HSMAI Hospitality Hero: Peter Ricci

As part of the 2020 Adrian Awards, HSMAI Hospitality Heroes is honoring hospitality professionals for their efforts to take a leadership position, champion a cause, or create a program that has directly benefited industry workers, medical personnel, first responders, or communities impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. Nominations are open.

HOSPITALITY HERO: Dr. Peter Ricci, CHA, CHSE, CRME, director of the Hospitality and Tourism Management Program at Florida Atlantic University (FAU) in Boca Raton, Florida, and an HSMAI member.

CONTRIBUTION: During the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic, as it became clear that there would be layoffs and furloughs throughout the industry, Ricci came up with the idea of offering a somewhat condensed version of FAU’s Certificate in Hospitality and Tourism Management at no charge for hospitality professionals who were affected. FAU’s entire Hospitality and Tourism Management faculty helped Ricci put together the five-part online course.

RESULTS: More than 77,000 people enrolled in the program and more than 45,000 completed it and were awarded the certificate.

NOMINATED BY: Gregory T. Bohan, Hospitality Management instructor at Florida Atlantic University — “Working side by side with Dr. Ricci, all of us on the faculty were completely awed by his dedication to launching the program as an effort to help out our ailing industry. He had many sleepless nights not only designing and administering the program but responding one by one to thousands of emails expressing appreciation. He truly deserves to be recognized for his outstanding effort during this time of need.”

The HSMAI Adrian Awards have been honoring excellence in travel marketing for 64 years. Entry information for the 2020 Adrian Awards will be available soon. For more information, visit www.adrianawards.com.