THE WOMEN OF HOSPITALITY
A TRIBUTE TO INFLUENTIAL LADIES
Lisa Holladay, VP & Global Brand Leader, Ritz-Carlton, St. Regis, Ritz-Carlton Reserve, Bulgari
The head of the Ritz-Carlton, St. Regis Hotels & Resorts, Ritz-Carlton Reserve and Bulgari Hotels & Resorts brands spent 12 years “growing up” at Mercedes-Benz USA before joining the hotel industry—and she is right where she wants to be. “My current position is my dream job,” she said. “With my role at Marriott International, I’m fortunate to be able to combine my passion for travel and luxury brands. I made the change from the automotive industry to hospitality because I believe in the power of travel to break down barriers and build connections with others.”
Sonia Cheng, CEO, Rosewood Hotel Group
Sonia Cheng is not only the leader of Rosewood Hotel Group, she’s also executive director of New World Development Company and New World China Land, which makes up one of the largest conglomerates in Hong Kong. Though there is a lot going on under the hood, Cheng said Rosewood’s driving philosophy is “relationship hospitality” so it is important to her to stay personal in all aspects of the business.
Melissa Maher, SVP, Global Partner Group, Expedia, Inc.
Melissa Maher, a high-ranking leader at Expedia, Inc., has made it a personal goal of hers to elevate women in leadership within the hospitality and tech industries. She’s at the forefront of a new program at Expedia, Leading For Change, with those exact goals. “Right now we are focusing internally on some cool initiatives as well as processes and procedures to help women within [Expedia],” Maher said.
Heather Balsley, SVP, Americas Branding & Marketing, InterContinental Hotels Group
At IHG, Heather Balsley leads brand management, loyalty, partnerships, marketing and brand operations for the company’s Americas region, working with IHG’s global brand leadership and Americas functional teams to develop and deliver localized brand strategies. Inspiration and influence, Balsley said, are at the core of her job.
Dorothy Dowling, Chief Marketing Officer, Best Western Hotels & Resorts
As the person responsible for delivering the voice of a hotel brand to guests, Dorothy Dowling said she has to stay on top of emerging trends, technologies and the interests of the general public to keep hotels current. She makes use of modern technology in her daily life to have a better understanding of what it is guests are using at home -such as Alexa, Google Home and Xbox- to paint a picture of how these comforts can be put to use on the road.