Atlanta’s Hospitality Hall of Fame welcomes four new inductees as part of the 20th annual celebration Thursday, Nov. 1. Held at Flourish in Buckhead, the ceremony honors Kathleen Bertrand, Gov. Nathan Deal, Claudia Mashburn and Ben Shanley as key supporters of Atlanta’s hospitality industry.
“We are very honored to welcome these individuals to the 2018 Atlanta Hospitality Hall of Fame class,” said William Pate, president and CEO, Atlanta Convention & Visitors Bureau (ACVB). “Their contributions to Atlanta’s hospitality community have had a significant impact not only on our visitors, but also on those who call Atlanta home. We are delighted to honor their life’s work.”
Kathleen Bertrand serves as executive producer and founder of BronzeLens Film Festival. Created in 2009, BronzeLens establishes Atlanta as a destination for film and production by people of color. She also worked at Atlanta Convention & Visitors Bureau (ACVB) for 32 years, serving as senior vice president of community and governmental affairs until 2015. During her time with ACVB, Bertrand created the Diversity in Hospitality Industry Summit, was recognized as one of Atlanta’s top hospitality industry leaders by Atlanta Business Chronicle, was named to the Top 100 Black Women of Influence list by Atlanta Business League and was included on the list of Most Influential African-Americans in the Meetings and Tourism Industry by Black Meetings & Tourism Magazine. Bertrand also founded Hospitality Industry Professionals, an organization dedicated to growth of diverse leadership within the hospitality industry through education, professional development, mentoring and networking.
Elected Georgia’s 82nd governor in 2010 and reelected in 2014, Gov. Nathan Deal successfully secured Georgia’s ranking as the No. 1 state in which to do business for five consecutive years. Deal’s leadership on infrastructure, tax reform and workforce development initiatives contributed to the creation of more than 700,000 private sector jobs since 2011, set up $10 billion in transportation funding over the next 10 years and helped to make Georgia a top destination for worldwide industry leaders. Additionally, Georgia’s tourism demand grew 39 percent in 2017, the highest the state has seen in almost a decade. Last year alone, Georgia’s tourism industry generated $63.1 billion in economic impact and sustained more than 460,000 hospitality industry-related jobs across the state. During Deal’s time in office, Atlanta was selected to host the 2018 College Football Playoff National Championship, MLS All-Star Game, Super Bowl LIII, NCAA Men’s Final Four and many citywide conventions.
Claudia Mashburn serves as chief concierge for Atlanta Marriott Marquis. Mashburn began her career with Marriott brands in 1982 at Marriott Biscayne Bay in Miami as bell captain. Following a successful career in Miami, she relocated to Atlanta in 1987 and worked both the front and concierge desk at Atlanta Marriott Marquis. During Atlanta’s time hosting the Centennial Olympic Games, Mashburn organized and staffed the International Olympic Committee desk as the Marriott Marquis hotel liaison and assisted international dignitaries, executive committee members and international press. She’s received the Where Magazine Silver Plume Susan Sturgis Hyde Distinguished Service Award for her ongoing contributions to tourism, the hospitality industry and the community at-large, while also being selected to join Les Clefs d'Or concierge society for her local expertise and commitment to excellence when assisting hotel guests. Additionally, Mashburn is involved with Concierge Society of Atlanta, Atlanta Community Food Bank and Project Open Hand.
Ben Shanley retired as the senior vice president of National Foodservice Operations for Coca-Cola North America in 2018 after serving the company for 34 years. During his time with Coca-Cola, Shanley’s role included creating and articulating operational strategies and tactics and collaborating with bottlers, foodservice distributors and service providers to drive best-in-class customer value. He served as chair and executive committee member of International Foodservices Manufacturers Association and was selected as the sixth person in the organization’s history to receive the Distinguished Foodservice Executive Award for his outstanding contributions to the industry. Additionally, Shanley was honored with the Roger Milliken Career Achievement Award by GS1 US as a champion for consumer transparency, food traceability and supply chain visibility. He served on the International Foodservice Distributor Association Supplier Advisory Council and as executive committee member and past chair of Atlanta Convention & Visitors Bureau.
In addition to honoring the 2018 Hospitality Hall of Fame inductees, ACVB will present the Spurgeon Richardson Member of the Year Award. This year’s finalists are Green Media Works, Proof of the Pudding and Sensational Baskets. Millie Phillips of Proof of the Pudding will also be recognized as Volunteer of the Year.
Presenting sponsors for the event are Delta Air Lines, Inc., The Coca-Cola Company and Atlanta Business Chronicle. Individual tickets or tables are available for purchase by visiting www.atlanta.net/halloffame.
International Woodworking Fair (IWF) reached new milestones during its bi-annual expo at Georgia World Congress Center. The four-day show, held Aug. 22 – 25, gathered furniture manufacturing, architectural woodworking, custom and general woodworking professionals from across the world.
“IWF 2018 was the largest in size and scope over the last 10 years with more than 30,000 registered visitors experiencing the show,” said Jim Wulfekuhle, vice president of sales and marketing, International Woodworking Fair. “Atlanta has been the host of IWF since 1986 and our success has brought us back for over 30 years. Our 2020 theme will be IWF is ___. For us, IWF is Atlanta.”
Attendees from all 50 states and 98 countries took part in product showcases and demonstrations, and more than 70 educational sessions covering topics including manufacturing techniques, business development and production strategies. A new pavilion added to the show floor, bringing the total count to three, featured a decorative surfaces pavilion, cabinet and closets pavilion and one dedicated to wood flooring. This year’s show also hosted more than 1,000 exhibitors and the largest exhibit space in a decade.
Telepresence robotic beams – a new addition for IWF – allowed users to virtually browse and interact with exhibits via robots controlled remotely from their computers. This technology joined IWF’s Go-Pro team of individuals wearing cameras to livestream their experiences in real time via social media. IWF TV returned with daily show recaps, exhibitor interviews and seminar summaries available to view online.
“IWF’s continued success stands not only as a testament to the organization’s hard work, but also its commitment to leading the industry with new offerings for attendees,” said William Pate, president and CEO, Atlanta Convention & Visitors Bureau. “We are pleased to see them continue to grow and look forward to welcoming them back in 2020.”
Atlanta Convention & Visitors Bureau (ACVB) announces the Spurgeon Richardson Member of the Year Award, named after the organization’s former president and CEO. ACVB annually recognizes an outstanding business within the hospitality community as Member of the Year.
“Spurgeon perfectly emulates the caliber of nominees considered for Member of the Year,” said William Pate, president and CEO, ACVB. “He is a pioneer in Atlanta’s hospitality community, champion of the city and the perfect namesake of this award.”
Richardson retired from ACVB in 2008 after 17 years at the helm of the organization – the longest tenure of any president of ACVB. His career at ACVB followed 25 years with Six Flags Over Georgia, beginning in the marketing department and spending most of that time as the park’s president and general manager. He is also honored among Destinations International’s Hall of Fame, ACVB’s Hospitality Hall of Fame and will join U.S. Travel Association’s Hall of Leaders later this year.
This year’s nominees for the Spurgeon Richardson Member of the Year Award include Green Media Works, Proof of the Pudding and Sensational Baskets. The winner will be announced Nov. 1 at the 20th annual Atlanta Hospitality Hall of Fame dinner presented by Atlanta Business Chronicle, The Coca-Cola Company and Delta Air Lines.