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Member News
Hospitality Gala
GM Breakfast
Under 30 Gateway
Governmental Affairs
Educational Foundation

March 7
IHLA Lobby Day
March 19-22
President Abraham Lincoln Springfield - a DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel
March 24
29th Annual 
Hospitality Gala
Palmer House, A Hilton Hotel
May 10 
May 17-18
Washington, D.C.
May 20-23
McCormick Place

May 23
McCormick Place

July 13  
Arlington Racecourse
Arlington Heights

August 15
Super Golf Classic
Harborside International 
Golf Center

Tuckaway Golf Club

November 1
Hyatt Regency O'Hare





Are you 21-29 years old and employed at an IHLA member hotel? Then you need to connect with other young professionals of the Gateway! Membership is free!  

To sign up, visit:

Stay Connected in IL:
IL-Women in Lodging


Not a member of I-WIL yet? Membership is  free 
to any female employed by an IHLA member hotel.

To sign up, visit:



Not yet recognized as a StayGreen Hotel or TripAdvisor GreenLeader? Complete the online Questionnaire today. 


Learn more about the benefits of becoming StayGreen.

For questions about the StayGreen Program, contact: Karrie Teel.
AHLEI Certified Guest Service Professional Designation (CGSP) Personalized Training


Dean Lane

Tom Robertson
Mark Lauer
Jerry Cataldo

Marc Gordon

Eric Bates
Jenna Beyers
John Brooke, CHA
Jerry Cataldo
*Mike Cohen
Brian Cooney, CHA
Kim Corrigan
Paul Daly
Darin Dame, CHA
Doug Dean
*Patrick Donelly
Konstantine Drosos
Mike Feigenbaum
Pierre-Louis Giacotto
Stefan Gruvberger
Kirsten Guill
*Bob Habeeb, CHA
Chris Hansen
Patrick Hatton
Dieter Heigl
Stacy Hinrichs
Greg Horeth
Steve Horve
Mark Huntley
Michelle Irvin, CHA, CFBE
David Jacobs
Fred Jones
George Jordan
Dave Kimsey
Tony Klok
Dean Lane
Mark Lauer
Damien McArdle
Dale McFarland
Michael McGilligan
Karen McGuigan
Mike McGuigan
Ginny Morrison
*Nabil Moubayed, CHA
Atul Patel, CPA, CHA
Marlene Poynder
Tom Robertson
*Jay Rosenthal
Charlie Shirk
Peter Simoncelli
*Lisa Timbo
Tommie L. Van
*Ron Vlasic
*John Wells
Jim Buczek
Rich Cialabrini   
Jim Donivan
Rick Simon 
John Tomasiewicz

*Dick Betty 
*Ed Copeland 
*Joan Geary 
*Jim Gould 
Arnie Karr 
Mike Levy 
*John Osmanski 
*Rex Parker 
*Gene Rupnik 
Andy Schwebel, CHA 
David Sowell 

*Past Chairman

Chicago Office
Marc Gordon
President & CEO
Jennifer Chase
Managing Director, Events
Susannah Flanner
Director of Membership/ Strategic Partnerships

Mark Malayter

David Miller
Director of IT
Karrie Teel
Director of Education & Communications
Springfield Office
Scott Dahl
Regional Director of Membership
Brenda Jo Jacob
Director of 
Governmental Affairs

IHLA continues to have a very busy first quarter. On February 7th, IHLA hosted our first GM Breakfast Meeting of 2017 at the Conrad Chicago with keynote speaker, Chicago Alderman, Michele Smith. Alderman Smith covered several topics but focused on the full enforcement by the City of the Short-Term Rental Ordinance that passed City Council last June. Alderman Smith will continue to be outspoken about the need for the Mayor's Department of Business Affairs and Consumer Protection to fully enforce the ordinance after the lawsuits against the ordinance are resolved by the beginning of March.

On February 22nd, IHLA hosted the
7th Annual Anniversary Event for our Under 30 Gateway Chapter at the Conrad Chicago. Hotel General Managers joined with our Under 30 Chapter members at this special event that included networking, fun, and the opportunity to listen to DePaul University Professor Nick Thomas, speak about careers and opportunities in the hospitality industry. More than 120 people attended this incredible event.

On March 7th, IHLA will host our annual Lobby Day in Springfield. Over 50 IHLA members are expected to help IHLA lobby our state legislators on issues that are critical to our industry in Illinois. The Illinois Restaurant Association and the Illinois Council of Convention and Visitor Bureaus will be joining IHLA's Lobby Day once again to give our hospitality industry a much stronger voice as we meet with legislators representing all parts of the state. Several keynote speakers will address our group, and meetings with the top leaders of the General Assembly as well as the Governor are being scheduled. Click
HERE to join us for our Lobby Day.

On March 19-22 the Illinois Governor's Conference on Travel & Tourism will take place at the President Abraham Lincoln Springfield - a DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel. If you or any of your staff members would like to attend the Governor's Conference to hear the State of the State's Tourism Address as well as other tourism industry speakers and participate in several tourism sessions, you can register for the Governor's Conference
HERE .   

