Jeffrey H. Fisher
Chairman of the Board, CEO & President
Mr. Fisher is our chairman of the board, chief executive officer and president. Mr. Fisher is also the chairman, president and majority shareholder of IHM, a firm he founded in 2007 that currently manages 77 hotels for unaffiliated hotel owners. From 1994 to 2007, Mr. Fisher was chairman, chief executive officer and president of Innkeepers USA Trust, a lodging REIT he founded and took public in 1994 and was also chairman and majority shareholder of Innkeepers Hospitality, a privately owned hotel management company. Mr. Fisher grew Innkeepers’ portfolio from seven hotels at the time of its initial public offering to 74 hotels at the time of its sale. In June of 2007, Innkeepers was sold to an institutional investor at a total enterprise value of $1.5 billion. Between 1986 and 1994, he served as President and Chief Executive Officer of JF Hotel Management, Inc.
Mr. Fisher received a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration from Syracuse University in 1977, a Doctor of Jurisprudence degree from Nova Southeastern University in 1980, and a Masters of Law in Taxation from the University of Miami in 1981. He is a licensed attorney and practiced at Jones & Foster P.A. and Jeffrey H. Fisher P.A. for a total of five years prior to starting his career in the hospitality industry. Additionally, Mr. Fisher currently serves as a Board Member of Marriott’s The Residence Inn Association (TRIA).
Dennis M. Craven
Executive Vice President & COO
Mr. Craven is our Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer. Mr. Craven previously served as executive vice president and chief financial officer of Innkeepers USA Trust, a NYSE-listed hotel REIT, from March 2006 until the acquisition of Innkeepers by an affiliate of Apollo Investment Corporation in June 2007. Following the acquisition, he continued to serve as chief financial officer of Innkeepers until August 2010.
Prior to joining Innkeepers in 2006, Craven was a partner in Addison Capital Advisors, a venture capital firm based in Memphis, Tenn., and served as senior vice president and chief accounting officer of Independent Bank in Memphis. Prior to that, he served as vice president and controller, and later vice president and chief accounting officer, of RFS Hotel Investors, Inc., a NYSE-listed hotel REIT. Prior to joining RFS, he was a senior manager with PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP in Memphis and London.
Mr. Craven received his Bachelor of Accountancy from the University of Mississippi. He is a licensed Certified Public Accountant in the State of Mississippi.
Executive Vice President & Chief Investment Officer
Mr. Willis is our Executive Vice President and Chief Investment Officer. Mr. Willis has over 20 years of hotel acquisition experience. From 2001 to 2006, he served as Vice President of Acquisitions and Business Development for Innkeepers and oversaw over $500 million of investments in 18 hotels. From June 2006 to January 2009, Mr. Willis served as Senior Vice President at The Kor Group, a privately held, fully integrated real estate investment firm with a portfolio of over $2 billion in upscale hotel and resort investments, where he focused on U.S. and Caribbean acquisitions and third-party management contracts. While evaluating, negotiating and underwriting specific hotel investments and obtaining and negotiating management contract prospects, Mr. Willis also supported strategic acquisition and corporate planning efforts.
Mr. Willis also held positions with an industry-leading firm supporting the opening of luxury hotels. Establishing the organization’s first international operation in the Asia/Pacific region in 1994, he directed the repositioning and opening of properties throughout the region and in the United States. By 2001, Mr. Willis led overall strategic planning, business development and investor relations, as well as integrating acquisitions among the firm’s operating entities. Mr. Willis began as an analyst and asset manager of hotel, residential and commercial properties for Japanese investment firm JDC America in Tokyo and in the United States.
Mr. Willis received a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from the University of Florida in 1989 and has completed professional programs at Cornell University’s Hotel School and Obirin University in Tokyo.
Mr. Wegner has a significant track record of involvement in more than $50 billion of mergers, acquisitions and equity and debt financings. Prior to joining Chatham, he served as vice president of mergers and acquisitions for Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide where he was responsible for identifying and executing merger, acquisition, and divestiture opportunities.
At Starwood Mr. Wegner played a significant role in evaluating strategic alternatives for its timeshare business and executing the announced spin-off. Prior to that, he was a senior vice president in the real estate investment banking groups at Barclays Capital Inc. and Lehman Brothers where he covered the lodging sector for over ten years.
Mr. Wegner began his career as an analyst in the investment banking group at Credit Suisse in 1998. Mr. Wegner received a BA in Economics from Brown University.
Vice President, General Counsel & Secretary
Mr. Kentoff is our Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary, and joined the company in January 2011. Mr. Kentoff serves as the legal advisor to the senior management team and the board of trustees and has primary oversight and management responsibility for all legal affairs of the company.
Prior to joining Chatham, Mr. Kentoff previously served as Counsel at Innkeepers USA Trust from 2005 through 2010. Mr. Kentoff earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from Northwestern University and his Juris Doctorate from Emory University School of Law. He is a member of the Florida Bar.
Vice President of Financial Analysis
Mr. Fenton is our Vice President of Financial Analysis, and joined the company in April 2011. Mr. Fenton supports the analysis of capital transactions, acquisitions and divestitures, and corporate planning.
Prior to joining Chatham, Mr. Fenton previously served in the same capacity at Innkeepers USA Trust since 1996. Mr. Fenton received a Bachelor of Science in Finance from Auburn University and a MBA in Finance from Florida Atlantic University. He is a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA).