee all non-North American operations for Marriott including the Asia Pacific, Europe, Middle East & Africa and Caribbean & Latin America regions.
A 32-year Marriott veteran, he is currently group president, Asia Pacific.
Brown is currently group president, Europe, Middle East & Africa (EMEA).
A 30-year Marriott veteran, he has spent the majority of his career working in the United States.
“The changes we are making will help define a new era for our organisation – one that will accelerate our global aspirations,” said Sorenson.
“We are lucky to have such a deep executive bench to draw from – both Craig and Liam are superbly talented and will bring tremendous experience to these roles.”