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School of Hospitality Management

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Special Section: School of Hospitality Management

School of Hospitality Management

75th Anniversary

The School of Hospitality Management has reached a significant milestone this year; it is celebrating seventy-five years since its inception. A marquee event regarding the occasion was held on Blue-White weekend this past April. At the event, in addition to commemorating the school’s anniversary, Penn State Hotel & Restaurant Society (PSHRS) honored Edward R. “Ned” Book ’54 HA with the Lifetime Achievement Award to recognize his lifelong contributions to the industry and to Penn State.

Father and son Harry Gilbert ʼ54 HA and Ron Gilbert ʼ80 FS HA comprise one of the many multi-generation families to receive a hospitality management degree from Penn State.

The celebration served as a reunion for many alumni, including (L-R): Aileen Konhauser ʼ42 H Ec, ʼ51g FS HA; Ted Balabanis ʼ55 HA; Harry Gilbert ʼ54 HA; Jack Heinze ʼ56 HA.

  Faculty members Dan Mount (with his wife Kate) and Pete Bordi ’76 FS HA, ʼ81g M E R.

  Ned Book ʼ54 HA being served by the Nittany Lion mascot.

Photo Credit: Chuck Fong (8)

The wonderful service and decor provided by Jim Purdum ’77 FS HA and his staff at the Nittany Lion Inn. Alumni and friends enjoy conversation during the reception (L-R): Sue Paterno ʼ62 LIB, Jack Diehl ʼ54 BUS, Mary Jane Heinze ʼ60 LIB.

  Co-master of ceremonies John Black ʼ62 LIB speaks during the dinner program.

Wade McCorkel ʼ10 Eng, Amanda Liddick ʼ11 HDFS, Melissa Book, Franco Harris ʼ72 FS HA, Eric Book ʼ12 HR&IM, Ned Book ʼ54 FS HA.

Special Section: School of Hospitality Management Ned Book is presented with the PSHRS Lifetime Achievement Award (L-R): John Heinze ʼ57 HA, co-master of ceremonies; Nan Crouter, Raymond E. and Erin Stuart Schultz Dean, College of Health and Human Development; Ned Book ʼ54 HA; Tom Riley ʼ91 LE ST, PSHRS president.   Joe McCann ʼ78 FS HA was one of several guest speakers to share reflections on the school’s 75th anniversary and Ned Book’s Lifetime Achievement Award.

(L-R): Phoebe Seiverling ʼ04 HRIM; Sara Parks ʼ97g EDU; Henry Parks; Maisie Seiverling ʼ71 LIB, ’82 LAW. Ned Book ‘54 HA is presented with proclamations from the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania (L-R): John O’Neill, director, School of Hospitality Management; Tom Riley ‘91 LE ST; Ned Book ʼ54 HA; John Heinze ʼ57 HA.

  (L-R): Jim Keiser, Ted Farrand ʼ71 FS HA, Tim Colligan ʼ86 HRIM.

Photo Credit: Chuck Fong (9)

Students participate in the celebration (L-R): Megan Taylor, Jenna Lucas, Nittany Lion mascot, Jasmine Franklin, Justine Laniewski ʼ12 HRIM, John Ventura, Brett Ehrhardt ’12 HRIM, Christina Jacoby, Eric Book ʼ12 HRIM.

  (L-R): Joan Beiter, Bill Lindsay ʼ53 HA, Christine Gallo, Jack Beiter ʼ52 EDU.

Jim Purdum ʼ77 FS HA and Barbara Purdum ’99, ʼ01g NURS. (L-R): John Heinze ʼ57 HA, Kathy Heinze, Rob Grimes ʼ80 FS HA, Mary Jane Heinze.

Special Section: School of Hospitality Management

Photo Courtesy: Ned Book

Photo Credit: Chuck Fong

Honoring A Lifetime of Achievement

Edward R. Book ’54

Ned’s career in the hospitality industry began in 1951 at Howard Johnson’s Restaurant, where he continued to work on weekends and summers while attending Penn State. The restaurant was run by two Penn State alumni—Dick Myers and Don Cavanaugh—and this would be the first of many alumni interactions throughout Ned’s career in the industry. After graduating from Penn State in 1954 with a degree in hotel administration and the ROTC program, Ned spent four months in the Army Basic Infantry Officer Training at Fort Benning, Georgia. He was then stationed in Germany from 1955 to 1956, followed by Fort Dix, N.J., where he trained recruits in the Army. After his time in the service, Ned returned to the hospitality industry with Howard Johnson’s Restaurants in Gettysburg, Pa. His career progressed in management at the Harrisburger Hotel, the Hotel Bethlehem, and Cleveland’s Hospitality Motor Inn.

