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Jumeirah Chairman to sit on HEC panel

Gerald Lawless, executive chairman of Jumeirah Group, will be a featured panelist at Hotel Ezra Cornell (HEC) in April, at the Cornell University School of Hotel Administration.

Lawless joined the Dubai-based Jumeirah as managing director in 1997 to develop a hospitality portfolio that would deliver a completely unique experience to guests. Jumeirah Beach Hotel, Wild Wadi Water Park, and Burj Al Arab quickly set the standard for the regional and international growth to follow.

Joining Lawless on the HEC panel will be Nancy Johnson, executive vice president & chief development officer, Carlson Hotels Worldwide; Jorge Boone, senior vice president, business development, Group RCI; and Steve Haggerty, global head real estate & development, Hyatt. The group will explore current and future investment activities of international hospitality companies and discuss how prominent hotel brands are crossing global borders. The School of Hotel Administration is excited to have Lawless at HEC because of his exceptional industry experiences, which will create an interesting event for the guests and a distinguished learning opportunity for students.

HEC, an 86-year tradition, is a student-run hospitality conference for leaders of the industry. Comprised of educational seminars, leisure activities, and food and beverage events, the weekend strikes a thoughtful balance between education and entertainment. Through HEC, students practice the skills they have learned in the classroom and showcase their talents to industry professionals.

This year, HEC will focus on the hospitality industry as a central point for concepts of globalization to take root. Within the evolving global marketplace, hospitality plays a critical role in how ideas are transferred, economies are shared, and cultures are reinvented. During the weekend, the diverse program will explore how hospitality companies need to consider the implications of the global context in which they operate. The conference will be held April 7-10, 2011, at the Cornell School of Hotel Administration in Ithaca, NY. All are invited.