WestCoast Hospitality Corporation Announces Executive Positions

SPOKANE, Wash, Feb. 6 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ — WestCoast Hospitality Corporation (NYSE: WEH) today announced three new executive positions. We are putting in place an executive team that is very deep, with a history of success in the hospitality industry, and who will lead our hotel division's growth into many new markets in the upcoming quarters and years, said Don Barbieri, Chairman, President and CEO of WestCoast Hospitality Corporation. Our acquisition of Red Lion Hotels was so much more than bricks and mortar, and the combination of talent coming from WestCoast and Red Lion gives me great confidence as we continue to steer through a difficult economic period in the U.S., with an eye on a bright future.
Art Coffey has been named President of WestCoast Hotels. Mr. Coffey most recently held the position of Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer for WestCoast Hospitality Corporation. In his new position he will oversee the operations of the Company's hotel division, which recently doubled in size with the acquisition of Red Lion Hotels, Inc. Mr. Coffey has 30 years of experience in the hospitality industry, including 20 years in a variety of management positions with WestCoast Hospitality Corporation. He possesses a unique combination of expertise in development, operations, and financial disciplines which have been utilized to continue to grow the Company with a keen sense of customer satisfaction, balanced with investor return priorities. Prior to being one of the key management to take WestCoast Hospitality Corporation public in 1998, Coffey was Vice President and Chief Operating Officer for nine years. During his tenure, the Company has grown from ownership of three hotels to a multi divisional company with 93 hotels in its hotel and restaurant division, plus a leader in entertainment, and real estate services. Mr. Coffey will continue to hold the title of Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of the parent WestCoast Hospitality Corporation.
Sharon Sanchez joins the Company as Executive Vice President of the Hotel Division. Ms. Sanchez comes to the Company from Red Lion Hotels and Inns where she helped guide the Red Lion Hotel chain through its successful growth as Vice President of Operations and Brand Management. With over 25 years of hospitality experience, she has held hotel operations and sales management positions in convention, leisure and corporate based hotels, corporate positions in operations and brand management, and marketing leadership in the residential property management sector. Ms. Sanchez held instrumental roles during the Doubletree acquisition of Red Lion in 1996 and the Promus acquisition of Doubletree in 1997. Her extensive merger and operations experience made her ideal to join in the development of a business plan for the re-birth of the Red Lion brand that was accepted and began in 1999. She led the integration of 9 Doubletree hotels and 19 existing Red Lion hotels to form a brand of 28 owned, managed and franchised properties ultimately forming the re-birthed Red Lion. Thereafter, she was responsible for the operations and brand management efforts, assisting in the brand growth to 46 properties in less than two years. With the acquisition of Red Lion by WestCoast Hospitality Corporation, Ms. Sanchez chairs the transition team made up of leaders from both companies in addition to her leadership of the operations and sales organizations for the WestCoast Family of Hotels.
Charlie Cahill joins the Company as Senior Vice President of Marketing for WestCoast Hotels. Mr. Cahill has served as Vice President of Sales and Brand Marketing for Red Lion Hotels, Inc. since January 2001. Mr. Cahill has over 20 years of experience in the hotel industry, serving as Director of Marketing, Marriott Corporation, from 1985 to 1996. He served as the Regional Director of Sales and Marketing for the Doubletree brand from 1997 to 1999 while serving as Director of Sales and Marketing of Red Lion Hotels from 1997 to January 2001. Mr. Cahill's leadership in sales and marketing has increased brand awareness of the Red Lion brand of hotels while the chain underwent an aggressive expansion effort.
WestCoast Hospitality Corporation completed the acquisition of Red Lion Hotels, Inc. in December 2001 and now owns, manages and franchises more than 90 hotels in 16 states. WestCoast Hotels and Red Lion Hotels and Inns focus on serving business, convention and leisure travelers in first, second and third tire markets. WestCoast provides entertainment services through TicketsWest, including event ticketing for venues in the United States and Canada, and aggregates content for travel and entertainment that is sold in real-time at its www.ticketswest.com website. TicketsWest also includes WestCoast Entertainment, a Broadway and special event presenting company. G&B Real Estate Services is the real estate division of WestCoast Hospitality Corporation and owns and manages commercial and residential properties. Registered trademarks of WestCoast Hospitality Corporation protect the use of WestCoast and Red Lion Hotels and Inns and TicketsWest.