Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. LeBlanc

Brad LeBlanc

Senior Vice President & Chief Development Officer, Best Western Hotels & Resorts

In 2019, Brad LeBlanc joined the executive team for Best Western® Hotels & Resorts as Senior Vice President & Chief Development Officer.

Mr. LeBlanc reports directly to David Kong, President and CEO of Best Western Hotels & Resorts, leading sales and development efforts for North American expansion of the Best Western core brands, Sure Stay Collection® by Best Western, Executive Residency by Best Western®, VIb®, GLo®, Aiden® by Best Western, Sadie® by Best Western, BW Premier Collection® by Best Western, and BW Signature Collection® by Best Western.

In recent years, Best Western Hotels & Resorts has transformed into a modern and innovative global hospitality powerhouse with 16 distinctive brands in key markets across the world. Now boasting more than 4,500 properties in nearly 100 countries and territories worldwide, the company offers hotel solutions to suit guest and developer needs in every chain scale segment, from economy to luxury.

As Senior Vice President and Chief Development Officer, Mr. LeBlanc drives the growth of Best Western in North America across the company's diverse portfolio of brands.

An industry veteran with 30 years' experience in hospitality, Mr. LeBlanc joined Best Western's executive team. Most recently, he served as Senior Vice President of Franchise & Partner Development with Serendipity Labs, in the new shared workspace "Coworking" office segment with a network of hospitality-focused workspaces meeting demand for an expanding mobile workforce.

Prior to that Mr. LeBlanc successfully built multiple lodging brands across North America in his position as Vice President of Development for Choice Hotels and U.S. Franchise Systems.

Please visit http://www.bestwestern.com/en_US.html for more information.

Mr. LeBlanc can be contacted at +1 813-335-2800 or brad.leblanc@bestwestern.com

Coming up in December 2019...

Hotel Law: A Labor Crisis and Cyber Security

According to a recent study, the hospitality industry accounted for 2.9 trillion dollars in sales and in the U.S. alone, was responsible for 1 in 9 jobs. In an industry of that scope and dimension, legal issues touch every aspect of a hotel's operation, and legal services are required in order to conform to all prevailing laws and regulations. Though not all hotels face the same issues, there are some industry-wide subjects that are of concern more broadly. One of those matters is the issue of immigration and how it affects the ability of hotels to recruit qualified employees. The hotel industry is currently facing a labor crisis; the U.S. Labor Department estimates that there are 600,000 unfilled jobs in the industry. Part of the problem contributing to this labor shortage is the lack of H2B visas for low-skilled workers, combined with the difficulty in obtaining J-1 visas for temporary workers. Because comprehensive immigration reform is not being addressed politically, hotel managers expect things are going to get worse before they get better. Corporate cyber security is another major legal issue the industry must address. Hotels are under enormous pressure in this area given the large volume of customer financial transactions they handle daily. Recently, a federal court ruled that the Federal Trade Commission had the power to regulate corporate cyber security, so it is incumbent on hotels to establish data security programs in order to prevent data breaches. The lack of such programs could cause hotels to face legal threats from government agencies, class action lawsuits, and damage to their brand image if a data breach should occur. These are just two of the critical issues that the December issue of Hotel Business Review will examine in the area of hotel law.