PHOENIX—Best Western International announced that President and CEO David Kong will continue to lead the brand through 2018.
Kong was named president and CEO in 2004, and his new contract, which was unanimously supported by the Best Western Board of Directors, extends his leadership through 2018.
Under Kong’s leadership, Best Western has launched a number of initiatives, which have resonated with travelers and re-energized the brand. The launch of descriptors—Best Western, Best Western Plus, and Best Western Premier—has instilled clarity and confidence for travelers and shifted market share to Best Western hotels.
Kong also led the creation of “Best Western for a Better World” to pursue a variety of charitable and humanitarian initiatives, including a partnership with World Vision to become a sponsor of impoverished children around the world. He is deepening the brand’s relationship with the American Red Cross to provide disaster relief and has renewed Best Western’s commitment to its scholarship programs for aspiring hoteliers.
“David brings strategic thought, innovation and energy to Best Western each day, and he has helped us unlock the brand’s potential,” said Best Western Board Chairman Julie Montmaneix. “The membership is honored to have him at the helm of the Best Western brand for another five years.”
Kong is a hospitality industry leader with four decades of industry experience. He served as the 2010 chairman of the American Hotel and Lodging Association (AH&LA), and he was an appointed member of the U.S. Travel and Tourism Advisory Board. He received the 2012 Arthur Landstreet Award from AH&LA and was inducted into the University of Hawaii’s Hall of Honor in 2013.