> 2020 ICHRIE Leadership Candidates

2020 ICHRIE Leadership Candidates

For the office of Vice President

Ralf Burbach

Background Statement
Dr Ralf Burbach has been the Head of the Hospitality Management Discipline and Assistant Head of the School of Hospitality Management and Tourism, Technological University Dublin (Ireland) for the past eight years. He has worked in a number of lecturing and senior management roles in different higher education institutions since 2001. Ralf has thirteen years professional hospitality industry experience and held managerial posts in Germany, the UK and Ireland. Ralf is a member of the Irish Hospitality Institute, board member of the Irish Hospitality Trust, Chartered Member of the CIPD, member of the national Hospitality Careers Oversight Group, Immediate Past President of EuroCHRIE, area consultant for Ireland and Director of Networking at ICHRIE. As President of EuroCHRIE, Ralf spearheaded a number of key developments in the federation, including organising the highly successful EuroCHRIE 2018 conference in Dublin and co-hosting the historical first joint conference in Hong Kong with APacCHRIE (752 attendees); launching of the small group meeting initiative and instigating the redevelopment of the federation website. His main research interests are in electronic HRM, International Talent Management and vocational training systems.
Platform Statement
Creating a Truly INTERNATIONAL CHRIE for all Members: My name is Dr Ralf Burbach (currently Director of Networking @ICHRIE). I am now seeking your support in becoming your next Vice President.
I am privileged to have been part of the ICHRIE family for some years now, including Area Consultant, Director of Education, VP, President, IPP of EuroCHRIE.  As DoN, I aim at providing fresh impetus to our networking and conferencing activities.  My track record of successful change initiatives at Federation level are evidence of my strong desire and ability to transform our organization to better serve you, our membership, and to ensure the long-term sustainability of ICHRIE beyond our 75th anniversary.
In addition to delivering on a far stronger value proposition, my overarching goal will be to establish ICHRIE as a truly international organization that gives an equal voice to all of its members and federations across the globe.
Those whom I have had the pleasure to meet, will know that I am a people person and I genuinely believe that only together, as a global hospitality and tourism educators organization, can we overcome the many challenges that ICHRIE faces and capitalize on the opportunities that present themselves to us.  

Lea Dopson

Background Statement
Dr. Lea Dopson is the Dean and James A. Collins Distinguished Chair of The Collins College of Hospitality Management at Cal Poly Pomona.  Lea’s passion for hospitality is evident through her research in hospitality education, co-authorship of two textbooks in hospitality accounting, and service as a Commissioner of the Accreditation Commission for Programs in Hospitality Administration. In addition to her academic career, she has held management and corporate positions with Sheraton and Harvey Hotels. She has an ardent interest in international education, as is demonstrated by her creation of degree programs with institutions in Costa Rica and Zimbabwe.
Lea previously served two-terms as ICHRIE Treasurer from 2004–2008 and ICHRIE Director of Conference from 2016-2018.  She was also the Founding President of US West Federation of ICHRIE. She is currently serving a third term as Treasurer from 2018-2020, and she has been a member of the Executive Committee of the Board of Directors, the Finance Committee, the Future Fund Committee, and the Financial Investment Committee, all of which allowed her to contribute to enhancing the financial viability of the organization. In addition, she has served on the Awards Committee, the Strategic Planning Committee, and the ESD Board of Governors.
Platform Statement
My experience on the ICHRIE Board of Directors has prepared me to lead the association toward my vision of an engaging association in which all members enjoy a more robust, global organization. Furthermore, my experience as Dean of The Collins College of Hospitality Management at Cal Poly Pomona has provided me the opportunity to lead a successful, well-funded, world-renowned college.
The Vice President of ICHRIE chairs the Strategic Planning Committee and serves as a liaison with the ESD Board of Governors, both of which I have served previously. If elected Vice President, I am committed to working closely with the ICHRIE Board of Directors and members to ensure that we move the organization forward in all areas of our Strategic Plan and the Comprehensive Organizational Review, completed last year. I am committed to elevating ICHRIE as we engage to improve our annual conference, increase number of members, ensure the financial health of the organization, and provide meaningful opportunities for member networking and research collaboration. With the diverse background of positions I have held in ICHRIE, I am eager to lead the association in its journey towards becoming a more inclusive organization in which members feel engaged, enriched, and valued.

