“Ned Barker is a motivational, informative – and entertaining - speaker.”
Brian R. Carney, CHA
Vice President of Operations
Cooper Hotel Services
Professor Chekitan S. Dev
Professor Chekitan S. Dev teaches in the Marketing, Strategy, Information Systems and Tourism area of Cornell University’s School of Hotel Administration. An active consultant, seminar leader, keynote speaker and expert witness, Dr. Dev has served business, education and governmental organizations in over 30 countries on 5 continents. Clients served include Select Restaurants, YUM Brands, ExpoGourmand (Chile), InterContinental (Corporate Food & Beverage Division), The French Culinary Institute, Disney, Ritz-Carlton Bali, The Carlyle (A Rosewood Hotel), Peninsula (Hong Kong), One&Only Resorts (UK), Crystal Cruise Lines, The Breakers Palm Beach, Westin, Marriott, Holiday Inn, Hilton, Taj (India), eHow Technologies (China), NHV Hotels (Japan) and several others. A sought after commentator and frequent contributor to the discussion on business trends, Dr. Dev has been quoted in Nations Restaurant News, Hotels and Restaurants, The Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Los Angeles Times, TIME, Newsweek, USA Today, CNN.com, AOL.com, and has appeared on A&E, NBC Nightly News and National Public Radio.
Mr. O’Dowd is a highly respected authority in the restaurant industry. O'Dowd has been CEO of three public restaurant companies over the past 20 years. Most recently he served as president and CEO of Famous Dave’s of America in Minneapolis, where he successfully developed the organization from 18 units in the Midwest into an 84-unit national concept. As President of Rainforest Café, he lead their global expansion and was involved in master planning of theme parks, hotels and food courts.
Mr. Feldott is one of the nation’s leading leased-restaurant deal makers. He has developed, opened and managed 12 hotel projects and concepted and owned 6 restaurants (2 in hotels winning the Travel Holiday award 3 times). Mr. Feldott has probably placed more restaurants, from QSR to fine dining, in more hotels than any independent consultant working today. Recent placements include Ruth’s Chris, Morton’s, McCormick & Schmick, Bubba Gump, Shula’s and P. F. Chang’s.
Chef Michael Deihl, CEC CCA AAC
Chef Deihl is President of the Greater Atlanta Chapter of the American Culinary Federation, and has been teaching culinary arts as an adjunct professor for the last 12 years. He has been published in The National Culinary Review, Hilton Head Monthly, Current Diversions, Flavors Magazine, Georgia Restaurant Forum and has had numerous features written about him in newspapers and magazines. His numerous awards include ACF and local culinary awards in Hot Food, Cold Food and Ice Carving, ACF Chapter Chef of the Year in 1998 & 2006, Humanitarian of the Year in 2005, and the Georgia Restaurant Association’s 2007 Grace Award for Distinguished Community Service. His culinary home is the prestigious East Lake Golf Club in Atlanta, home of the PGA Tour Championship, where he is Executive Chef.