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Leadership Team

Anil Valbh: Founder, Chairman and CEO

Anil Valbh

Anil Valbh is the Chairman, CEO and Founder of the Avista Group. He arrived in California in 1978 and soon began a venture in the hospitality business that was to eventually become one of the best known names in the industry. From a single 18-unit hotel to 65 hotels with a net value of over $100 Million, Avista has witnessed profound growth under the leadership of Anil.

With his remarkable skills as a hotelier and incontestable devotion towards growth, Anil has won a steadfast place for himself in the hotel industry. He is particularly recognized for his excellence as a franchise holder; Choice Hotels International have acknowledged Anil as one of their most successful and innovative franchisees.

An MBA from the Harvard School of Business, Anil is a seasoned entrepreneur and has made his way to numerous prestigious listings: in the first half of the "Top 100 Owners/Developers" by Hotel Business, a New York bi-monthly devoted to the hospitality industry, in the finalists list of Ernest & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award, and in the Top 25 Asian-American business people.

Besides work, this celebrated business personality also gives his family and community their due by sincerely devoting himself to all activities he undertakes. To strive for excellence in each role is Anil's mantra to being a successful citizen of society.

Ajit Nana: Senior Vice President

Ajit Nana

Ajit Nana holds the key responsibility of transforming visions into reality by managing projects from conception to completion. He oversees hotel and site acquisition and asset management for Avista.

His extensive experience of over 25 years in the hotel industry at various levels including operations, management, finance & accounting, development, human resources, risk management, revenue management and sales & marketing lend him an edge to ensuring excellence in every project the Group works on.

Besides his pivotal role at Avista, Ajit also holds the membership of the Franchise Advisory Committee for the Radisson Hotels for the Americas.

Gina LeMaster: Senior VP of Avista Retail Real Estate

Gina LeMaster

Gina is the head of day-to-day operations of Avista Retail & Development (LLC) and Avista Retail Management (LLC), a Division of Avista Holdings. She has 20 years of commercial real estate experience under her belt. She is also the exclusive broker for Advance Auto Parts for eight countries in Central Florida.

Gina has provided brokerage and/or development services to a significant number of prestigious companies such as Advance Auto Parts, 7-Eleven, Inc., LA Fitness, Publix Supermarket, CVS Pharmacy, Walgreens, Racetrac Petroleum, BP Products, McDonald's, Discount Tire Company, HighFive Frozen Yogurt, Donatos Pizza, Dunkin Donuts, YUM! Brands (KFC, Taco Bell, Pizza Hut, Long John Silvers, A & W Restaurants), Auto Zone, Wendy's Restaurant, Church's Chicken and numerous others.

Peggy Shih: Project Manager

Peggy Shih

Meiling (Peggy) Shih has held the responsibilities of overseeing operations and purchasing at the corporate office of Avista Hotels & Resorts since 2004. She assists the President, Sr. Vice President and other top management teams with operations and construction-related projects including those of local and international purchasing and coordination. Peggy is a Bachelor's in Tourism and a Master's in Business Administration from the California State University, Stanislaus.

Ryan Irven, Cha: Regional Director of Operations and Openings

Ryan Irven, Cha

Ryan drives top-line revenues, optimizes expenses and works at maintaining a healthy service culture at the property level. Besides this, he also oversees hotel renovations and pre-openings. He's been working with Avista since 2008 when he joined as General Manager of the Holiday Inn Hotel and Suites in Orlando, Florida. His experience of 20 years lies across roles like revenue & yield management, food & beverage operations and sales & marketing.

Angela Santiago: Regional e-Commerce Revenue & Sales Manager

Angela Santiago

Angela Santiago is a fine example of professional excellence in the hospitality industry, born out of passion, perseverance and a quest for knowledge. She joined Avista Hotels & Resorts in 2011 with 10 rich years of experience. Her expertise spans over many areas relevant to the industry, including Customer Service & Operations, Accounting, Revenue Management and Sales & Marketing. At Avista, she manages brands, group acquisitions, e-Commerce, data analysis, revenue management, tourism, online travel agencies and corporate accounts.

Jenny Page: Global Director of Sales & Marketing

Jenny Page

Jenny specializes in areas of operations, sales & marketing and customer service. She's been associated with Avista since 2013 and manages strategic sales (local, national and international), marketing avenues including multi-brand management, full-service banquet and revenue management. Jenny's popularity in the Florida hospitality industry and her 20 years of experience continue to help Avista achieve remarkable sales & marketing goals.

Dmitry Proiavko - IT and Graphic Designer

Dmitry Proiavko

A marvel of a graphic designer, Dmitry's work first got noticed when he was working at one of Avista's hotels in Orlando. Since then there's been no stopping for him as he moves up the corporate ladder with his exceptional skills in IT and graphic designing. He builds technical support systems for the properties, wireless networks, graphics, and websites, and supports other functions like research and documentation.

Education wise, Dmitry has a degree as an Engineer Technologist from the National University of Transportation in Kiev, Ukraine, and is currently studying to obtain a bachelor's degree at the University of Central Florida.