For the office of Treasurer

Priyanko Guchait

Background Statement
Priyanko Guchait, PhD. is a tenured Associate Professor in the Conrad N. Hilton College of Hotel and Restaurant Management at University of Houston. He is an innovative researcher and hospitality educator. Dr Guchait is the author of more than 40 peer-reviewed journal articles. He has also authored numerous book chapters, conference proceedings and magazines. Dr. Guchait currently teaches Human Resource Management, Leadership, and Organizational Behavior at the undergraduate level, and Multivariate Data Analysis at the Ph.D. level. He taught at the University of Mississippi and The Pennsylvania State University before joining Hilton College in July 2012. Dr Guchait currently serves as the dissertation/thesis chair and in committees for Master’s and PhD students. He serves on the editorial boards of journals including IJCHM and reviews for several top hospitality journals. Dr. Guchait currently serves on the Eta Sigma Delta (ESD) Board of Governors. He was the faculty advisor for ESD-UH Chapter (International Hospitality Honor Society) from 2015-2019. Dr. Guchait is currently serving as Vice President for West Federation CHRIE. He was also the Director of Marketing for WFCHRIE from 2017-2019.


  • University of Houston’s 2012-13 New Faculty Research Award
  • Best Paper Award at the Southern Management Association conference in 2013
  • Provost’s Excellence Award in 2015
  • Stephen Rushmore/HVS Faculty Research Award in 2016
  • Best Paper Award at the ICHRIE conference in 2016
  • IJCHM Best Reviewer Award 2016, 2017
  • Best Paper Award at the WFCHRIE conference in 2018
  • Eta Sigma Delta Chapter Distinction Award in 2017

Platform Statement
ICHRIE has played a critical role in my success as a hospitality scholar. I was able to share my research through conference presentations. ICHRIE also gave me the opportunity to network with industry practitioners, scholars, and administrators. Most important, I was able to develop strong relationships with scholars across the globe and made great friends. For this, I am forever grateful to ICHRIE. If elected as Treasurer, I will work hard to provide this platform to future scholars. First, I will work closely with ICHRIE board members to create more value for our esteemed members of this organization. Second, I will collaborate with other federation leaders and members to enhance the performance and efficiency of the organization. Teamwork, inclusiveness, variety of unique perspectives from our federations will be key for the success of ICHRIE. Third, I will use my current industry contacts and develop new contacts to create new industry partners for ICHRIE. Overall, I will bring my professionalism, integrity, and passion for ICHRIE to the role of Treasurer.

Lisa Slevitch

Background Statement
Dr. Lisa Slevitch is currently an Associate Professor at the School of Hospitality and Tourism in the Spears School of Business at Oklahoma State University. Dr. Slevitch is an active member of professional and academic hospitality associations. She has been serving a Treasurer for the CentralCHRIE Federation in the last two years. She also served on the Board of the International Society of Travel and Tourism Educators in 2013-2017.
Dr. Slevitch’s research interests are in the areas of hospitality marketing and management, particularly in the field of determinants of customer satisfaction, consumer behavior, and sustainability. Her articles have been published in the International Journal of Hospitality Management, International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, Cornell Hospitality Quarterly, and other reputable hospitality and tourism journals.
Dr. Slevitch completed her PhD. in 2007 in Foodservice and Lodging Management with a specialization in hospitality marketing from Iowa State University. She has a Master’s degree in Foodservice and Lodging Management and an M.B.A. with an emphasis in marketing and finance from the same institution. She also has an undergraduate degree in marketing from the Saint Petersburg University of Finance and Commerce.
Platform Statement
I am honored to be nominated to run for the position of Treasurer and look forward to the opportunity to serve the ICHRIE members in that capacity. I believe my background, skills, and experience make me a good fit for the position. First, I have been a Treasurer of CentralCHRIE for almost two years and have successfully managed its financial matters. I am particularly proud of streamlining and organizing record-keeping in a way that allows easy transition to the next Treasurer. Secondly, my experience with ICHRIE would allow me to step into the role quickly. I have been an ICHRIE member since graduate school. I closely worked with several interest groups as well as the ICHRIE Board Members. Additionally, I supervised one of the recent Research Academies. These experiences give me a springboard from which my Treasurer duties would start. Finally, I have desire and energy to serve the ICHRIE members. ICHRIE has been an important part of my professional growth and I would like to pay it back. If elected, I would approach my duties with the following objectives:
- Implementing operational efficiencies
- Improving profitability
- Maintaining transparency and fairness.