In 1969, his career took off when he was hired as general manager of the Hotel Hershey. In 1974, he was elected president, chairman, and chief executive officer of Hershey Estates, later to be renamed Hershey Entertainment and Resorts (HERCO). Under Ned’s leadership, HERCO went through significant expansion and development, which gave the company a national reach. Described by his peers as an inspirational and visionary leader, Ned implemented a strategy to geographically diversify the company in the wake of the Three-Mile Island nuclear accident, the Polio outbreak, and the gas crisis that drastically affected the region. He also oversaw property enhancements in Hershey, as well as expansion through acquisition and development in the Poconos and in Connecticut and Texas. Ned was a great believer in education; as a result, he implemented progressive training for his managers and employees. He also created a salary administration program with equity; met with employees on a

Photo Courtesy: Ned Book

Photo Credit: Chuck Fong

Photo Credit: Chuck Fong

regular basis; and formed an employee association with social activities, an employee newsletter, and discount cards for employees to use company facilities.

Ned also is recognized for broadening TIA’s scope. He spearheaded the industry’s efforts to combat crime by introducing a three-point plan calling for gun control, and he joined forces with both government and the World Tourism Organization to draw attention to this worldwide problem. In a battle against what he saw as unfair taxes, he helped to develop, along with the American Society of Travel Agents (ASTA), the Campaign to Keep Travel

Ned’s contributions to the industry as a leader and to Penn State as a volunteer are far reaching and have carved a path for success and progress that we continue to enjoy today. Despite a very busy executive agenda, Ned made time to volunteer both in and out of the industry. During his career, he was a volunteer with TIA since 1974 and served as the national chair from 1981 to 1982. He also served as chairman of the Pennsylvania Travel Industry Advisory Council, and he was a trustee of the American Hotel and Motel Association. Ned continues to serve the State College community, and he serves in many capacities for organizations such as SCORE, the Foundation for Mount Nittany Medical Center, WBCA Pink Zone, the Penn State All-Sports Museum, the Palmer Museum of Art, and the Village Heights Condo Association.

Photo Courtesy: Ned Book

Ned left HERCO in 1987 to serve as president and chief executive officer of the Travel Industry Association of America (TIA), known today as the U.S. Travel Association (USTA). During that time, the TIA represented all components of the $397-billion travel industry with a mission to promote travel to and within the United States. Ned is credited with helping to unify the industry by developing more proactive, aggressive strategies and programs, including leading the industry’s efforts to increase international visitation. TIA’s highest category of membership jumped 400 percent during his tenure.

Competitive, which was housed at TIA. Ned was quick to voice the industry’s boycotts, and he assisted in forming the African American Travel and Tourism Association. He was also instrumental in bringing about the firstever White House Conference on Travel and Tourism. Ned retired from the TIA in 1994 after a tremendous career serving the hospitality industry for more than forty years.

Special Section: School of Hospitality Management Ned received the Alumni Fellow Award from Penn State in 1981 and the Penn State Hotel and Restaurant Society’s Hospitality Executive of the Year Award in 1984. He continues to serve as a Conti Professor in the School of Hospitality Management. In 1986, he received Penn State’s Distinguished Alumni Award, the highest honor bestowed upon Penn State alumni. He is a past president of the Penn State Alumni Association and the Penn State Hotel and Restaurant Society, and he has served on

the Penn State Board of Trustees. While serving on the Penn State Board of Trustees he was vice president of the board from 1982 to 1985. Ned and his wife Inga have been married for fifty-nine years and currently reside in State College. They first met at a Penn State freshmen orientation event and later married during Ned’s junior year. The couple has three children—Sandy, Ed, and Fred— and five grandchildren.

Photo Credit: Chuck Fong

Photo Courtesy: Ned Book (2)

Penn State Hotel & Restaurant Society PSHRS seeks to unite alumni of Hotel, Restaurant, and Institutional Management (and alumni of predecessor majors) in order to serve alumni, students, and faculty and staff members of the School of Hospitality Management. Below is an update from the PSHRS president about current activities and ways to get involved. PSHRS held its annual Alumni Awards reception on October 5, 2011, at the Nittany Lion Inn. Bruce Thomas ’80 FS HA, vice president, guest services, Geisinger Health Systems, received the Alumnus of the Year Award. Michael Pajak ’06 HRIM, manager, global feasibility and investment analysis, Hilton Worldwide, and Leigh Silkunas ’08 HRIM, area revenue manager, Kimpton Hotels, received Emerging Undergraduate Professional Awards. Peeranee Musigchai ’04 MHRIM and Suksan Ruangpattana ’04 MHRIM, co-owners, Cozy Thai Bistro, State College, received the Emerging Graduate Professionals Award. The reception was held in conjunction with the annual “Alumni in the Classroom” program, for which sixty-five alumni returned to engage students and speak in the classroom. In November, PSHRS honored Randy Smith, chairman and cofounder of STR, as the Hospitality Executive of the Year during a reception at the Kimmel Center at New York University.

PSHRS will be hosting the annual alumni summer weekend, featuring the School of Hospitality Management reception and the Benefield Bash on July 20-22 in Philadelphia, Pa. The PSHRS career opportunities/alumni job board is available to alumni and industry partners posting open positions and seeking employment (183 positions posted in 2011). View postings as well as other activities and event information at the PSHRS website.

Connect with the Affiliate Program Group Website www.pshrs.org APG President Tom Riley ’91 LE ST tom.riley@kimptongroup.com


Health and Human Development Magazine - Summer 2012 / SPECIAL SECTION: SHM