OHLA 2018Conference Logo RGB 

2018 OHLA Annual Conference & Gala

OHLA Hoteliers to see the future

of the Lodging Industry

Nationwide Hotel & Conference Center, Lewis Center,OH 

This year, as we celebrate the association's longevity, OHLA will host a conference for all aspects of the industry.  Education features for the future, industry insight of the many past leaders and a look at the accomplishments.

Hoteliers and Exhibitors-Plan to spend Monday and Tuesday seeking out each other.

Our Gala will be held Monday evening, November 19, with the following day, Tuesday, November 20, offering education sessions and building relationships. Special Exhibiting events both Monday and Tuesday-More to Come!

OHLA will again offer cutting edge sessions to bring you and your team along with the momentous changes in technology, privacy and security and working with your team.

2017 conference hilton dt award

The Stars Awards Dinner and Gala will be a celebration of the ages!  The 125th Anniversary of the Ohio Hotel and Lodging Association will bring out the best of the best and feature those destined to be our future leaders.

Each year, the Ohio Hotel & Lodging Association, in partnership with local lodging councils around the state, presents the Stars of the Industry Awards in recognition of the outstanding and exemplary efforts of talented and dedicated hospitality professionals in the state. Nominations are accepted for individuals who go above and beyond in the performance of their duties and exceed an organization’s ordinary expectations.

Categories awarded at the 2018 Annual Conference and Gala will include Ohio Server of the Year, Ohio Housekeeper of the Year, Ohio Front Desk Associate of the Year, Ohio Supervisor/Manager of the Year, Ohio Service Superstar of the Year, Ohio General Manager of the Year, Unique Lodging of Ohio Property of the Year, and Hospitality Leadership Team of the Year.

 2017 Stars Winners

Hospitality Leadership Team of the Year was awarded to:

The Hilton Columbus Downtown

Ohio Server of the Year was awarded to:

Cathy Thomas of Columbus Airport Marriott

Ohio Housekeeper of the Year was awarded to:

Ryne Sanford of the Hilton Columbus Downtown

Ohio Front Desk Associate of the Year was awarded to:

Lee Dratch of Columbus Airport Marriott

Ohio Supervisor/Manager of the Year was awarded to:

Ty Sindledecker of the Hilton Columbus Downtown

Ohio Service Rockstar of the Year was awarded to:

Norsius Nortila of Millennium Hotel Cincinnati

Ohio General Manager of the Year awarded to:

Carrie Richards of the Hilton Columbus at Easton

Unique Lodging of Ohio Property of the Year was awarded to:

The Welsh Hills Inn

Unique Lodging of Ohio Property of the Year Runner-Up was awarded to:

1830 Hallauer House Bed & Breakfast

Congratulations to all of our winners! We look forward to what all of your teams will accomplish in 2018!


November 19th, 2018




12:00 PM - 7:00 PM


12:30 PM - 2:30 PM

Exhibitor Set-up

3:00 PM - 7:00 PM

Silent Auction

2:30 PM - 4:00 PM


How to Create a Financially Engaged Leadership Team

4:00 PM - 5:00 PM

New Member Reception - Invite Only

4:00 PM - 5:30 PM

ULO Reception & Forum - ULO Members Only

4:30 PM - 5:30 PM

Owner/Mgt Company Reception - Invite Only

5:30 PM - 6:00 PM

Exhibitor Experience Opens

6:00 PM - 7:00 PM

Cocktail Hour in Exhibitor Hall

7:00 PM

Silent Auction Closes

7:00 PM - 10:00 PM

Gala Dinner and Celebration


November 20th, 2018


6:00 AM - 7:00 AM

Morning Wellness – Mind, Body & Soul

7:00 AM - 10:00 AM


7:00 AM

Silent Auction Opens

7:30 AM

Exhibitor Experience Opens

7:30 AM - 8:15 AM


8:30 AM - 9:30 AM

Voice Activated Hospitality

8:30 AM - 9:30 AM

B&B’s Unbound: The State of B&B’s In the US - ULO Recommended Track

9:30 AM - 10:15 AM

Exhibitor Break / Food Break

10:15 AM - 11:45 AM

Hospitality Roundtable – “So What Are You Doing After Graduation”

10:30 AM - 11:30 AM

The Future of Hotels: The Lifestyle Brand

10:30 AM - 11:30 AM

Serving Guests with Challenges: A Service Animal Discussion

10:30 AM - 11:30 AM

Writing A Winning RFP - Sales Recommended Track

10:30 AM - 11:30 AM

Buy Into Who You Are: Dos and Do Nots of Creative Marketing
Communication for Unique Properties - ULO Recommended Track

10:30 AM - 11:30 AM

Legal Challenges and YOUR Liability - ULO Recommended Track

11:45 PM - 1:30 PM

Luncheon/Annual Meeting

1:30 PM - 2:00 PM

Exhibitor Break / Dessert Break

2:00 PM - 3:00 PM

Changing the Conversation from #MeToo to #NotHere

2:00 PM - 3:00 PM

“Thanks for Coming In Today” – Creating a Culture Where

Employees Thrive and Customer Service is Alive

2:00 PM - 3:00 PM

Persuasive Presentations - Sales Recommended Track

2:00 PM - 3:00 PM

Innkeeper = CEO: Working on Your Business, Not in Your Business 

- ULO Recommended Track

3:15 PM - 4:15 PM

The Emotionally Intelligent Leader

4:15 PM - 4:45 PM

Silent Auction Payout

 Hospitality Engagement Track

WIL and HFTP Wellness - How To Create a Financially Engaged Leadership Team

Communication is important – especially financial communication. Learn how to get your hotel team actively involved with financial budgeting and forecasting. When your department managers effectively track their results, adjust spending, and control labor profits increase.

