The American Hotel & Lodging Association’s (AH&LA) Under 30 Gateway, launched on July 1, 2008, is celebrating its inaugural year by giving nonmembers a special $50 join rate, and recognizing one of its most active members. In its first year, the Gateway – the exclusive membership category for young hospitality professionals under age 30 – has established itself as the fastest-growing membership initiative of AH&LA with approximately 400 members.
AH&LA is offering young professionals whose companies are not AH&LA members a special $50/year individual join rate for the month of July. This offer is available online at www.ahla.com/Gateway, valid July 1-31 with reference code “BDAY.” Employees of AH&LA member companies are still eligible to join the Gateway for free.
Last week at the association’s Summer Summit, the Gateway designated its first ever Stevan Porter Emerging Hospitality Leader of the Year award to Randall Williams, Tampa-based area general manager for the Roberts Hotels Group. The creation of this annual award coincided with the launch of the Gateway and Porter’s untimely death. As a testament to his long list of accomplishments, the honor recognizes a young Gateway member who exemplifies Porter’s traits: superior dedication to improving the industry, leadership, fresh personal and professional perspectives, and a devotion to community service. Williams has been influential on AH&LA’s Under 30 Council, Multicultural & Diversity Advisory Council, and is an active member of numerous other industry committees and boards.
The Gateway has implemented many programs throughout its inaugural year: a comprehensive mentorship program; its successful newsletter, The Gate; numerous virtual and in-person networking and professional development events; and the establishment of several state Gateway chapters. Gateway initiatives are driven by AH&LA’s Under 30 Council, comprised of 29 of the best and most dedicated hospitality professionals.