On the Move: This Week’s Comings & Goings

This week's comings and goings

Jeff Wagner has joined Outrigger Hotels and Resorts as president and CEO. Wagner’s previous positions include executive vice president of hotel operations for Trump Hotels and senior level leadership positions with Wyndham Hotel Group. Interim CEO Scott Dalecio will now serve as executive chairman.

Here are more of this week’s notable hospitality comings and goings: 

As vice president of business development for Paramount Hotel Group, David Hale will work with investor, brand, and professional relationships to grow the third-party management group’s portfolio. Most recently, Hale was vice president of hotel business development for Spire Hospitality.

Choice Hotels welcomes Chris Leiser to the Cambria Hotels development team. Based in the Midwest to expand and grow the company’s regional portfolio, Leiser will work as director of development for Cambria Hotels.


Jeff Kmiec will manage the Nemacolin Woodlands Resort in the Laurel Highlands of Pennsylvania as chief operating officer. Kmiec is returning to Nemacolin after serving as director of sales and marketing from 2003 to 2007. In between, he was managing director for the DeSoto Hilton In Savannah, Georgia.

New vice president of operations for Benchmark Rikki Boparai has 17 years of service and leadership experience for the company. Boparai most recently served in the managing director position for the Gemstone Collection, Florida and Caribbean regions. In addition, Patrick Berwald has been named director of food and beverage for Benchmark. Berwald has two decades in executive food and beverage, and previously worked as corporate director of food and beverage for Loews Hotels.

Two Roads Hospitality welcomes Mitch Lazar as vice president of strategic partnerships, where he will oversee and manage strategic alliances, sponsorships, and brand relationships. Prior to Two Roads Hospitality, Lazar served as executive vice president of corporate development for Crafty.

Hartmut Ott will manage all aspects of the current renovation of the Cleveland Marriott Downtown at Key Center as director of hotel operations. After the renovation, Ott will direct most employees, as well as food and beverage operations and room divisions.

Rodney Morrow will oversee marketing programs and sales generation as director of sales and marketing for Carneros Resort and Spa in Napa Valley, Calif. Morrow previously held leadership positions for luxury resorts in the Bay Area, Atlanta, and Las Vegas.

Neisja Jones will be responsible for guest and employee satisfaction as well as sales and revenue generation as general manager of Mainsail Housing of Tampa, LLC. Jones will also implement the Oakwood and ExecuStay brand service standards to meet guest expectations.

Kahi Arnaud brings over 17 years of hospitality experience to Viceroy Hotel Group as director of sales and marketing at Viceroy L’Ermitage Beverly Hills. Prior to Viceroy, Arnaud was director of sales at the Fairmont Miramar Hotel & Bungalows in Santa Monica, CA.

After acquiring five properties, Playa Hotels & Resorts has promoted Howard Tanenbaum to senior vice president of global sales from vice president of global director of group and retail sales. In his new position, Tanenbaum will oversee all leisure travel sales and incentives as well as work with sales through travel agents.

Jenny Lopez will oversee banquets and receptions as director of events for The Hyatt Regency Monterey Hotel & Spa. Prior to Hyatt, Lopez was on the management team at Hilton San Jose as well as the Doubletree by Hilton San Jose. Lopez began her career at the Westin Century Plaza Hotel & Tower where she worked for 10 years.

Bobby Hotel welcomes two leaders to prepare for the property’s May opening: Jeff Gillick will plan the marketing for the hotel’s rooftop lounge and focus on small group and leisure sales as director of sales and marketing; and Steven Weaver will plan culinary programs, operating initiatives, and financial management as director of food and beverage.

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