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Feb. 23  — After Arne Sorenson, 62, died last week of pancreatic cancer, Marriott International named Anthony Capuano as CEO. Capuano, 55, who was previously Global Production, Design and Operation Services group president, will also join the board of directors of the company, effective immediately, Marriott said in a statement Tuesday.Sorenson, the third CEO of the hotel chain and first without the Marriott surname, died of pancreatic cancer on Feb. 15, the firm announced last week.

After winning a $13 billion deal to buy Starwood Hotels & Resorts about five years ago, he was credited with turning Marriott into the world’s largest hotel chain. He was called “a visionary leader who put the company on a strong trajectory of growth.”Capuano said in a tweet, “I am honored to be appointed to take the helm of Marriott, but it is a bittersweet moment,” To and member of his close-knit leadership team, Arne was a mentor, a champion and a comrade. It is because of Arne’s efforts that we are prepared to move forward with this transition.

“Together, we will advance the strategy we have in place, which is laser-focused on recovery, expansion, providing opportunities for our associates, maintaining constructive relationships with our owners and franchisees, delivering safe and innovative experiences for our guests and customers, and building value for our shareholders.”Since 1995, when he joined the Business Research and Feasibility team, Capuano has been employed with Marriott and made his way up the ranks from there, to executive vice president and global chief development officer in 2009.

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Although Capuano led global expansion, the company increased its footprint to over 7,600 properties by the end of 2020 from just over 3,200 properties in early 2009, Marriott noted.”Capuano led an effort during the COVID-19 pandemic to develop cleaning procedures to provide “peace of mind for passengers,” the company’s statement said. On Tuesday, Marriott also said that Stephanie Linnartz, 52, former group president of Customer Operations, Technology and Emerging Market, was named president, effective immediately.

Every member of the leadership team feels a deep sense of loss at the passing of Arne. He was not just a friend and a leader for us, he was a hospitality industry guide,”Every member of the leadership team feels a profound sense of loss at Arne’s passing. He was not just a friend and a leader for us, he was a guidepost for the hospitality industry,”He was not just a friend and a leader for us.”The best way we can honor Arne’s memory is to continue to move the company forward.

It is my privilege to take on the role of president and to work with Tony and the rest of the executive team to ensure a seamless transition and to successfully execute our strategy.”Since 1997, Linnartz has served with Marriott before serving as Group President of Customer Operations, Technology and Emerging Market, serving as Global Chief Commercial Officer, Global Officer of Sales and Revenue Management, and Senior Vice President of Global Sales, and numerous other positions.Linnartz played a “pivotal role,” during Marriott’s acquisition of Starwood Hotels & Resorts, the company noted, “overseeing the integration of business-critical systems including reservations, property management, revenue management and loyalty,”

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