I look forward to working with you on these objectives.

For the position of Director of Conference

Damien Duchamp

Background Statement
Dr. Damien L. Duchamp holds degrees from SUNY New Paltz (BA), Clemson University (M.Ed), and Gwynedd Mercy University (Ed.D). After spending thirteen years as a college administrator he worked in the private sector with beverage and restaurant brands. This led to consulting and teaching. Currently he is a full time faculty member and head of the Department of Hospitality and Tourism at St. Joseph's College in Brooklyn, New York. Dr. Duchamp conducted his doctoral research in Ghana, resulting in a dissertation entitled “Perceptions of the Hospitality and Tourism Industries by 18-24 Year Olds in Ghana, West Africa.” He is committed to developing a vibrant tourism ecosystem there, and is currently writing a book on the topic. Complementing his teaching, Damien is the Executive Director of Hospitalented. This organization is dedicated to infusing hospitality and tourism education into parts of the world where such education is hard to come by.
Dr. Duchamp has been an active member of CHRIE since 2016. Damien has served as the Director of Membership for NENA Federation since 2018. He also serves on the CHRIE Conference Committee, Networking Committee, Membership Committee and is part of the Beverage SIG.
Platform Statement
I am incredibly committed to improving CHRIE as a whole. For this reason I have made it a point to be active on different committees, as well as serve NENA as Director of Membership. I have been a planner for 20+ years, and teach conference planning every spring. I joined the conference committee at my first ICHRIE, focused on improving the schedule and increasing the value for members. I sit on CHRIE’s membership, networking, conference, and 2yr College committees in order to achieve a conference experience that members deserve.
Without members there’s no conference. Within NENA I have fought to improve our engagement with individuals at every level. This includes offering mini-scholarships to high school teachers and developing carpooling options for our spring conference. With the CHRIE networking committee I pushed to improve our new member activities. On the CHRIE membership committee I advocated for reducing the cost of 2yr faculty, adjunct and graduate student membership. I believe if we did this, we would increase membership and attendance at our conferences. I am eager to take all of these ideas to the next level and build off the improvements we have made on the conference committee under Alleah Crawford’s leadership.