Voice Activated Hospitality

The future of hotels is here, and it’s controlled by you. Learn about the latest technologies taking place in your hotel room by those who are developing the technology. See how the future of hospitality is going digital.

Hospitality Roundtable: “So, What Are You Doing After Graduation”

Roundtable discussion with industry professionals to find what best path best suits you after graduation.

The Future of Hotels: The Lifestyle Brand

Hear brand representatives sound off on the newest concept in the hotel market: lifestyle brands. What are they? Who are they for? Why are they being created?

Serving Guests with Challenges: A Service Animal Discussion

Did you know a pony can be a service animal? Learn about how hotels should properly serve guests with specific needs and the laws that each party should abide by.

Changing the Conversation From #MeToo to #NotHere

The #MeToo movement has resulted in renewed attention to anti-harassment programs within the workplace. In this session, Catherine Strauss will focus not only on the legal requirements and how to investigate a complaint, but on ways employers can change the conversion from "don't (harass)" to "do(respect)" and

build a better workplace by embracing the movement, rather than living in fear of #What'sNext. 

“Thanks for Coming In Today!” – Creating a Culture Where Employees Thrive and Customer Service Is Alive

By providing your guests with an unforgettable experience, your business can build customer loyalty and gain an edge over your competition. But what most managers forget is that great customer service starts with happy employees. To take your organization to the next level, you need to work from the inside out.

The Emotionally Intelligent Leader

Inspired leaders serve in a way that helps others be THEIR best - not the leader's version of what is best. All the planning and accountability measures will be for naught if the team, itself, is not healthy. Hospitality calls for transparency, open communication, great feedback and accountable leadership. This interactive keynote session uses principles of Emotional Intelligence to minimize drama and triggered behavior that block potential and then identify awareness and capability to build team engagement.


ULO Track

B&B’s Unbound

Garner an up-to-date view of the B&B Industry and a clear picture of today’s B&B traveler. Map the size, scope and opportunities for the B&B industry.

Legal Challenges and YOUR Liability

A discussion of legal hot topics in hospitality industry including liability and guest privacy as well as diagnosing HR Challenges for all sizes of properties. 

Working ON Your Business, Not IN Your Business

Working on how to focus on the big picture when running your business while also delegating and managing the day to day operation.

Buy Into Who You Are: Dos & Do Nots of Creative Marketing Communication for Unique Properties

Examining the dos and don’ts when concepting campaigns and messages, execution, and evaluation


Sales Track

Writing A Winning RFP

This session will help the sales person design a proposal that elicits a response. We will help them go outside of the cookie cutter proposal to create ones that are sales based and specific to the client. We will also show ways to implement these easily by customizing some key areas that count. The participants will generate better proposals that appeal to clients. They will learn best practices and how to maximize their time with these. This training is sure to help your sales people get more responses from proposals and ultimately more closed sales as an outcome.

Persuasive Presentations

This workshop will focus on creating persuasive presentations from an analysis of the audience, determining the best method of delivery, and maintaining positive interest from opening to close. Whether you present to one person or one hundred, creating and delivering persuasive presentations can help you achieve your goals. The key is developing an active message and flawless delivery. We will prepare you consistently achieve both. Your message needs to gain attention, establish a need, satisfy that need and get your audience to visualize the future. With the right planning and presentation construction, you can ensure that you are taking the right steps to generate the buy-in you need from any audience.

Register for Conference Today!



Silent Auction

Want to invest in the future of the hospitality industry? Participate in our 2018 Annual Conference and Gala Silent Auction. Not only is the auction a fun addition to our conference, but it is a way to support our Education and Training Fund. This member benefit helps us fulfill our mission to aid hotel employees in continuing their education and take their career to the next level.

The Silent Auction will conclude on November 20 at 3:15pm. Donation forms are due November 1!

Attention Hoteliers: We also gladly accept duplicate hotel donations to be traded for other offers. Offers for trade need to be to us by September 7Please include the Silent Auction donation form with your much-appreciated donation.

To get in involved in the OHLA Silent Auction a member, sponsor, or supporter must fill out the Silent Auction Donation Form and email it to Michele Marcinick at michele@ohla.org. If you have any questions regarding the auction feel free to reach out.  


ULO Property of the Year

Do you know of a Unique Lodging of Ohio Property that has done great things in the past year? We would love to recognize them for it! Nominate them for the ULO Property of the Year. The winner will be announced at our 2018 Gala on November 19, 2018!

ULO of the Year Fillable Form


Ohio, Nominate Your Stars Today!

If you are in a region not covered by the four city Stars Luncheons, you will get a special notice from OHLA to nominate your Stars. Now is the chance to make sure they are recognized for all the AMAZING work that they do for you and your company. This OHLA member benefit is a way to boost morale, reinforce the genuine hospitality taking place at your property, and make sure hard workers are getting the recognition they deserve. We need your help to make this year's Ohio Stars a success! Start making plans to nominate today! 

Nominate Here!

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Ohio Stars of the Industry Awards Sponsors


Buckeye Linen Trucklogo

Housekeeper of the Year



Service SuperStar of the Year


Travelhost Cleveland Logo

General Manager of the Year


ULO of the Year Award