I am pleased to announce that we have completed the recruiting and hiring process and that Matt Rutigliano has been selected as the new executive director of the Daniel C. Gainey Conference Center in Owatonna, reporting to me effective Monday, Oct. 31.

Matt brings 18 years of experience in hotel operations and management, including seven years as a general manager in full-service hotels. Matt has worked at properties which include: Crowne Plaza (Kansas City, Mo.), Holiday Inn (College Park, Md.), Kingsmill Resort Club and Spa (Williamsburg, Va.), Wayfarer Inn (Bedford, N.H.), Crowne Plaza (Nashua, N.H.), Landmark Inn (Laconia, N.H.) and Sheraton Tara Hotel (Newton, Mass.).

Matt is extremely familiar with all operations of a facility like Gainey and has direct experience in the supervision of sales, room operations, food and beverage operations, accounting and human resources, with extensive experience in controlling and managing budgets and income statements.

As you can see, the lifestyle of a career in the hotel industry is one of constant change and relocation. Matt was looking for a place to raise his family in a stable, nurturing environment, and we are grateful that he found Owatonna, the Gainey Conference Center and the University of St. Thomas to be that place.

Matt, his wife Christine and their children Mitchell (13), Samantha (12) and Abigail (10) will be relocating to the Owatonna area in the near future.

I want to thank Pam Peterson, Business Office; Carolyn Milbrath, Human Resources; and Doug Hennes, University Relations, for serving with me on the search committee for the position.