In 1989 at the National Restaurant Show in Chicago, a $100,000 check was presented by Carl T. Motteck (BA ’51), president of Hilton Hotels Corporation, to what was then called the School of Hotel, Restaurant and Institutional Management. This represented the first installment in a $500,000 commitment by Hilton Hotels Corporation to create the Hilton Hotels Professor of Hospitality Financial Management.
Ray Schmidgall was selected as the first Hilton Hotels Professor of Hospitality Financial Management in 1989. Schmidgall conceived of the idea of a “Hilton Lecture Series,” which each year would address a single, topical issue facing the hospitality industry from both the hospitality industry’s and the hospitality academy’s perspectives. This innovative lecture series began in 1991 and continues today to bring leading hospitality experts to campus each fall.
October 17-18, 2019
Topic: Hotel Asset Management
Academic and Industry Speakers:
Over the course of Hilton Lecture Series, industry experts, Nevena Erlingis (BA ’14), Sean Hennessey, and Chad Sorensen addressed hotel asset management practices and principles. Several students and faculty attended the sessions to learn about the role of asset managers in the hospitality industry. A main takeaway for junior, Courtney Miars, was the importance of “being good stewards of the property and driving the future value of the asset beyond the revenues and expenses.” The two-day event also included a welcome reception and dinner at the University Club of MSU where students in the Real Estate Investment Management Minor had the opportunity to connect with the distinguished speakers.
October 18-19, 2018
Topic: Women in Financial Leadership
Academic and Industry Speakers:
October 12-13, 2017
Topic: Print Media
Academic Speaker: Eliza Selig, Director of Communication at Hospitality Financial and Technology Professionals.
As the director of communications for Hospitality Financial and Technology Professionals (HFTP), a nonprofit, international association, she manages and produces a wide variety of communication, educational and marketing projects. Selig is the in-house editor, author, manager, consultant and designer for all communications projects, helping the organization produce successful publications that meet the organization’s goals.
Industry Speaker: Atul Sheel, Ph.D., Graduate Program Director and Associate Professor of Finance at University of Massachusetts (Isenberg School of Management)
Sheel received his Ph.D. in business administration (finance) from the University of Massachusetts. He has several years of quality executive experience in the hospitality industry. He has published several refereed papers in national and international refereed journals, including the Cornell Hotel and Restaurant Administration Quarterly, Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Research, Journal of Hospitality Financial Management, Journal of Quality Assurance in Hospitality and Tourism, and Hospitality Research Journal. He is the editor of the Journal of Hospitality Financial Management and serves on the editorial review board of several important refereed journals, including the Cornell Hospitality Quarterly, International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, International Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Administration, the Journal of Food Service Business Research, and the UNLV Journal of Hospitality, Tourism and Leisure Science.
October 8-9, 2015
Topic: The “Art” of the Deal
Industry Speaker: This year Matthew Sparks (B.A. ’94) spoke to undergraduates on the sale of the Waldorf Astoria New York in early 2015. Sparks is the senior vice president of luxury, lifestyle and full-service development for Hilton Worldwide, leading the company’s corporate and luxury brand growth and development in North America. Hilton’s luxury brands include both the Waldorf Astoria Hotels & Resorts and Conrad Hotels & Resorts brands.
Academic Speaker: John O’Neill, professor and director of the Center for Hospitality Real Estate Strategy at Penn State University, addressed graduate students, faculty and staff, sharing a paper on the sale of hotels, exploring when and why investors sell.
September 18-19, 2014
Topic: Globalization Revisited
Industry Speaker: Fred Kleisner (B.A. ’66), independent director of publicly held companies including Kindred Healthcare and Apollo Residential Mortgage, as well as Caesars Entertainment
Academic Speaker: Chekitan S. Dev, associate professor of strategic marketing and brand management in the School of Hotel Administration at Cornell University
October 17-18, 2013
Topic: Think Like the Owner
Academic and Industry Speakers:
October 4-5, 2012
Topic: The Evolution of the Uniform System of Accounts for the Lodging Industry
September 29-30, 2011
Topic: International Financial Reporting Standards
Industry Speaker: Arlene Ramirez, Controller of the Woodlands, shared her vast knowledge of IFRS with students.
Academic Speaker: Ersem Karadag, Robert Morris University, discussed his research regarding this soon-to-be-required financial reporting system for U.S. public companies.
September 30 – October 1, 2010
Topic: Research perspective on the hospitality accounting profession
Industry Speaker: Lucinda Hart, COO, HFTP
Academic Speaker: Gordon Potter, professor, Cornell
Topic: Club Management
Industry Speaker: James B. Singerling, CCM, CEO of Club Managers Association of America (CMAA)
Academic Speaker: Dr. Jason P. Koenigsfeld, senior vice president of professional development of CMAA
Two panels of industry experts addressed what they viewed as pressing issues facing their industry. One panel of COOs/GMs covered “Revenue Growth Strategies for the Future,” with Rick Bayliss (B.A. ’85), CCM, CCE, chief operating officer of The Lost Tree Club in North Palm Beach, Florida, and national director on the board of the CMAA, serving as moderator. Panel members included Jeff Anderson (B.A. ’90), CCM, general manager of the Traverse City Golf & Country Club; Todd Beals, chief operating officer of the Detroit Golf Club; and Richard Bruner, general manager of the University Club of MSU.
