By: Mark Pate Sr., CHAE, CHTP, MBA, HFTP International President
What an expertise these previous two years have been serving as HFTP International President. There are such a lot of adjectives to explain this distinctive epoch inside HFTP’s 70-year historical past — difficult, tumultuous, stunning, spectacular, inspiring — and I’m fairly proud to have been part of it.
Taking over the place as HFTP International President isn’t one the place you might be abruptly positioned with out a lot foreknowledge. However relatively the HFTP management journey is constructed over years once you acquire an understanding of the affiliation’s strategic targets and path. Normally it begins with a Director place on the HFTP International Board. And for those who select to use and are chosen, you’re employed by means of the three positions on the Government Committee resulting in President.
I’m explaining this as a result of it was the various hours collaborating as an HFTP chief, the steerage of my predecessors and the views of this management group that have been key to my functionality to steer our affiliation throughout a really extraordinary interval.
No Success With no Crew
Earlier than persevering with, I wish to take a second to thank the HFTP International Board of Administrators for his or her willingness to volunteer their time and experience — even extending their allotted time serving on the Board. I additionally need to lengthen gratitude to my mentors on the chief committee: Michael Levie, CHTP, Scott Campbell, CHTP and Timothy Nauss, CHAE+ who have been on the Government Committee after I began as secretary. And serving alongside me these previous two years are Neil Foster, CHTP; Stephanie Anderson, CHAE, CPA, CGMA and Justin Taillon, Ph.D., CHTP. Thanks to every of you.
I can not go on with out recognizing the person who retains the entire gears transferring. That’s HFTP CEO Frank Wolfe, CAE, FIH, who celebrated his 30th yr at HFTP in 2021. We’re blessed to have such a devoted particular person operating the affiliation. Frank’s dedication and revolutionary pondering proceed to amaze me. Thanks Frank.
Unknowns and Pivots
My set up as HFTP President was very a lot a illustration of the time. It was a part of HFTP’s first digital Annual Enterprise Assembly in October 2020. It was fairly enjoyable and completed at a second after we have been all grateful to work together with fellow HFTP members regardless the way it was completed.
By this time, the HFTP workforce had already turn into fairly skilled with the digital presentation format. As we must always all keep in mind – as a result of it wasn’t so way back – HFTP was already offering digital Zoom Hangouts for the reason that Spring of that yr.
Then after we could not host an in-person HITEC for the primary time in many years, the primary ever CYBER HITEC was held. I do not suppose I can adequately categorical how thrilling it was for me. I used to be amazed by the keynote audio system, the outstanding schooling periods, the high-tech cubicles of our enterprise companions. All skilled from my very own laptop display.
In the beginning of my time period as President we needed to proceed when there have been nonetheless a number of unknowns — particularly whether or not we might truly return to the in-person, networking gatherings that so lots of our stakeholders get pleasure from. Due to this, the HFTP International workforce maintained a powerful digital schooling program that has helped our members and stakeholders be taught and converse. This system stays and the choices have been plentiful, numerous and informative. Not solely are they accessible dwell and without spending a dime, however previous periods are saved in an archive to accommodate everybody’s schedules.
A Return to What We Know
Fortunately, we have been capable of return, with warning, to in-person occasions in 2021. Beginning with the March 2021 Membership Summit in Fort Lauderdale, Florida and following up that Fall with the co-located HITEC 2021 and HFTP Annual Conference in Dallas, Texas. And because the Pandemic eased and the business rebounded, so has our in-person programming.
I’m happy that we simply celebrated the 50th Anniversary of HITEC in Orlando this previous June. The outcomes have been beautiful. There have been over 6,100 and numerous feedback on how helpful the expertise was. Simply perusing my LinkedIn feed that week, you’ll’ve thought there was nothing else happening however HITEC. An illustration of how effectively our enterprise companions considered the present, already 83 % of the 2023 exhibit corridor ground is reserved.
Launching into its subsequent period, HFTP plans to spend money on the energy of this established occasion. Particularly with the announcement of a brand-new, competing occasion on the identical days of HITEC North America in 2023. We’re assured in HITEC and already promising are the distinctive places for the following two years: Toronto in 2023 and Charlotte, North Carolina in 2024.
Additionally gratifying is the present of help for HFTP and HITEC by our allied associations. Supporting HFTP are HSMAI — Hospitality Gross sales and Advertising Affiliation Worldwide Americas; the Worldwide Hospitality Info Know-how Affiliation — iHITA; Worldwide Council on Lodge, Restaurant, and Institutional Training — ICHRIE; Asian American Lodge House owners Affiliation — AAHOA; Girls Main Journey and Hospitality — WLT&H; Membership Administration Affiliation of America — CMAA; and the Caribbean Lodge and Tourism Affiliation — CHTA. Along with our companions we’ll collaborate to share information for the betterment of the business.
My involvement in what has simply been described wouldn’t be a actuality with out my having taken a step to volunteer with HFTP. My closing request as president is to ask you to volunteer for HFTP. It is time to take your ability set to an entire new degree – volunteering to serve on any of the wonderful councils and committees that assist get the work of HFTP completed. By serving on a council, you’ll meet a number of the most gifted individuals within the hospitality business. Additionally, you will be working with the outstanding HFTP International workforce – the women and men who make HFTP work each day.
I’ve had the privilege to serve on the CHAE (Licensed Hospitality Accountant Government) and CHTP (Licensed Hospitality Know-how Skilled) Advisory Councils, the Younger Professionals Council, the HITEC Advisory Council, the HFTP Annual Conference Training Advisory Council, the Training Advisory Council and the Editorial Evaluation Council that has been shaped over time. It’s by serving on these councils that you’re launched to the interior workings of HFTP and face the challenges that include transferring a one-of-a-kind affiliation like HFTP ahead.
Thanks to the entire HFTP members and stakeholders. This has been an expertise of a lifetime and I stay up for remaining concerned with the affiliation.
Mark Pate Sr., CHAE, CHTP, MBA is the HFTP International Board President and assistant controller & IT director for Highpointe Lodge Company.