Editorial Board   

Mr. Turner

W. Don Turner

Board Chair, California Lodging Industry Association

Don Turner is founder, president and CEO of Jorad & Company in Napa, a business consulting firm that specializes in operational and financial consulting for businesses. Mr. Turner also owns the Golden Bear Inn, a 43-room lodging property in Berkeley, California, and is the current Board Chair for CLIA--California Lodging Industry Association. Turner's background is quite interesting and his expertise in business, operations, personnel, accounting and financing, came with hard work and risk taking at a young age. At 22, with some college buddies, Turner opened The Caboose restaurant near Orlando, Florida. When he decided to marry his finance from California a year later, he abandoned the business and started The Great American Restaurants, built it to 23 restaurants, then sold it! He also developed, owned and operated The Big Yellow House restaurants and Annie Butterfield's Original Pot Pies. In 1999, he began purchasing lodging properties Jorad & Company offers accounting services and has long term successes in both start-up and turnaround endeavors. Don Turner has lived in California for the past thirty-three years and has founded and co-founded restaurant companies in both Northern and Southern California. He previously served on the board of directors of California Restaurant Association. Mr. Turner has more than 30 years of management experience in the lodging and restaurant industry and held management positions with Red Lobster Inns of America prior to developing his own companies. His personal interests are his family, golf, skiing, sailing, travel and, of course... food and wine.

Mr. Turner can be contacted at 916-925-2915 or joraddon@sbcglobal.net

Coming up in September 2019...

Hotel Group Meetings: Uncommon Destinations

The last few years have been good to the Hotel Group Meetings industry and that trend is expected to continue into 2019. Planners are brimming with confidence due to an expanding economy and increased job creation, which typically results in a boost in corporate meetings. Given this promising outlook, planners are trying to outdo themselves to satisfy the high expectations of their clients. One notable trend is to integrate unusual settings into the meeting experience, hosting groups at local zoos, aquariums, museums, event centers, or other outdoor facilities. The goal is to embrace uncommon destinations, rather than a typical hotel conference room, so that meetings can be memorable, unique and stimulating. This is also part of another trend which is to support all things local - from hosting events at landmark city venues; to catering through local restaurants, food trucks and microbreweries; to hosting off-site excursions like agri-tours, athletic events or scenic 5k routes. However, though the setting might be spectacular, there are still some bedrock components that must be provided to ensure a successful meeting. Free, high-speed Wi-Fi is still one of the most requested services. Planners have to make sure that a comprehensive communication infrastructure is in place so clients can easily connect - and stay connected - to the network throughout the entire meeting experience. Also, technology tools can be used to streamline the booking, registration, and check-in process, and Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) materials can be utilized to ensure seamless access to conference events. There are also numerous software tools that encourage audience participation, as well as integrating polls, Q&A, surveys and games into speakers' presentations. The September Hotel Business Review will examine issues relevant to group meetings and will report on what some hotels are doing to promote this sector of their operations.