Mr. Huckestein, who delivered the keynote address at this year's Annual Congress, was elected IH&RA President at the association's Annual General Assembly and announced at the IH&RA Congress Final Gala Dinner on 30 October before over 400 delegates from the international and Chinese hotel and restaurant industry. Also elected in the role of IH&RA Vice President Hotels is Ghassan Aïdi, President, Cham Palaces & Hotels and in the role of IH&RA Vice President - Restaurants is Bruce C. Cotton, Director Emeritus, National Restaurant Association.
Dieter Huckestein oversees all operations, marketing and development of the Conrad brand of luxury hotels on a worldwide basis. His wealth of extensive international operations experience at both Hilton International and Hilton Hotels Corporation continues to serve him well in his capacity as President of the Hilton Global Alliance, responsible for all operational aspects of Hilton Hotels Corporation's strategic alliance with Hilton International.
Mr. Huckestein said "I am truly honored to have been elected IH&RA President and thank IH&RA members for their vote of confidence. I look forward to serving as President of this global hotel and restaurant association and to actively work to enhance member services and to ensure that IH&RA continues to play its important role as a global leader in representing and defending the hospitality industry worldwide."
In addition to his role as Chairman and CEO of Conrad Hotels and President of the Hilton Global Alliance of Conrad Hotels, Dieter Huckestein brings extensive experience in association leadership. He served as the 2004 Chairman of the AH&LA, the American Hotel & Lodging Association, and remains a member of the AH&LA Chairman's CEO Council, and on the board of the AH&LA Educational Institute. Joe McInerney, AH&LA President, was in Beijing to welcome Dieter Huckestein in his new role as IH&RA President. "Dieter Huckestein has been a leader and visionary for AH&LA throughout his term and he will contribute greatly to IH&RA in his capacity as President."
IH&RA, founded in 1946, is the only global business organization representing the hospitality industry worldwide. Its members are national hotel and restaurant associations, international and national hotel and restaurant chains, independent operators and worldwide partners including hospitality suppliers, consultants, educators and the media. Officially recognized by the United Nations, IH&RA is an active international observer that identifies threats, sends early warning signals and mounts opposition to all initiatives that could lead to costly legislation and unnecessary regulation for this industry.
Dieter Huckestein was decorated IH&RA President by his predecessor 2005 President, Mr. John Bell, the former CEO of the Caribbean Hotels Association.
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