[Orlando, Fla] Representatives from the Florida Restaurant & Lodging Association (FRLA) recognized the commitment and service of the late David Burke in a ceremony held on Sept. 15. The Hospitality Stars of the Industry Celebration honors men and women from around the Sunshine State for their remarkable work in hospitality, and the FRLA chose Burke as the 2019 Hotelier of the Year. This distinction places the recently-passed Executive Vice President and Chief Sales & Marketing Officer for the Breakers Palm Beach in the association’s Hall of Fame, reserved for those who have dedicated decades to providing excellent service and leadership in hospitality.
“David was a highly valued member of the Florida hospitality industry and a dear friend of mine and the association’s. I am honored to induct him into our Hall of Fame,” said Carol Dover, CEO and President of FRLA. “His passion for this industry shined through all the amazing things he did throughout his career and life. He was a beloved friend and will be dearly missed.”
Originally from Bethlehem, Pa., David Burke arrived at The Breakers Palm Beach in 1991 after ten years with Hyatt Hotels & Resorts. His career began after graduating from Florida International University with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Hospitality Management, at the Boca Raton Resort & Club. After two years, he joined Hyatt and worked for a variety of locations including Maui, San Francisco, Lake Tahoe and the Caribbean. While in Hawaii, he oversaw marketing for five of the company’s resorts totaling more than 5,000 rooms. With more than 40 years in the industry, 27 of them at The Breakers, Burke was passionate about hospitality.
David served as a member of the FRLA Board of Directors beginning in 2014, and most recently served as Chair of the 2018 Government Relations Committee. He was also President of FRLA’s Palm Beach Chapter before passing.