Women’s Hospitality Leadership Forum

Glass Ceiling Breakers Team Up with UCF Rosen College of Hospitality Management at Second Women’s Hospitality Leadership Forum

Presidents of Red Lobster, Wyndham Vacation Rentals and Youngest Master Sommelier to Share Insights

Hotel News Resource

For one day only, Friday, March 31, 2017, UCF’s Rosen College of Hospitality Management will host the 2nd Women’s Hospitality Leadership Forum, and heavy-hitters in the industry like Red Lobster’s Salli Setta, Wyndham Vacation Rentals North America’s Mary Lynn Clark and Alpana SinghMaster Sommelier, Restaurant Owner and Television host, will be there. These three women, along with other luminaries in hospitality, will speak and inspire up-and-comers in the industry.

The theme for this year’s forum is “Pathways to Success”. Attendees will have the unique opportunity to hear from Setta, who leads more than 58,000 employees, Clark who oversees 108,000 properties in nearly 600 unique vacation destinations worldwide, and Singh who became a Master Sommelier at age 21, as well as the following industry superstars:

- Melissa Boutwell, Director of Utilities & Optimization Strategies, Orange County Convention Center

-Barb BowdenComplex Managing Director Loews Sapphire Falls Resort Loews Royal Pacific Resort 

-Elizabeth Espinosa, Executive Asst. Manager of Rooms Division, The Ritz-Carlton Shanghai, Pudong

-Lillie Espinosa, Executive Career Transition Coach, Lee Hecht Harrison

- Nikole Fridenmaker, CMP & Vice President of Education, MPI Orlando

-Carolina Lacerda Vice President Hotels & Hospitality Investment Sales, Jones Lang LaSalle

- Eris SimsSenior Director of Events, NAACP

“This is an exciting and special day, bringing together women at various points in their careers to offer helpful advice, fresh perspectives on advancement, and valuable networking opportunities,“ said Dr. Cynthia Mejia, Assistant Professor at UCF Rosen College and one of the Forum’s organizers. “These top-tier women executives, who have soared to heights in the lodging, food & beverage, and event management sectors of our industry will offer the stepping stones of how to get to the top and break through the glass ceiling.”

In addition to the day’s presenters, the forum offers networking, and “speed career counseling” sessions, held throughout the day on an appointment basis, with prominent women leaders in the hospitality industry.

The UCF Rosen College Women's Hospitality Leadership Forum is open to students and women from the lodging, food & beverage, and event management sectors, and is a day filled with inspirational and purposeful content, aimed toward elevating both the current and next generation of women hospitality executives. The Forum is held on March 31, 2017, the last day of Women's History Month, which recognizes the contributions of women, especially important in the global hospitality workforce. Lunch and career inspiration are on the agenda.

To register for the 2nd Women’s Hospitality Leadership Forum, scheduled for March 31, 2017, on the UCF Rosen College of Hospitality Management campus visit http://stars.library.ucf.edu/whlf2017/

For questions or to inquire about sponsorship opportunities, please contact Dr. Cynthia Mejia at 407-903-8191 or Cynthia.Mejia@ucf.edu.  The conference is sponsored in part by UCF Global Perspectives and the National Society of Minorities in Hospitality.