Editorial Board   

Mr. Wildes

Michael Wildes

Partner , Wildes & Weinberg

Michael Wildes, born and raised in Queens, New York, is the Mayor of Englewood, New Jersey, an immigration lawyer and a former federal prosecutor. As partner of NYC-based preeminent immigration law firm Wildes & Weinberg, established by his father, Leon Wildes, in 1960, Wildes has become internationally renowned for having represented the United States Government in immigration proceedings, for the successful representation of several defectors who have provided hard-to-obtain national security information to the United States and, most recently, for obtaining an injunction to prevent Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi from residing in New Jersey during the 2009 UN Summit. Elected Mayor of Englewood in November of 2003 and to a second term in November 2006, Wildes is recognized by the Democratic Party as a leading fundraiser for congressional and senate candidates throughout the United States, including Senators Hillary Clinton, Edward Kennedy, Joseph Lieberman and many others. He was voted one of the “100 National Up and Coming Leaders to Watch” by the Democratic Leadership Council (DLC), and the late Senator Kennedy said he had "high expectations" that Wildes would soon be joining him in the United States Congress. Wildes is frequently a legal commentator/analyst for network television, called upon to offer insight and expertise on crucial matters affecting the global community, from terrorism to the Patriot Act. He and his wife, Amy, live in Englewood and are the proud parents of four children. Affiliations: Of Counsel to the International Law Firm of Pavia and Harcourt; The National Police Defense Foundation; and the New Jersey State Law Enforcement Asian-American Advisory Committee. Guest lecturer/panelist at many distinguished forums and institutions including, Yale University, New York University, The Benjamin N. Cardozo, and Brooklyn Schools of Law. Member of the acclaimed Committee on Present Danger (where he serves with former CIA Director, James Woolsey and Senator Joseph Lieberman); Chair of the American Jewish Congress' Committee on International Terrorism; a member of the Advisory Board for the Urban League of Bergen County; and member of the Board of Directors of Boys Town of Jerusalem. Wildes is a certified EMT, a Member of the Hatzoloh Volunteer Ambulance Corps in New York; the Englewood Volunteer Ambulance Corp (EVAC) and has served over 10 years with the NYPD as an Auxiliary Police Officer. Sample High Profile Cases • Saudi Arabian diplomat (Mohammed Al-Khilewi) who defected after walking off with incriminating evidence of international terrorism and espionage. • Secured the cooperation of accused terrorist (Hani Al-Sayegh) implicated in the Khobar Towers bombing in Saudi Arabia - an atrocity in which 19 U.S. servicemen lost their lives. • Shoebomber Hero (Kwame James) who subdued Richard Reid, saving 197 passengers and crew members on American Airlines Flight 63.

Mr. Wildes can be contacted at 212-753-3468 or mwildes@wildesweinberg.com

Coming up in April 2019...

Guest Service: A Culture of YES

In a recent global consumers report, 97% of the participants said that customer service is a major factor in their loyalty to a brand, and 76% said they view customer service as the true test of how much a company values them. And since there is no industry more reliant on customer satisfaction than the hotel industry, managers must be unrelenting in their determination to hire, train and empower the very best people, and to create a culture of exceptional customer service within their organization. Of course, this begins with hiring the right people. There are people who are naturally service-oriented; people who are warm, empathetic, enthusiastic, pleasant, thoughtful and optimistic; people who take pride in their ability to solve problems for the hotel guests they are serving. Then, those same employees must be empowered to solve problems using their own judgment, without having to track down a manager to do it. This is how seamless problem solving and conflict resolution are achieved in guest service. This willingness to empower employees is part of creating a Culture of Yes within an organization.  The goal is to create an environment in which everyone is striving to say “Yes”, rather than figuring out ways to say, “No”. It is essential that this attitude be instilled in all frontline, customer-facing, employees. Finally, in order to ensure that the hotel can generate a consistent level of performance across a wide variety of situations, management must also put in place well-defined systems and standards, and then educate their employees about them. Every employee must be aware of and responsible for every standard that applies in their department. The April issue of the Hotel Business Review will document what some leading hotels are doing to cultivate and manage guest satisfaction in their operations.