Joint WLA/WRA Operations to Begin October 1.
(September 2, 2015) This week the Washington Lodging Association and the Washington Restaurant Association signed a joint operating agreement and a master services agreement establishing a framework for working collaboratively on all fronts. Under the agreements, the WRA will provide management services to WLA out of its Olympia office, and current members will have dual membership in both associations.
Joint operations, which begin October 1, will leverage the WRA’s extensive staff resources. The membership and business development teams have already begun reaching out to WLA members to help them take advantage of expanded opportunities that come with dual membership.
Joining forces gives the hospitality industry a stronger voice and increases the capacity to address challenges at both the state and local levels. By working together, WRA and WLA will have an expanded government affairs team which includes staff and contract lobbyists as well as local representatives in key areas.
While the WLA and WRA Boards of Directors will remain in place over the next year, Directors from both organizations will begin working together on committees this Fall. A Joint Executive Committee is in place and the first joint Board of Directors meeting will be held in November in conjunction with WLA’s Annual Convention & Trade Show.
WRA’s CEO & President Anthony Anton will lead both associations, and Matt Van Der Peet, WLA’s chair and the general manager of Sheraton Bellevue Hotel, will serve as WLA’s president. The leadership of both associations remain committed to launching a unified hospitality association in 2016.