PEOPLE update Jan. 28, 2020

Amy Ballard, director of sales and marketing JW Marriott Parq Vancouver & the DOUGLAS, an Autograph Collection Hotel, is saying good-bye to colleagues and friends at the JW Marriott Parq Vancouver & the DOUGLAS. She was the hotel complex’s first associate nearly five years ago. Her new position will be as pre-opening director of sales & marketing for the launch of a new hotel, The Ritz-Carlton, Paradise Valley, Arizona. Ballard’s earlier positions include director of sales and marketing at the Opus Hotel, senior sales manager at The Beverly Hilton in Beverly Hills, Calif., and earlier sales and operations positions with Ritz-Carlton and Hilton in New York City. She was also GM of an Extended Stay America hotel in Ft. Worth, Tex.

Heather Balsley and Jennifer Gribble.

InterContinental Hotels Group has announced the appointment of two senior marketing executives. Heather Balsley has been named senior vice-president, Global Loyalty & Partnerships and Jennifer Gribble has been named senior vice-president, Global Marketing, Mainstream Brands. Previously, Balsley served as senior vice-president, Global Marketing, Mainstream Brands, while Gribble served as vice-president Holiday Inn Express, avid hotels and Atwood Suites. Both Balsley and Gribble are based at IHG’s Americas headquarters in Atlanta. 

As a nearly 13-year veteran of IHG, Balsley now leads the Loyalty & Partnerships. Previously, Balsley served as senior vice-president, Global Marketing, Mainstream Brands where she was responsible for developing and delivering brand strategies that enhance the guest experience and drive sustainable brand performance. Since joining IHG in 2007, she has held leadership roles across the Americas region including strategy and brands and marketing.

In her over 16-year tenure at IHG, Gribble previously served as vice-president, Holiday Inn Express, avid hotels and Atwell Suites, where she led significant improvements to the Holiday Inn Express brand and worked alongside Heather Balsley to launch avid hotels and Atwell Suites. She also served in Crowne Plaza brand management and portfolio-wide marketing services roles in the Americas region.

Kent Murray has been appointed dual general manager of the Lakeland Inn and and El Lobo in Cold Lake, Alta. For two and a half years prior to that, he was opening general manager for Hampton Inn by Hilton St. Paul, Alta. He also worked at the Staybridge Suites Calgary Airport, increasing guest love and quality evaluation scores and winning housekeeping awards during his tenure. Other positions included nine and a half years as general manager of the Holiday Inn Downtown Edmonton, and work with Silver Star Club Resort, Delta Sun Peaks, Holiday Inn Metrotown and Jasper Tramway. 

Hanna Jo Clemens has been appointed head chef at Killarney Mountain Lodge. Clemens, who has been a long-standing member of the lodge’s culinary staff, has been working in the restaurant industry for roughly ten years.  A pastry chef by specialty, Clemens has gained valuable work experience as a line cook and sous chef in the field.  After graduating from George Brown College where she studied both pastry and culinary, Clemens joined the Killarney group of properties at The Sportman’s Inn Resort and Marina in the summer of 2012. Thanks to an outstanding performance, she was soon recruited to work at the lodge. 

The IHG Owners Association, which represents InterContinental Hotels Group franchise hotel owners worldwide, announced that Wayne West III has assumed chairmanship of its Global Board of Directors for 2020. West is president and partner of Newport Hospitality Group, based in Williamsburg, Va. He succeeds 2019 chair Kurt Furlong, chief revenue officer and partner with Genuine Hospitality, LLC. Canadians on the IHG Owners Association Board include Americas board members at large, Felix Seiler, COO, Holloway Lodging Corporation and Nellie Dhanji, vice-president operations and legal counsel, Stanley Park Investments Ltd.