This week a notable member of the hospitality technology community, Barry Shuler, has passed away. He held a long career as a lead technology strategist for Marriott International, Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company and International Hotels Group. In 2014, he was inducted into the HFTP International Hospitality Technology Hall of Fame for his role in developing a model for hotel industry enterprise architecture and IT strategic planning.
Hall of Fame inductee, Douglas Rice wrote the following in memory of Barry Shuler:
The hospitality industry lost a true giant and friend this week. Barry Shuler passed away at his home on November 27, following a long illness. Barry served from 1996 to 2008 as senior vice president and chief technology officer at Marriott, and is widely credited with driving the first brand-wide rollout by a major hotel brand of high-speed internet service, and for driving continual improvements in the quality of service that are today often taken for granted. Barry was also the first major brand C-level executive to pledge support to the then-fledgling industry association HTNG, joining their board of directors in 2004 and serving as its president from 2007 to 2009.
For his career accomplishments, Barry was recognized by his IT and hospitality peers with numerous awards and honors, including the HFTP International Hospitality Hall of Fame, Hospitality Upgrade magazine’s Industry Hot Shot, Computerworld magazine’s IT Premier 100, the Hotel Technology Forum IT Visionary, Infoworld’s Top 25 Chief Technology Officers, and CIO Insight magazine’s Business and Technology Alignment Honoree. In retirement, Barry authored “Virtual Travel: Embrace or Expire,” which Bill Marriott described as “a provocative look at how technology can change how we look at travel” and “must reading for our industry and for travelers in general.”
Barry was a good friend to many of us in the industry, a visionary with strong opinions, a willingness to support small and innovative companies, and a direct but never confrontational style. He was a lover of all new technologies, music and fast cars. In his later days he was never happier than when he was able to spend time with his loving wife Sue in their retirement home in Charleston, South Carolina.
Barry fought a long and hard battle with a particularly challenging form of cancer starting in 2004, never giving up, and sharing information widely with his friends and asking for their support and prayers with each bout. He successfully beat the cancer three times, most recently in 2014. However, complications from his many rounds of surgery ultimately took their toll. His wife Sue’s incredible devotion to caring for Barry throughout his ordeals was a true inspiration to his many friends.
Burial Service Details
Services will be held on Saturday, December 1 at 1:00 p.m. at the J. Henry Stuhr Funeral Chapel at 232 Calhoun St.; Charleston, SC 29401. In lieu of flowers, any donations can be made to the Southern Poverty Law Center, 400 Washington Ave., Montgomery AL 36104.
Douglas Rice is managing director of Hospitality Technology Network, LLC. He is the founder and CEO Emeritus of Hospitality Technology Next Generation (HTNG). Rice was inducted in 2012 to the HFTP International Hospitality Technology Hall of Fame.