On March 24th, IHLA will host our 29th Annual Hospitality Gala at the Palmer House, A Hilton Hotel in Chicago. Please plan on joining us to for this wonderful hotel industry event. Fantastic food, beverages, music, and decor will make this a memorable and fun evening for everyone who attends. Click
HERE for more information and to register. 

Finally, on May 17-18, AH&LA will be hosting its annual Legislative Action Summit (LAS) in Washington, D.C. This year, AH&LA is joining forces with the Asian American Hotel Owners Association (AAHOA) to demonstrate a strong voice for the lodging industry on Capitol Hill. Please join IHLA's large contingency of members in hearing several keynote speakers and then educating several members of the Illinois Congressional Delegation on key issues affecting our industry at the federal level. Click
HERE for more information and to register for LAS.
Thank you for your wonderful support and I look forward to seeing our members at all of these upcoming events.
Best regards,
Recent Articles of Interest


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Welcome New Hotel Members 

118 N. Jefferson St.
Chicago, IL 60661
General Manager: Dwight Miyakawa

1118 N. State St.
Chicago, IL 60610
General Manager: Tijs Klerx

Welcome New Allied Members
Marion Roger | 917-306-0046 is an online booking engine that provides access to accommodations/facilities for use during the day. Their clients range from the weary traveler who has a long layover and corporate road warrior between meetings to local suburbanites looking to enjoy a 'daycation' in the city. 
Jean-Paul Biondi | 872-207-6455
Lyft is the fastest growing rideshare company in the U.S. and is available in more than 200 cities. Lyft is preferred by drivers and passengers for its safe and friendly experience, and its commitment to effecting positive change for the future of our cities.
David Reynolds | 312-368-3990
In 1987, Red Bull not only launched a completely new product, it created a whole new product category - energy drinks. From day one, Red Bull has been giving wings to people and ideas, setting many milestones in sports and culture.
Karen Damico | 312-720-5530
TriMark is the Largest Provider of Commercial Kitchen Equipment, Restaurant Supplies & Design Services in the Nation. Delivering quality and affordable foodservice supplies, restaurant supplies, and restaurant equipment throughout the U.S., TriMark can lead you through all stages of any kitchen project. From furniture, to their vast collection of dinnerware, build your foodservice business with the finest equipment to help you achieve better results and reach your goals.
John Schene | 636-279-0419
Founded in 1952, Kemmons Wilson Insurance Group (KWIG) started alongside Holiday Inn insuring its first hotels. KWIG is a 64-year old, property and casualty insurance broker built on a philosophy of doing what is best for their clients. KWIG continues to be an expert in the hospitality / real estate and aviation industries and has also grown into a leading, full-service personal lines and commercial lines insurance consultant.

The Langham Ranked #1 Best Hotel in the USA 
Congratulations to The Langham, Chicago on ranking #1 for Best USA Hotels in 2017 according to U.S. News & World Report! And Congrats to our members who were named in the top 20 Best USA hotels: The Peninsula Chicago, Four Seasons Hotel Chicago, & Waldorf Astoria Chicago!
U.S. News & World Report ranks the best hotels by taking into account reputation among professional travel experts, guest reviews, and hotel class ratings. 1,987 scored high enough to be recognized as Best Hotels in the USA. READ MORE

Thank You 2016 IHLA Chairman, Nabil Moubayed 
During our Board of Directors meeting on February 22nd, IHLA President & CEO, Marc Gordon, and IHLA Incoming Chairman, Dean Lane, recognized IHLA Outgoing Chairman, Nabil Moubayed, for his leadership and dedication in 2016 and presented him with a recognition plaque. As Chairman, Nabil contributed a great deal to our industry and the Association, and we thank him for his support. Nabil will continue his leadership as the 2017/2018 IHLA Educational Foundation (IHLAEF) Board Chairman alongside IHLAEF Vice Chairman, Misty Johanson, DePaul University School of Hospitality Leadership Director & Driehaus College of Business Dean. 

29th Annual IHLA Hospitality Gala
An Evening of Amusement at the World's Fair
Friday, March 24, 2017 | 6:00pm
Palmer House, A Hilton Hotel |  17 E. Monroe St. | Chicago, IL 60603

The Hospitality Gala is IHLA's premier social event! Celebrate the achievements of our industry with an evening featuring exciting entertainment over spectacular food and libations. The affair begins with a lively reception and networking followed by dinner, sweet stations by Chicago's finest confectioneries, dancing and live music with SWAY Chicago, Grand Travel Raffle, and more!