Kimberly Severt

Background Statement
Dr. Kimberly Severt is an Associate Professor and the Director of the Hospitality Management program at The University of Alabama. She joined the University of Alabama faculty in 2012. Prior to joining the University of Alabama, she taught at the Rosen College of Hospitality Management at the University of Central Florida. She has taught courses in the meetings and event discipline since 2005. Dr. Severt has completed grant projects for the Incentive Research Foundation and MPI. Her areas of research include:  customer equity in the convention industry, consumer behavior for meeting attendees, attributes influencing meeting planner’s destination selection, and consumer food and beverage purchasing intentions. Dr. Severt graduated from Oklahoma State University in 2007.
Dr. Kimberly Severt attended her first ICHRIE event in 1999 as a graduate student. She has been involved over the years attending conferences, presenting posters, giving stand-up presentations, and supporting graduate student efforts. She held the position of Vice President for Southeast CHRIE and The University of Alabama hosted the Southeast ICHRIE Spring 2015 Conference.
Platform Statement
If elected to the position of Director of Conferences for ICHRIE, I would establish three primary goals to accomplish while in the position. First, I would listen to member’s input. Based on my years of teaching and researching in event management, people attend conferences for education/research and networking. A better understanding of what members want to get out of the conference is critical to set forth a plan of action and determine necessary changes. Second, I would like to reduce the cost of attending the conference. One initiative would be to increase the number of sponsorships to offset some of the overall cost. Third, I would continue the work of the current Director of Conferences to improve the programing to increase attendee engagement and involvement.
The highlight of my ICHRIE conferences is always seeing former colleagues and interacting with faculty from other institutions. The relationships built at ICHRIE conferences play a valuable role, not only in the production of scholarly activity, but also personally by building friendships with people who have a common interest.

For the position of Director of Member Services & Development

Gilpatrick Hornsby

Background Statement
Gilpatrick Hornsby is an Assistant Professor at James Madison University in the Hart School of Hospitality, Sport, and Recreation Management. He earned a B.S. in Hospitality Management from the University of North Texas and both his M.S. in Hospitality Administration and Ph.D. in Human Sciences from Oklahoma State University. During his time in CHRIE, he has served on the education committee and the research committee and has written multiple articles for the communique. This past summer he organized and led the Teaching Academy on behalf of the education committee. He also serves as the JMU chapter advisor for Eta Sigma Delta. Within the NENA federation, he is currently serving in his second term as the Director of Research and has served on several federation committees. His research interest are in early career preparation, hospitality management competencies, and entrepreneurship.
Platform Statement
My desire to serve in the role of Member Services and Development is simple: I want to see ICHRIE grow. As a young faculty member ICHRIE has provided a space to find mentors, meet with colleagues, and share my research with faculty who provide substantive feedback. I would like to be able to provide those experiences to others in the association. I also believe this position is uniquely situated to highlight the other great work that the board is doing. As a member of ICHRIE committees, I can see the excellent services ICHRIE can provide and that is the message I want to share with both potential and lapsed members. If elected as the Director of Member Services and Development, I will have three goals:

  1. Engage with graduate students and recent graduates to learn what their needs are from ICHRIE
  2. Listen to current membership to see how we can continually improve
  3. Talk with both members who have left and with faculty that never joined to determine why ICHRIE either stopped or did not meet their needs

If you agree this plan with help move ICHRIE forward, I hope you will vote for me in this role!

Miranda Kitterlin-Lynch

Background Statement
I am currently an Associate Professor in the Chaplin School of Hospitality and Tourism Management at Florida International University, the Associate Editor of the International Hospitality Review, a Coca-Cola Endowed professor, and the Immediate Past President for the SECSA Federation of ICHRIE. Prior to joining FIU, I taught at James Madison University, University of Nevada, Las Vegas (while earning my PhD), and the University of Louisiana, Lafayette. I have been a member of ICHRIE since 2009, during which time I have held the positions of SECSA President, SECSA Vice-President and SECSA Director of Research. My hospitality industry experience includes lodging, catering, and events, but is composed mostly of food and beverage experience in the full-service restaurant industry, in which I worked from 1996-2009.
Platform Statement
During my time as SECSA President, I had the great experience of sitting on the ICHRIE board. I very much enjoyed serving my region, and am now excited for the opportunity to serve the entire population of our members. I am interested in serving in this role so as to help promote and grow ICHRIE membership, especially in Central and South America; I would work diligently with the SECSA director of membership towards this goal. Membership retention and recapturing lost members are also priorities to me in this role. I am honored to have been nominated for the Director of Membership position, and thank you for your consideration!

