NENA Federation 2022 Conference Wrap-Up

Greetings from Connecticut!

NENA held their spring regional conference this year in person at James Madison University’s Hart School of Hospitality, Sport and Recreation Management School from March 18-20, 2022. The Conference was a great success! We were thrilled to have a robust schedule of research papers and poster presentations along with several symposiums and interactive workshops all focused around the conference theme of “Stronger Together”. In fact, attendance was much higher than anticipated and the planning committee made a commitment to hold this conference in person and to limit concurrent sessions to make this weekend as engaging as possible. We were also fortunate to have a cohort of grad students attend and present.

We opened the conference Friday evening with an education and fun food and wine paring matching up four wines from New Jersey and fours wines from Virginia. It was well received by all attendees and is sure to be a NENA staple for future conferences in one way or another. Thanks to Tassie Pippert, Donna Albano, Jeff Lolli and Visit South Jersey for their work on this event and the donation of the wines.

We are indeed fortunate to have generous support from sponsors, including: James Madison University’s Hart School; Knowledge Matters; Penn State University School of Hospitality Management; Isenberg School of Management at UMass Amherst; STR; Russell Partnership Technology and many of the regional institutions sponsored as “Friends of NENA”. In addition, several of the Club Management Chapters in the Region were generous in conference support as well as in efforts to connect our students to summer internships and permanent positions.

Congratulations are in order to Colleen Metcalf and Tracy Michaud for receiving the Best Paper Award for: How Social Media Photo Tags from Flickr Can Inform on Tourist Behavior: Destination Management in Maine and to Simone Bianco, Manisha Singal, Florian Zach Best Poster for: Beyond Demand-Based Marshallian Rents: An Investigation of Knowledge Spillover Among Hotel Firms.

We hosted our 4th Legacy Lecture with Dr. Ernest Boger, Professor and Chair Emeritus of University of Maryland, Eastern Shore, who served on ICHRIE Boards and devoted his career to hospitality education where many students, faculty and industry associations and partners benefitted along the way.

Our keynote speaker, GJ Hart is a JMU Alum and a generous benefactor. GJ made his mark in the restaurant industry with such great concepts as Torchy’s Tacos, California Pizza Kitchen and Texas Roadhouse. No tourism and hospitality educator conference would be complete without a solid connection to the industry that brings us all together.

Thanks to all the attendees and volunteers at NENA who really make everything happen. We are fortunate to have great people who have boundless energy and enthusiasm. Thank you to the NENA Board Members, the Conference Committee Members, our research judges and presenters who made this a great experience for all.

Please visit our website at for more information about the Annual Regional Conference and other NENA Information.

Thank you all!

P.S. We enjoyed a surprise visit from the office! 

(Luckily, we are geographically convenient!)

2022 NENACHRIE Conference Sponsors
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