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News Briefs

Red Roof Celebrates Women-owned Hotels at Leadership for Women Entrepreneurs Forum

The hospitality sector has been traditionally dominated by men. Red Roof has been an industry leader in promoting and nurturing women entrepreneurs. This year, at its fourth annual Forum on Leadership for Women Entrepreneurs, Red Roof celebrated its progress with 31 percent of its hotels owned or partially owned by women. This forum is designed to help women in hospitality develop deeper business acumen and stronger leadership skills.

Further, Red Roof statistics mirror the fact that women continue to progress in management ranks. There has been a 20 percent increase in women leadership at Red Roof over the past three years. Red Roof Chief Marketing Officer, Marina MacDonald, has been an industry leader in bringing together women to collaborate, educate and provide the tools and insights to help drive continued growth and support.

“The past two years have been challenging, especially for women. The impact the pandemic had on travel and hospitality exacerbated the pressure felt by women in our industry. As women juggle work lives and home lives, there really is no such thing as work/life balance. Rather, there are work/life choices that women are forced to make every day,” says Marina MacDonald. “I designed this hybrid professional/personal event to help our attendees further develop their business and leadership skills as well as the tools to take better care of themselves. Our goal is not only to help grow more successful and happy women entrepreneurs but also encourage the development of sustainable habits that will lead to a lifetime of success.”

About the Forum

This year, the Forum hosted more than 100 women attendees over two days. This includes Red Roof franchise owners, industry leaders and corporate team members. They’re all looking to collaborate and help one another overcome barriers to success. During the Forum, attendees had the opportunity to network, learn from and support each other and hear from inspirational and industry-leading experts – including Dr. Lalia Rach, Founder & Partner, Rach Enterprises; Mary Beth Cutshall, Founder & Managing Partner, Amara Capital; Regan Walsh, Chief Renegade Officer, Renegade Global; Laura Lee Blake, President and CEO, Asian American Hotel Owners Association.

All the speakers shared their journeys and challenges in reaching the highest levels of their fields. They shared advice on how to smash glass ceilings and improve yourself. Breakout sessions included topics such as side hustles, which have become increasingly popular since the pandemic. Other sessions included the characteristics of successful women, tips on public speaking and networking and the power and enrichment of giving back through community involvement. The top advice for women’s advancement included the following tips:

  • Be Heard. Have a Voice.
  • Be Authentic and be YOU.
  • Be Fearless, Bold and Brave. Take risks.
  • Tout Successes with Confidence.
  • Stay true to your Values, Vision and Passion.
  • Be comfortable being uncomfortable.

Women in Leadership

Recent research shows the hospitality industry is slowly making progress toward women in leadership. The statistics paint a picture trending toward increased diversity going forward. According to the 2022 Castell Project ‘Women in Hospitality Industry Leadership’ report, women are gaining in hotel company leadership at the highest levels (CEO, President, Founder). In fact, although still skewed, women now hold one leadership spot for every 10.3 men. This is an improvement from one to 11.2 in 2019. At the manager and director levels, women now hold 1 in 2 hospitality positions and 1 in 6 at the VP/SVP/EVP level. However, there is more work to do.

Red Roof will continue to lead the industry in supporting women. This is achieved through nurturing networking and providing opportunities and tools needed to reach higher levels in the hospitality industry.

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About Red Roof

Red Roof is an award-winning leader in the lodging industry, recognized for creating the innovative Upscale Economy segment serving millions of guests each year. Known for obsessively listening to consumers, Red Roof offers travelers a consistently high-quality experience at an affordable price. With coast-to-coast locations, Red Roof has over 670 properties and over 60,000 rooms in the U.S. and has expanded internationally to Brazil and Japan. Whether business or leisure, short trips or extended stays, in the hearts of cities or on the road, Red Roof has a property for every traveler, delivering an enhanced experience at a value price. Red Roof offers franchisees Genuine Relationships. Real Results. – a unique owner-operator experience establishing common ground with franchisees. To join the Red Roof industry-leading loyalty program, RediRewards, or for reservations, visit, call 800.RED.ROOF or download Red Roof’s free app that is available for both iOS and Android devices.

Want to read more about cool female entrepreneurs? Check out our featured podcast of the week: BossUp Babes!

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