[Part 2] Why Did You Apply to be on the HFTP Global Board?

HFTP Global President Lisa Funk, CHAE gathers current and former HFTP Global Board of Directors to answer a simple question: Why did you apply for an HFTP Global Board of Directors position? This is a two-part series.

Read [Part 1] for more insights>

If you’d like to apply to be on the Global Board, the deadline is March 1, 2012.  Apply here>

Cheryl Brennan, CHAE

Is the time right? We’re all so busy that the thought of adding one more responsibility, such as applying for the HFTP Global Board of Directors, can be overwhelming.

However, maybe things have fallen into place for you, and you’re starting to wonder “why not now?”

Perhaps you have felt some of the things I was feeling the last two or three years:

•    A growing desire to be more of a part of the global HFTP organization;

•    Believing you have insight and experience that could benefit our members; and

•    Wanting to have input in some of the decisions that are made within our association.

We live in an exciting time — technology is taking us leaps and bounds through uncharted waters, and our international presence is broadening at an unprecedented pace. Is it time for you to become a part of it?

Maybe there are other things too – have you found yourself watching with interest the camaraderie among Board members? Do you enjoy expanding your network of peers so that you easily fit into numerous situations? Are you a “volunteer-at-heart” who gets satisfaction out of helping others? If so, take the next step.

Fill out your application, gather your letters of recommendation and submit. Don’t let the “what ifs” stop you. Just do it.

Cheryl Brennan, CHAE is controller at Bloomfield Hills Country Club and is a director on the HFTP Global Board.

Calvester Legister, CHAE, MBA

Intrinsically motivated, I have consistently sought channels through life that intellectually stimulates. Within all HFTP members there exists some thirst for knowledge and a determination for continuous growth — two mutually inclusive attributes provided by the organization.

Becoming a member was a necessary condition for knowledge but not sufficient for continuous growth. My certification, chapter leadership and now as a board of director all represent my quest for continuous growth (communal leadership, commitment and a will to contribute).

Being a “bench warmer” is not acceptable to the son of a Pentecostal minister; which is what being a member but not volunteering for the HFTP’s board would be like after fifteen years.

Our last strategic board meeting held in Las Vegas, Nev. 2011, served as a reminder that nothing less than continuous growth is acceptable. When an HFTP member grows through their service to HFTP, it represents collective growth — a symbiotic relationship. I would rather be affiliated with no other organization beside HFTP but continuous growth for free! Why wouldn’t you volunteer to serve on HFTP’s global board?

Calvester Legister, CHAE, MBA is director of finance for Yotel New York and a director on the HFTP Global Board.

Jules Sieburgh, CHTP

For years I avoided being a part of the board, and eventually someone changed my mind. It was the best thing that could have happened to me.

I would highly recommend the opportunity to work with HFTP staff and with other dedicated members. It is a unique experience and worth every second of your time.

Jules Sieburgh, CHTP is a technology consultant for Jules A Sieburgh, LLC. He is an HFTP Global past president and an inductee into the HFTP International Hospitality Technology Hall of Fame.

Bob Oprea, CHAE, CHTP

My first attempt in applying for the Global Board of Directors was unsuccessful. I was disappointed. But a couple of years later, I was approached to apply again. I did and felt that I was better prepared and buoyant from the confidence that other had in me. Second time was the charm.

During my tenure, I had one board meeting, in particular, that impressed me. It was our annual strategic planning meeting and our leadership had brought in a few hospitality association professionals from all over the world to assist us in brainstorming our future goals. Toward the end of the meeting, they were extremely complimentary of HFTP and our leadership methods.

It was incredible to hear such comments but even more incredible to see the manner in which the meeting was run in that we ALL had something to offer.

Serving on the Board has opened my eyes to a well-organized, professional method of governing. I am very proud to have stepped forward and participated as a director.

Bob Oprea, CHAE, CHTP, is controller at Le Pavillon Hotel and was a director on the HFTP Global Board from 2004-2007.


I joined HFTP in 1991. After gaining so much personally in education and networking at HFTP events and via the different resources HFTP provides, it was time to give back to the organization that gave me so much.

I wanted to be able to work with students who are our future HFTP members — get them to be a part of HFTP. I wanted to bring my experience and knowledge to the association to help in fulfilling its goals, as stated in the strategic plan.

Why would one not want to share their leadership skills with HFTP? Why would one not want to work with a fantastic team of board of directors and learn from each other?

I would recommend everyone to remove the fear in you and be bold and apply for positions at the Global level and help the organization grow within the US, internationally and through student chapters.

Give back to HFTP what you got from HFTP and more. Working together, charting the course of HFTP with other Board members, is a fantastic experience — how ideas come to the floor, how all comment on them and how the consensus of what is better for the membership gets implemented.

It is a lifetime rewarding experience. Any doubts in applying for a Board member position? Contact me.

RP Rama, CHA, CHTP, CHAE, is vice president and CTO/CIO of JHM Hotels. He is the HFTP Global vice president and was a director on the HFTP Global Board from 2006-2009.

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