For the office of Director of Research

Joseph Chen

Background Statement
Dr. Joseph Chen is Professor of Tourism, Hospitality, and Event Management at the School of Public Health, Indiana University (Bloomington).  He has been a member of CHRIE since 1995 and served in committees in both ICHRIE and EuroCHRIE. Before joining Indiana University in 2004, he was a faculty member at Virginia Tech and the International University of Applied Sciences, Germany. Since graduating from Pennsylvania State University in 1996, Dr. Chen has been involved in graduate student advising, scholarly publication, journal editing, and scientific grant projects. At an early stage of his career, he received a national fellowship as a Fulbright Senior Scholar and research awards from ICHRIE and the Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Research. Dr. Chen’s journal publications and citations have been recognized by top-tier journals that named him as one of the leading scholars in the field of tourism and hospitality. In the last decade, Dr. Chen has been awarded prestigious grants nationally and internationally. He is the first hospitality and tourism researcher ever receiving a grant, as PI, from the National Science Foundation in addition to the grants from the Norwegian Research Council as Co-Investigator, and the Ministry of Sciences and Technologies, Taiwan, as Co-Principle Investigator.
Platform Statement
In my over-20-year association with ICHRIE, I have attended and organized ICHRIE conferences as well as contributed to ICHRIE journals. Over these years, ICHRIE research trajectory has evolved and undergone tremendous proliferation in the depth and breadth of research themes pursued by the members. As a candidate for the ICHRIE research director position,  I would like to propose a robust platform propelling the growth of research outputs touching on theory development and problem-solving through two research avenues: interdisciplinary collaboration and industry partnership. The former shall entail proactively establishing collaborative activities with researchers from other disciplines (e.g., information technology) towards evoking groundbreaking thoughts and frameworks, which would shed some light on future hospitality and tourism research. The latter would revolve around building research partnerships with the hospitality and tourism business that would assist ICHRIE members in producing evidence-based reports in both pragmatic and timely fashion. Further, I would endeavor to augment the communicative channels among researchers/educators that would permit members with similar research interests to amply exchange their ideas and propositions on hospitality and tourism issues. Nevertheless, I pledge to proactively seeks for other opinions towards the improvement of services to ICHRIE members to effectively facilitate their research and publication needs.

Jenna Lee

Background Statement
I am very honored to have been nominated to serve in the position of Director of Research for the ICHRIE. I am currently an Assistant Professor at East Carolina University. I am a graduate of University of Central Florida where I obtained Ph.D. in Hospitality Management, and I have M.S. and B.S. in Hospitality Management from University of Nevada Las Vegas. I have been an active member of ICHRIE for several years. Since 2016, I have served on the Scientific Paper Review Committee of ICHIRE as a marketing track chair. I am interested in becoming more involved in the ICHRIE's continued success by serving on the ICHRIE board.
Prior to joining academia, I worked in the industries of lodging, food & beverage, and airline. I remember industry professionals would often share their thoughts on scholarly research being outdated and unrelated to what they actually do. I believe that we as scholars should continuously build and maintain relationships with industry professionals and share knowledge in hospitality and tourism with them.
Platform Statement
I am motivated to build a bridge between academia and industry. If elected, I plan to propose a journal for practitioners so that it becomes a new platform to help fill the gap. A new journal targeted at practitioners will provide scholars an opportunity to collaborate on projects and solve problems with evidence-based research, which can possibly lead to grant opportunities.

For the past 74 years, ICHRIE has been the most reputable association where members can exchange information related to teaching, research, and industry trends, build their network through meaningful relationships, and develop research streams in hospitality and tourism. It is a challenge to keep the tradition and retain the high reputation of ICHRIE while adjusting to new trends. I am committed to working with the other board members to continue to achieve the vision, mission and values of the ICHRIE if elected.
I have great interest in this role to help promote the research efforts for the ICHRIE and to serve its members. As a self-motivated, team-oriented, goal-driven individual, I believe I will be an asset to the ICHRIE Board of Directors in serving the position of Director of Research.
Thank you for your consideration.


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