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Lending a Hand in Haiti

Posted:01/28/2011 3:51 PM

Associates from the Harbor Beach Marriott Help with Relief Efforts in Haiti It’s been a year since a devastating earthquake struck Haiti, killing more than 230,000 people.  Although we don’t have a Marriott property in Haiti, this tragedy affected many of our associates who originally came from Haiti.  Our South Florida hotels alone employ more than 1,000 associates from Haiti, most of whom have immediate family in the area affected by the earthquake.

At our Harbor Beach Marriott Resort & Spa approximately 233 of the associates are Haitian.  The hotel began their relief efforts immediately after the earthquake hit and one of the first things they did was meet with these associates.  They learned that more than 20 percent of their Haitian associates lost family members in the earthquake.  One couple lost 13 family members and another lost 10.  Many others waited to hear news about their loved ones.

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Taking a Trip Down Memory Lane

Posted:01/21/201111:58 AM

Items in Marriotts Archives When a company has been around for a long time, it’s only natural that there are a lot of historical mementos, keepsakes and records that have accumulated.  We keep a lot of these items from the past in our company archives at our headquarters in Bethesda, Maryland.  We recently refurbished our archives, made them more accessible to our associates and visitors to the building, and just a few weeks ago, I paid a visit and took a trip down memory lane.

It was great to see everything on display there.  I particularly enjoyed seeing the manual for training our waitresses, or what we call servers today, back in the mid 1930s.  There were a couple of quotes that I thought were pretty terrific.  To all our waitresses, it said, “Have a pleasant smile because it will increase your tips.”  We put a lot of focus on proper grooming back in those days.  We were particularly concerned with women manicuring their nails properly.  The manual said, “All servers should have carefully manicured nails – rounded, natural-colored and no bright nail polish.”  Back in those days, we had a lot of rules for consistency and that consistency really helped build our company into what it is today.

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Celebrating One of Marriott's Finest - Bill Shaw to Retire After 37 Years

Posted:01/11/2011 3:03 PM

Bill Shaw with Bill Marriott Since Bill Shaw joined us 37 years ago in 1974, he has been a tremendous influence in building our company to where we are today.  He became corporate controller in 1979, treasurer in 1986, chief financial officer in 1988, and president & chief operating officer in 1997.  I can’t think of a better partner than Bill as we have evolved from a hodge-podge conglomerate with at least 12 totally different businesses back in 1974 to today focus on hotels and timeshare.

Bill has been an outstanding counselor and advisor to me.  He has led the way in entering and exiting more businesses than I can even remember.  He has always been into the details.  One of our former executives – Steve Bollenbach – once told me, “Bill Shaw studies every detail of every financial proposal that comes across his desk.  When does he ever sleep?”  Whenever there has been a tough financial decision that needs to be made, Bill has dived deeply into all the numbers and has always come up with the right answers

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Climbing Up Marriott's Ranks

Posted:01/06/201110:12 AM

Erika Alexander with Bill Marriott I was recently in Atlanta to visit our hotels and hold a town hall meeting with our associates, including two very interesting and successful women.  I’d like to share their stories with you because their journeys up the ranks of our company are great examples of where hard work and determination can take you.

First I want to tell you about Erika Alexander.  She began her career as a sales manager for a Residence Inn in Herndon, Virginia in 1989.  She worked her way up to become a general manager, and was contacted by the Residence Inn brand leader at the time and asked to join the brand team at our headquarters in Bethesda, Maryland.  Erika gained great experience working on this team and was soon tasked with helping Marriott launch a new brand, TownePlace Suites.  Since then, she has held many positions in a variety of different locations and disciplines, making her an extremely well-rounded, experienced and knowledgeable contributor to our company.  Today she serves as the area vice president for 21 of our full service hotels in the southern region of the United States.

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I'm Bill Marriott, Chairman & CEO of Marriott International.

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