Ken launched Hotel Connections in 1997 after recognizing the market needs for a specialized procurement capability serving airline crews. Ken was an early innovator of airline’s industry products and services and which introduced greater value and efficiency into the procurement process; such as schedule loading and room blocking automation, reverse billing and crew information systems. The company continues to re-invest in new technology and operations to ensure its leadership position in the industry. Ken’s vision is to expand the crew hotel procurement market into other industries and segments by leveraging its core procurement competencies, proprietary technology, and global account service network for crews worldwide.
Prior to joining Hotel Connections as COO, Mike worked at Credit Suisse in their investment management division. After one year at Hotel Connections Mike was promoted to President.
Mike received his law degree and MBA. Mike is on the board of directors of Make a Wish foundation for Southern Florida and is a member of the Florida Bar.
Joel began his career in public accounting with Coopers & Lybrand, serving as audit manager and later joined the private industry where he served as CFO and General Manager for firms in manufacturing, distribution, and logistics. His expertise spans from financial strategy and financial operations with transaction experience in LBOs, ESOP, corporate acquisition, and sale. In his role as CFO, Joel leads the finance and accounting functions for the firm and develops financial and operational strategies to achieve corporate objectives. He holds a BS in Accounting and is a Certified Public Accountant.
Chris is an experienced travel, technology & marketing executive with experience in multiple business sectors. He currently leads our technology and infrastructure organization and is focused on building and enhancing our suite of technology offerings. Chris’s previous experience and businesses include; Co-Founder & Board Member of LegalACE a leading online legal documentation service, CEO of 24 Hour Concierge, EVP of Mission E Commerce Leading provider of Web Design, marketing and program development services and Director of Ops for Lighthouse Imaging Group.
Jeff is responsible for strengthening alignment and collaboration between the business’ revenue-related functions, and generating growth through sales and marketing. He is passionate about the value Hotel Connections’ software and services portfolio can drive for customers, to improve their efficiency, profitability and productivity. Jeff joined Hotel Connections in 2019 after nine years at Sabre, where he held roles in strategic planning, mergers and acquisitions, and business development. Jeff’s background is in management consulting having spent time at McKinsey & Company and Ernst & Young.
Zalman is responsible for supporting the various departments in driving and executing our company strategy and goals. He is focused on bringing competitive advantages to our company. Zalman joined Hotel Connections in 2016 as Director of Analytics and Reporting and later led Global Strategy and Execution. Zalman has a strong background in Finance, Analytics and Business Management. Prior to Hotel Connections he spent 10 years at JP Morgan in various Finance and Business Management roles within Asset Management. Zalman received his undergraduate degree from Baruch College in Finance and Investments.
Manuel oversees the account management and sourcing teams. His focus is to constantly develop ways to maximize customer delivery by obtaining the best hotel solutions for our clients’ needs at the best pricing. He holds an MBA from the Instituto de Empresa in Madrid and comes to Hotel Connections from TravelClick, leader in Distribution Technology and Business Intelligence for Hotels worldwide, where he led the Key Account Management department. Before TravelClick Manuel spent time with Innwise/Idiso marketing and distribution provider in Madrid working with brands such as Melia, Tryp or AC hotels.
Rodrigo is a passionate Engineer with over a decade of experience in the operations, supply chain and project management.
He started his carrier at the British American Tobacco Co. as a Logistics Project Manager in Santiago de Chile. He served various management roles working as Regional Project Manager for IT Implementations, Quality Assurance Manager and Head of Production for the Southern Cone Factory. His areas of expertise are in project planning & implementation, process efficiency, lean manufacturing, supply chain planning and customer service. Rodrigo is responsible for all client implementations and for ensuring that our customer service team always surpasses the client’s expectations.
Peter is a seasoned procurement professional and client director with over 20 years’ experience in the global Travel & Hospitality business. Prior to joining us in April 2012, he led procurement for multi-site, branded hotel, restaurant and leisure businesses – including a multi-award winning UK Hotel Group of the Year. Peter is a credible operator with a strong record of achieving commercial and quality improvements in very client-focused environments, and is also a graduate of the Chartered Institute of Procurement & Supply.
Don joined Hotel Connections in 2010 after spending nine years working in both Flight Operations and Ground Services departments for Singapore Airlines.
Don handled airport operations in various overseas stations for Singapore Airlines, including Shanghai and Nanjing in China, Penang in Malaysia, Paris in France, and Newark in United States. During his overseas assignments, he was deeply involved with hotel and transportation contract negotiations. He was also responsible for drafting and implementing delay and crisis management plans for flight disruptions impacting ground transportation and hotel arrangements for both crew and affected passengers.
Wolfgang Escobedo joined Hotel Connections in early 2010 to lead the Latin American region. He previously held senior procurement roles for global firms such as Aeromexico, Revlon and GlaxoSmithKlein and has managed budgets well over $50 million. He has procured a wide range of products and services including catering, inflight entertainment and major vendor management. He is based in Mexico City and leads the region’s hotel and transportation procurement efforts.
Michelle Alava is our VP of Accounting and brings over 20 years of experience in the Airline Travel industry.
Michelle handled the Accounting department at the Pan American Hotel and was responsible for several critical financial functions in the accounting department. Michelle also has a wide experience in Reservations, handling Distress Passengers.
Michelle joined the Hotel Connections’ family in 2006 as the assistant comptroller and quickly made her way up through the Accounting Department into her current role. Michelle holds a Bachelor’s of Science in Accounting.