HFTP 2022 Paragon Award Recipient Daniel Conti, Jr., CHAE+ — Affiliation and Business Mentor

2022 HFTP Paragon Award Daniel Conti

This month on the 2022 HFTP Annual Conference, HFTP World Previous President Daniel N. Conti, Jr., CHAE+ will probably be honored because the 2022 Paragon Award recipient. He was chosen for his unwavering assist of the affiliation and substantial knowledge-sharing contributions as a frequent speaker and mentor to fellow HFTP members. Daniel is the chief monetary officer for Jupiter Island Holdings, Inc. in Hobe Sound, Florida USA. He has been a member of HFTP for 20 years and served in a number of affiliation management positions together with because the 2014–2015 HFTP World President.

To be taught extra about Daniel and his involvement in HFTP, we requested him just a few questions.

When did you first know you needed to be within the hospitality business and what’s your favourite half?

I first began within the hospitality business whereas in highschool in New Jersey. Whereas most individuals my age have been stocking cabinets within the grocery retailer or pumping gasoline (no, you may’t pump your individual gasoline in New Jersey), I needed to do one thing that may give me sensible work expertise. A buddy working at an Embassy Suites, alerted me to a place there. I received the job and I labored on the lodge via highschool and school. I used to be a entrance desk clerk, breakfast prepare dinner, evening auditor, labored in reservations and at 18, even was the weekend supervisor on obligation each Friday, Saturday and Sunday evening.

For some purpose I simply fell in love with hospitality and even after graduating from school, I ended proper again right here. I attempted just a few different industries, as soon as as a controller for an auto glass distributor and one other as controller and supervisor of Applegate Farms. Then shortly after getting married and transferring to Florida, I took an assistant controller place at Frenchman’s Creek Nation Membership and I fell in love with the membership sector. Working in each resorts and golf equipment has actually pushed my connection and keenness for the business.

My favourite a part of working in hospitality is all of the folks I’ve met — people from around the globe together with Australia, the Netherlands, Switzerland, England, Canada, the USA and the Caribbean. Many have turn out to be mates who’ve molded my profession and life. Being in an business that allows me to fulfill and achieve information from a various group of people has been very thrilling. Hospitality is such a enjoyable business to be part of and I do not assume I might get pleasure from doing what I do almost as a lot in a distinct business.

How have been you first launched to HFTP?

After I received my first nation membership job at Frenchman’s Creek, my boss Mark Engebretson inspired me to affix HFTP, and I joined the HFTP Gold Price Chapter. Then once I switched jobs, I grew to become a member of the HFTP Treasure Coast Chapter. That’s once I grew to become closely concerned with the affiliation. I used to be a chapter president, chaired the Florida Regional and went to a number of HFTP Management Academy occasions. This exercise led me to volunteer on the HFTP World degree, serving on committees and getting a director place on the HFTP World Board. Nevertheless, it began with going to a neighborhood chapter assembly and networking with my friends.

Daniel Conti’s set up as HFTP World President on October 24, 2014
on the HFTP Annual Conference in New Orleans, La. USA

What do you discover priceless about your membership with HFTP?

Every time anybody asks me why I belong to HFTP or what makes it so particular, I at all times find yourself speaking in regards to the networking. The folks I’ve met and the sources and alternatives which have opened-up to me are too quite a few to rely. Via HFTP, I’ve gained a superb, casual training from friends who’ve shared their information and experience. The affiliation has at all times been part of my skilled development and it’s fairly astonishing to consider being a 17-year-old entrance desk clerk in a lodge to now being the CFO for Jupiter Island. It has been an attention-grabbing journey.

It has been seven years because you served as HFTP World President. What have you ever achieved to stay energetic within the affiliation? How do you proceed to contribute to HFTP?

A couple of years in the past, the World Govt Committee started to assign World Previous President liaisons to the HFTP World committees. This was an vital step in preserving them related and supportive of the affiliation and to proceed to attract from their priceless information. Due to this, I proceed to serve on numerous committees together with this yr’s Annual Conference Training Advisory Council.

And as most that know me, if you happen to put me on a committee, I will not be quiet. I’m going to offer you my opinion, I’m going to problem the established order and I’m going to attempt to push us to make higher choices for the business and affiliation. I proceed to do this. Frank Wolfe in all probability regrets the day he put Tom Smith (additionally a World Previous President) and I on a process drive collectively as a result of he has been caught listening to our opinions ever since.

As a membership skilled, what are a number of the prime challenges you and your colleagues are going through? How do you strategy them?

Over the previous few years the hospitality business has needed to actually pivot and regulate to a altering setting. The membership world did not get harm as dangerous from the pandemic because the lodge sector did. However now, many have left the business, and we face a scarcity of certified workers.

The problem is that you could’t work in hospitality from your house workplace or work remotely for a majority of the roles in our business. And so discovering workers, preventing to maintain workers, contending with rising wage charges and recruiting proceed to be a battle. To deal with these points, we now have to take a look at how we’re attracting and retaining expertise. Along with HR points, we’re additionally having to determine tips on how to pay for rising mounted prices and tips on how to fund capital tasks to maintain our golf equipment viable and engaging to members. It takes fixed effort and focus for our complete staff.

Inform us a memorable skilled expertise that you’ll at all times keep in mind.

There are such a lot of nice issues I’ve been in a position to take part in and be part of within the business and affiliation. Right here is one which stands out in my reminiscence.

The primary occurred once I was with the HFTP World Govt Committee in Australia. We have been going to meet-up and have dinner with long-time HFTP member and Australia-native Ted Horner and his spouse. The journey to dinner concerned taking a ferry and as we have been about to hop on, we notice that Arlene Ramirez was the one one in our group with a sound ticket. I inform everybody I’ll run and purchase us tickets.

I run to get the tickets and run again to make the ferry. After I get again, I go searching and ask the place Arlene is. Lyle Worthington and Scot Campbell each report that they advised her to get on the ferry and that we might take the following one. There was one small drawback: the ferry she received on was the unsuitable one. All of us hop on the next ferry, which was the right one, and head to dinner. On the identical time we have been looking for Arlene and get her to the restaurant. For sure, she confirmed up about an hour late to dinner and to this present day she nonetheless believes we have been attempting to do away with her.

Do you will have any pursuits exterior your career that your fellow HFTP mates may not find out about?

I assume some folks know I’m fairly the animal lover, however many do not know that my spouse and I feed feral cats each evening. We attempt to get all of them caught and glued, and if potential, adopted. But when they aren’t adoptable we put them again out the place they have been discovered and we feed them nightly. If one will get harm, we catch it and produce it to the vet. Or if they’ve kittens earlier than we get them mounted, we attempt to catch the kittens and get them adopted. And naturally, after we discover one that’s tremendous pleasant, I find yourself adopting it myself. Michelle even jokes that I’m the cat whisperer as a result of I appear to get these wild cats to relax and let me contact them. I’m a agency believer that how an individual treats animals is a mirrored image about who they’re as a human.

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