VisitPITTSBURGH Names New Officers, Elects Six Board Members

Timothy Q. Hudak, Esq., Assumes Chairman Position

PITTSBURGH – VisitPITTSBURGH announced its 2020 officers, as well as the election of six new board members, today at its annual business meeting.

The annual business meeting is typically held in conjunction with the organization’s annual meeting, which had to be cancelled earlier this year.

“We are happy to welcome this group of talented, knowledgeable professionals to our VisitPITTSBURGH board of directors,” VisitPITTSBURGH President & CEO Jerad Bachar said. “The travel and tourism industry has been faced with unparalleled challenges this year. We feel confident these individuals will help enhance VisitPITTSBURGH’s process as we attract business events and sports events, as well as leisure tourists to our great city.”

“Our board of directors will be in excellent hands with Tim Hudak as chairperson,” outgoing VisitPITTSBURGH Chairman Bryan Iams added. “He is well-respected in both the legal community and the hospitality community. Prior to joining Eckert Seamans and ascending to the role of CEO, Tim was General Counsel with Interstate Hotels Corporation, the largest independent hotel management company in the world. When it comes to hospitality and tourism, he truly gets it. This will be Tim’s second stint on our board, so he is knowledgeable about the workings of VisitPITTSBURGH and the important role it plays in our region’s economic development.”

The 2020 VisitPITTSBURGH officers are:

  • Timothy Q. Hudak, Esq., Chairman (Chief Executive Officer, Eckert Seamans)
  • Thomas E. Martini, Vice Chairman (General Manager, The Westin Pittsburgh)
  • Tommy Johnson, Treasurer (Vice President – External Relations & Corporate Responsibility, CNX)
  • Michele Meloy Burchfield, Secretary (Co-Founder and CEO, Blume Honey Water)
  • Bryan N. Iams, Immediate Past Chairman (Vice President, Corporate Communications, Marketing, and Government and Community Affairs, PPG Industries)

Timothy Q. Hudak, Esq., is the Chief Executive Officer for Eckert Seamans and has more than 24 years of experience in the hospitality industry. He has negotiated more than 2,000 hotel management and franchise agreements and numerous real estate joint ventures for the acquisition and development of hotels, and hotel secured credit facilities, for more than $5 billion, in addition to hotel real estate acquisitions and divestitures totaling in excess of $10 billion. Prior to joining the firm, Hudak was Senior Vice President and General Counsel for Interstate Hotels, where he played a lead role and acted as primary negotiator of the merger for the nation’s two largest independent hotel management companies. Hudak holds a J.D. from the University of Pittsburgh School of Law, a B.A. from Saint Vincent College and is on the Board of Directors of St. Vincent College.

The new VisitPITTSBURGH board members are:

  • Gino Caliendo, General Manager, Omni William Penn Hotel
  • Scott Frenz, Senior Vice President, Sales and Marketing, Fenner Dunlop Americas
  • Dan Griffin, President, Griffin-Spence
  • Kevin Kilkeary, President & Chief Executive Officer, Prospera Hospitality
  • Meredith Meyer-Grelli, Co-Founder/Co-Owner, Wigle Whiskey and Threadbare Cider & Mead
  • Troy Schooley, CEO, P3R

Gino Caliendo is the Omni William Penn Hotel General Manager. Appointed in June 2019, he oversees the hotel’s operations and leads more than 400 dedicated associates. Caliendo has more than 20 years of experience building and leading successful hospitality businesses. Prior to joining the Omni William Penn Hotel, he spent two decades with Hyatt, serving as general manager at hotels and resorts across the country, including Hyatt Regency Miami, Hyatt Regency Hill Country, Hyatt Regency Jacksonville and, most recently, Hyatt Regency at Los Angeles International Airport. Caliendo’s broad-based experience includes boutique hotels, resorts, convention destinations and suburban locations. Active in various industry and community organizations, he was twice nominated for GM of the Year for Hyatt.

