DALLAS, Texas, Aug. 9 – Virginia hotelier Vinay Patel is the new Chair of AAHOA’s Board of Directors. Patel became chair at the conclusion of the 2021 AAHOA Convention & Trade Show which was the first major convention in Dallas since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. The convention was held at the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center.
“Serving America’s hotel owners as the AAHOA Chair is an honor, and I look forward to working with AAHOA’s nearly 20,000 members on the road to recovery,” Patel said. “Industry estimates continue to project a full recovery some time in late 2023 or 2024. Coming together as an industry is paramount to economic recovery, especially as new variants threaten to inhibit the reopening of America. I am confident that AAHOA’s enhanced advocacy and education efforts as well as the implementation of our new strategic plan will help our industry get back on track.”
Patel plans to focus on elevating the association’s advocacy and engagement at the state and local level including coordinating political education efforts with the American Hospitality Alliance. “We must be united in our advocacy efforts, especially as we engage with local governments,” Patel said. “I am also committed to broadening our outreach to lawmakers who have not necessarily engaged on the issues we champion. Building a broad coalition that supports small businesses and their employees will help draw more attention to why issues such as 1031 like-kind exchanges and the Save Hotel Jobs Act are so important to rebuilding our economy with new, good-paying jobs.”
In his inaugural address, Patel highlighted the importance of the industry’s collective efforts to keep the lights on during the pandemic as well as the necessity of remaining optimistic about the recovery and efforts to stop the spread of COVID-19. “We are in uncharted territory as a country as we emerge from this crisis. In a way, we are all letting our eyes adjust to the sunlight after spending more than a year in the darkness. It will be challenging. It will be frustrating. But AAHOA is here to help guide us as we rebuild, reinvest, and recover.”
Patel joined AAHOA in 1993 and has served on its board since 2014. AAHOA members elected him as Secretary in 2018. He is the President of Fairbrook Hotels which owns and operates eleven properties including IHG, Hilton, Radisson, Choice, and Wyndham brands. Patel also serves on the Board of Directors for the Virginia Hospitality and Tourism Association and is the president of the Herndon Hospitality Association.
“I’ve had the pleasure of working with Vinay prior to joining AAHOA, and he truly embodies the characteristics, qualities, and values that make a great Chairman,” AAHOA Interim President & CEO Ken Greene said. “I have seen him in action as a property owner and as Vice Chair of AAHOA, and I couldn’t be more excited to work with him now as the Chair. As we continue to lead AAHOA into its next chapter, I am certain his leadership, commitment, and enthusiasm will play a pivotal role in AAHOA’s future success.”