Tell us a little about yourself and background.
I have been in the hotel industry for 29 years, starting as a desk clerk at the Courtyard by Marriott in Rancho Cordova. I have had the opportunity over the years work for Marriott, Starwood and Hilton all in Northern California. Along with being a General Manager I am a mom to three amazing children and a wife of 26 years to my best friend Garrison Moranville.
How long have you been the General Manager at the Residence Inn by Marriott—Capitol Park?
I have been at this hotel for 8 years.
Do you serve on any boards or committees?
I am Vice Chair for the Sacramento Hotel Association, 2nd Vice Chair for Visit Sacramento, the Chairperson for the Sacramento Marriott Business Council and the Chairperson for the NorCal Golf 4 Charity Tournament.
How often do you travel to Washington D.C. or the California State Capitol to advocate on behalf of the hotel industry?
I go to DC annually for a Marriott Lobby Day and visit our State Capitol annually with CH&LA Lobby day. I do however meet with my local legislators throughout the year as issues arise.
What are the important issues that are brought up when meeting with legislators?
On a National level we are always focused on the Visa Waiver program and Brand USA. Locally, the issues vary from Human Trafficking, to how Proposition 47 has impacted the Visitor experience in California cities and even local ordinances like Taxi cab regulations. Most recently in Sacramento we are working hard with City Council on expanding and renovating our Convention Center.
Does Marriott hold any advocacy events or receptions?
The last three years our California Marriott Business Councils, representing 400 California hotels and over 32k California Jobs have hosted a reception on the steps of the State Capitol Building the day before the CH&LA Lobby Day. This has been a great event to meet, greet and build relationships with our legislators the day before we walk into their offices to discuss the issues at hand.
Your property, being across the street from the California State Capitol caters to legislators and political insiders. How is catering to them different than other hotel guests?
It’s not any different at all.
What advice do you have for those working in hospitality and wanting to get more involved in advocacy?
I would get to know your local legislators, visit their offices, invite them to tour your hotel and attend events that are important to them. Our legislators want to hear from us about the issues. Get involved in your local hotel association and use them as a resource as well. I would also say attend the CH&LA Lobby day, it is an incredible first step to learn about the political process and meet your local legislators or members of their staff.