Editorial Board   

Ms. Shackelford

Ellen L. Shackelford

President, Connections Access Consulting Services, LLC (CACS)

As a person who has sustained a disability through injury, Ellen Shackelford is well aware of the many challenges people with disabilities face daily. She also knows people with disabilities are often overlooked in social situations and activities. As founder/president of Connections Access Consulting Services, LLC, she is dedicated to a service which will enhance the awareness and unconscious injustice of the aging population and Citizens with disabilities, so all will be included in social situations. Ellen's goal is to serve as an advocate by providing education through training and disability awareness programs necessary to address the importance of inclusion in an aging society. Previous employment at Insight Enterprises Inc. Peninsula Center for Independent Living has enlightened Ellen on the many facets of life the community was totally unaware in regards to people with disabilities. In addition, attendance at leadership programs: Partners In Policy Making, sponsored by Virginia Board for People with Disabilities; The Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services of the U.S. Department of Education Rocky Mount Technical Assistance & Consulting Center and Dan Hopkins & Associates, Inc. Ellen is active in the disability community and holds several leadership roles. She is the Vice Chairperson for the Hampton Mayors Committee for People with Disabilities, Chairperson for Accessibility; Victims Advocate (trainee) M.A.D.D.; Peninsula Literacy Council Tutor Volunteer. She is also a Member of other committees, such as: National Council on Independent Living (NCIL); Age and Abilities Expo 2007 (Secretary). Ellen has recently received 1st runner up in the Ms. Wheelchair Virginia Pageant held in Fishersville, Virginia. She lives in Hampton, Virginia and has a daughter in college and three grandchildren by her late son Jason R. Freeman.

Ms. Shackelford can be contacted at 757-827-0783 or ln@cacsllc.info

Coming up in August 2020...

Food & Beverage: New Technological Innovations

In the past few years, hotel food and beverage departments have experienced significant growth. Managers are realizing just how much revenue potential this sector holds, both in terms of additional revenue and as a means to enhance the guest experience. As a result, substantial investments are being made in F&B operations as a way to satisfy hotel guests but also to keep pace with the competition. Though it has been a trend for many years, the Farm-to-Table movement shows no signs of abating. Hotel chains are abandoning corporate restaurants and are instead partnering with local chefs to create locally-influenced dining options. Local, farm-sourced ingredients paired with specialty beverages or local wine also satisfies the increasing demand from Millennial travelers who are eager to travel sustainably and contribute to a positive impact. A farm-to-table F&B program also helps to support the local economy, which builds community goodwill. Also popular are "Self-Serv" and "Grab & Go" options. These concepts stem from an awareness that a guest's time is limited and if a hotel can supply them with fast, fresh, food and beverage choices, then so much the better for them. Plus, by placing these specialty kiosks in areas that might be traditionally under-utilized (the lobby, for instance), they can become popular destination locations. Of course, there are new technological innovations as well. In-room, on-screen menus allow guests to order from any restaurant on the property, and some hotels are partnering with delivery companies that make it possible for guests to order food from any restaurant in the area. Also, many hotels are implementing in-room, voice-activated devices, so ordering food via an AI-powered assistant will soon become mainstream as well. The August issue of the Hotel Business Review will report on these developments and document what some leading hotels are doing to expand this area of their business.