Scott Frenz is Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing for Fenner Dunlop Americas, a Michelin group company headquartered in Pittsburgh. Frenz has made a career in B2B sales and marketing and has experience in developing innovative and value-added strategies for companies in manufacturing, distribution, healthcare and energy. In his current role, Frenz manages a team in Pittsburgh as well as remote employees throughout the United States. He previously worked with LB Foster, Strategic Energy (currently Direct Energy) and Philips/Respironics. Frenz earned an MBA from the Katz Graduate School of Business at the University of Pittsburgh and hold a B.S. in marketing from Penn State University.

Dan Griffin is President of Griffin-Spence, a multi-faceted company specializing in Energy and Development projects. He has worked in the health and fitness field since 1979, most recently serving as the General Manager of the Oxford Athletic Club until its sale in 2017. Griffin also was the founder and president of the Downtown Athletic Club of Pittsburgh (1995-2009). A 14-year employee at Club One, he was elevated from fitness instructor to fitness director and finally to vice president and general manager (with ownership). While at Club One, Griffin was certified by the American College of Sports Medicine and by the Club Management Institute of IHRSA. Recognized by Junior Achievement of Western Pennsylvania as “business of the year” in 1999, Griffin also was previously recognized by City of Pittsburgh Mayor Tom Murphy for significant equipment donations to the Hill District YMCA and was a member of Leadership Pittsburgh class XIII. He co-founded and was president of the Allegheny County Chamber Federation (Western PA Growth Alliance), a coalition of 25 regional chambers of commerce, and is an appointed Finance Council member for St. Joseph’s O’Hara Township. Griffin has been a member of the Allegheny Regional Asset District board since 1998, where he has served as vice-chair several times and chair twice.

Kevin Kilkeary is the President & Chief Executive Officer of Prospera Hospitality. Prior to forming Prospera Hospitality, Kilkeary enjoyed a 30-year career with Interstate Hotels Corporation, most recently serving as president & chief operating officer. Prior to that appointment, he served as president & chief operating officer – Crossroads Hospitality for Interstate Hotels Mid-Market Division, as well as corporate vice president sales & marketing for Interstate Hotels North America. Kilkeary’s experience also includes serving as regional vice president operations – Interstate Hotels Northeast Region, as well as hotel general manager, resident manager and director of sales & marketing.

Meredith Meyer-Grelli is Co-Founder/Co-Owner of Wigle Whiskey and Threadbare Cider & Mead. The distillery has been the most-awarded craft whiskey distillery in the United States by the American Craft Spirits Association for four consecutive years. Prior to starting Wigle Whiskey and Threadbare Cider & Mead, Meyer-Grelli worked in brand management at the H.J. Heinz Company. She is a two-time James Beard Award Semi-Finalist and was recognized as a 2018 Imbibe 75 Beverage Professionals to Watch. The author of The Whiskey Rebellion & The Rebirth of Rye, Meyer-Grelli also is the founder of the Whiskey Rebellion Trail. She received her MBA from Carnegie Mellon University, earned her B.S. in geography at the University of Chicago and studied cooking at Le Cordon Bleu Paris. Meyer-Grelli teaches entrepreneurship at Carnegie Mellon University’s Tepper School of Business

Troy Schooley is the CEO of P3R, the engine behind Pittsburgh’s greatest races. Schooley joined P3R in 2013 and throughout his time with the brand, he has more than doubled the partnership portfolio, leading and expanding the P3R brand. He is committed to bringing the best experience to all P3R’s participants, motivating any and all to move. Prior to joining P3R, he spent 10 years as a national account manager at ESPN Radio, Westwood One and Clear Channel. Schooley has established a strong leadership role in the endurance sports industry, often speaking throughout the country to share his expertise with industry professionals, specifically the importance of partnership and enhancing events and participants’ experiences. He graduated from Robert Morris University with a degree in sports management and currently sits on the Board of Directors for Running USA.

As the official tourism promotion agency for Pittsburgh and Allegheny County, VisitPITTSBURGH is dedicated to generating conventions, trade show and leisure travel business for the Pittsburgh region.