The panel of controllers discussed “Cost Control Strategies for Tough Times” with Tom Smith, CHAE, chief financial officer of the Westmoor Country Club, serving as moderator. Panel members included Frank Agnello (B.A. ’80), controller of the Wyndgate Country Club; Cheryl Brennan, controller of the Bloomfield Hills Country Club; and Rosemarie Harmon, controller of the University Club of MSU.
Both groups presented creative ideas, and both concluded that early student involvement in the CMAA is critical to the future of the club industry.
Topic: Revenue Management
Academic Speaker: Stowe Shoemaker, associate dean of research and Donald Hubbs professor, Conrad N. Hilton College, University of Houston.
Topic: Statistical Research Methodology
Topic: Hospitality Executive Development Summit
Topic: Global Real Estate Development
Industry Speaker: Hugh A. Andrews (B.A. ’71, MBA ’72), founder and president, International Hospitality Enterprises, Inc.
Academic Speaker: Allen Toman, professor of real estate and finance, École hôtelière de Lausanne
Topic: Foodservice Leadership
Industry Speaker: Philip J. Hickey, Jr. (B.A. ’77), chairman and CEO, RARE Hospitality International, Inc.
Academic Speaker: William Fisher, Darden Eminent Scholar in Restaurant Management, Rosen School of Hospitality Management, University of Central Florida
Topic: Asset Management
Industry Speaker: David Johnstone (B.A. ’79), senior vice president, Millerglobal Properties LLC
Academic Speaker: Jack Corgil, professor, School of Hotel Administration, Cornell University
Topic: Financial Management Education
Industry Speaker: Jim Burba (B.A. ’77), Vice President/Worldwide Director of Advising Services, Wimberly Allison Tong & Goo
Agnes DeFranco, interim dean, Hilton College of Hotel and Restaurant Management, University of Houston
Topic: The Future of Hospitality Education
Dean of the Summit: W. Terry Umbreit (B.A. ’63), Director – Hotel and Restaurant Administration, Washington State University
Industry Speaker: Professor Donald I. Smith, formerly CEO of Shakey’s Pizza, and former director of MSU’s School of Hotel, Restaurant and Institutional Management (HRIM)
Academic Speaker: William Lazer, professor emeritus of Michigan State University and distinguished research Scholar and Sensormatic chair in marketing at Florida Atlantic University
Topic: Quality and Ethics
Industry Speaker: Patrick Mene, vice president of quality, The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company, L.L.C.
Academic Speaker: Steve Hall (MBA ’66), founder and director, International Institute of Quality & Ethics in Service and Tourism
Topic: Hospitality Technology
Industry Speaker: Francis J. Durocher, senior vice president and CIO, Hilton Hotels Corporation
Academic Speaker: Mark Hamilton, associate professor, Conrad N. Hilton College of Hotel and Restaurant Management, University of Houston
Topic: Hotel Industry Statistics
Academic Speaker: Jan DeRoos, assistant professor, School of Hotel Administration, Cornell University
Topic: Strategic Planning
Industry Speaker: Morris Lasky, president, Lodging Unlimited, Inc.
Academic Speaker: Michael D. Olsen (B.A. ’67, MBA ’73), professor, Department of Hospitality and Tourism Management, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
Topic: Mergers and Acquisitions
Industry Speaker: Steven N. Kisielica (B.A. ’92), director of development, Geller and Co.
Academic Speaker: Francis A. Kwansa, associate professor, School of Hotel, Restaurant and Institutional Management, University of Delaware
Industry Speaker: Peggy A. Berg (B.A. ’78), president of the Highland Group
Academic Speaker: Paul Beals, director and professor, Statler Hotel Management Program, Canisius College
Topic: Hospitality Valuation
Industry Speaker: Stephen Rushmore, president, Hospitality Valuation Services
Academic Speaker: Rick Andrew, associate professor of hospitality finance, Penn State University
Topic: Trends in Franchising
Academic Speaker: Mahmood Kahn, professor and head, Department of Hospitality and Tourism Management, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
Industry Speaker: Carl T. Mottek (B.A. ’51), president, Hilton Hotels Division
Academic Speaker: Florence Berger, professor, School of Hotel Administration, Cornell University
Industry Speakers: William C. Lebo, senior vice president and general counsel, Hilton Hotels Corporation
Academic Speaker: David L. Whitney, associate professor, Department of Marketing and Hospitality Services Administration, Central Michigan University
Industry Speakers: Eric M. Hilton, president, Conrad Hotels International
Academic Speaker: Robert Wilson, professor, Department of Hotel, Restaurant and Travel Administration, University of Massachusetts-Amherst