On February 7th, Kelly Vohs, hosted IHLA's bi-monthly Chicagoland Council of Hotel General Managers Breakfast Meeting at the stunning new Conrad Chicago. Attendees enjoyed true VIP treatment and spectacular views from the 19th floor while networking and listening to the morning's featured speaker: 43rd Ward Alderman, Michele Smith. Alderman Smith discussed the critical need for regulation of Airbnb and answered several questions. She discussed the importance of communicating the safety of downtown Chicago in light of the recent national conversations about violence in Chicago which could affect tourism. She is optimistic that proper police training will help lower crime throughout the city over the next year. Alderman Smith emphasized that she is happy to help with issues affecting our hotels and will continue to be a strong advocate for our industry.
Next General Manager's Breakfast Meeting:
Tuesday, April 4, 2017
Hilton Chicago/Magnificent Mile Suites
8:00am Breakfast & Networking | 8:30am Program Begins
Interested in Sponsoring a 2017 Bi-monthly GM Breakfast Meeting?
Contact Susannah Flanner for more information.

IHLA Under 30 Gateway 
7th  Anniversary & GM Connect Event
The Chicago cityscape provided a perfect backdrop atop the 19th floor Atrium of the Conrad Chicago on February 22nd. Over 120 hoteliers, emerging leaders, and industry professionals networked over specialty cocktails and beverages by CH Distillery, MillerCoors, and BreakThru Beverage. The Conrad Chicago featured delicious hors d'oeuvres from their new menu, as local singer/songwriter, Britt Dignan, entertained with acoustic covers and originals. This signature event kicks off the year with a leadership-driven message, this time led by Nicholas Thomas, Ph.D., Assistant Professor & Director, The J. Willard and Alice S. Marriott Foundation Center for Student Development & Engagement & School of Hospitality Leadership, Driehaus College of Business, DePaul University. Special thanks to Conrad Chicago, Sir Grout Chicago, STR, TraknProtect, all of our raffle prize donors, and all who attended.

Join The Under 30 Gateway Illinois Chapter
Stay tuned for upcoming U30 event details and connect with us on Facebook! We encourage all 21-29 year olds working at an IHLA hotel member property to register and get involved in our state chapter via There is no charge to become a member.

Heart of the House Tour with Congressman Peter Roskam
On February 6th, Fairfield Inn & Suites Chicago Naperville, a First Hospitality Group, Inc. (FHG) property, hosted Congressman Peter Roskam, Representing the 6th District of Illinois, for a Heart of the House Tour and Hospitality Roundtable. Congressman Roskam is pictured below along with IHLA President & CEO, Marc Gordon, and the FHG team.
Heart of the House Tours are a great way to showcase a property and have Members of Congress and Members of the Illinois General Assembly meet employees and learn more about the important economic and social contributions of the hotel industry to the community and to the State.
Interested in hosting a Back of the House Tour at your property? 
Contact Brenda Jo Jacob for more information. 


Tuesday, March 7, 2017 |  Springfield, IL

IHLA is once again partnering with the Illinois Council of Convention & Visitor Bureaus (ICCVB) and the Illinois Restaurant Association (IRA) on 2017 LOBBY DAY. Our partnership with ICCVB and IRA provides a unique opportunity to show the strength, the breadth and the unity of the hospitality and tourism industry to Members of the 100th Illinois General Assembly.
Joint Opening Session Followed by Luncheon 
Meetings with Leadership & Members of 100th IL General Assembly* 
1:00pm-5:00pm | Capitol Complex 
Legislative Reception
5:00pm-7:00pm | The Sangamo Club

*If you prefer to call your Senator and/or Representative to schedule a meeting with him/her, please let Brenda Jo Jacob know who you contacted and the confirmed meeting time to avoid duplication of efforts.  
Registration Fee:   $100 per IHLA Member | Registration Deadline: 3/2/17

Attendees are responsible for their own travel plans and hotel accommodations.  To make reservations at an IHLA member hotel in Springfield, click  HERE .

Proactively Manage Natural Gas Commodity Costs
Proactively manage your natural gas commodity costs with Constellation, the Illinois Hotel & Lodging Association's endorsed energy supplier. Constellation's Minimize Volatile Pricing (MVP) program helps to manage market risks and focuses to achieve a more stable price. If you're ready to make strategic purchases for your natural gas supply, read more HERE and contact Constellation today by visiting

Recent #StayGreenSpotlight Article

2017 Scholarship Applications
The 2017 Scholarship Applications are available to download on our website HERE
Please encourage eligible family, friends, and colleagues to apply
Why Apply for an IHLAEF Scholarship?
  • Scholarship awards are excellent for enhancing resumes, and an IHLAEF Scholarship shows you have earned recognition from the industry.
  • IHLAEF Scholarship recipients are better positioned to network, gain visibility, and advance in the hospitality industry. Recipients receive complimentary tickets to IHLA's Under 30 Gateway events and Annual Hospitality Awards Luncheon with admission to the NRA Show.
  • Our scholarships are renewable, providing an opportunity to receive a minimum of $7,000 over four years.  
  • Unlike a loan, scholarship money never needs to be paid back
The deadline to apply is May 10, 2017 .

Illinois Hotel & Lodging Association
P: 312-346-3135 | F: 312-346-6036

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