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HLTA establishes Women in Lodging and Tourism chapter

By Staff | Sep 4, 2014


HONOLULU – Female executives in the hospitality industry now have a professional organization to help further them in their careers thanks to the Hawaii Lodging and Tourism Association (HLTA), which established the Women in Lodging and Tourism-Hawaii Chapter.

The initiative is in conjunction with the American Hotel and Lodging Association’s Women in Lodging Program.

The organization is Hawaii’s first industry-wide forum exclusively for female hospitality professionals and provides women with the opportunity to connect with top professionals nationwide.

This organization is committed to the professional development of women in the hospitality industry, promoting long-term careers in hospitality and enhancing professionalism and success for women.

It accomplishes its mission through educational programming, structured mentoring and networking opportunities.


“The response has been tremendous with more than 250 female hospitality professionals already signed up for membership in the new organization,” said Julie Arigo, WIL-Hawaii Chapter chairperson.

“Women in Lodging provides a tremendous benefit and value to current and future HLTA members, and is a great opportunity for Hawaii’s women in the hospitality industry to access additional resources for professional development, networking and career advancement. We are excited about bringing this to Hawaii,” said Karen Wataru-Nakaoka, HLTA director of member relations and operations.

A kickoff event of the WIL Hawaii Chapter took place on Aug. 21 in Waikiki.

Currently, 22 states have a Women in Lodging & Tourism chapter.

Membership is free for anyone employed by an HLTA member, regardless of their position within the company.

The WIL Hawaii Chapter will be aligned with the American Hotel and Lodging Association’s purpose and mission: to enable the personal and professional development of women with strategies and actions focused on removing barriers and providing solutions; to foster the development of women to obtain leadership competencies that contribute to the achievement of overall career growth; and to engage women in the political process as it relates to the lodging and tourism industry.

The Hawaii Lodging and Tourism Association is a statewide association representing hotels, condominiums, timeshares and other lodging entities.

HLTA is dedicated to supporting Hawaii’s lodging industry through education, political action and membership benefits, and raising awareness about its contributions to communities throughout the state.