Susan Terry is a seasoned veteran of the hospitality industry.
Joining Hilton Hotels and Resorts in 2018, Terry directed the strategic food & beverage operation for 42 managed Hilton Hotels in North America, the Caribbean, Mexico and South America. Her responsibilities included hotel openings, planning and design review, as well as financial and guest satisfaction performance. Terry led the development of the region’s all-inclusive hotel operating guidelines and standards including quality, guest experience, food & beverage venue concepts, safety and sanitation protocols and special guest experiences. Terry led Hilton’s special food & beverage operations team in producing EventReady protocols for Banquets and Events, meeting and exceeding the operations needs during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Prior to joining Hilton, in 2016 Terry was named Vice President of Culinary and Food & Beverage Operations for Marcus Hotels and Resorts. In this role Terry was responsible for the portfolio’s full service owned and franchise hotels and resorts overseeing food and beverage concept development and specialty restaurants. Terry developed operational and quality control guidelines for the company’s catering business, and defined food and beverage specifications. Her role at Marcus included directing the new build and design criteria for specialty outlets, and she was responsible for financial performance with an emphasis on food and labor cost controls.
Terry’s professional career started as a Hyatt Hotels and Resorts culinary team member, where she moved through culinary positions spanning 25 years. In her role as Vice President of Culinary Operations—Americas Region, Terry was responsible for the overall success of food and beverage operations at Hyatt Hotels and Resorts in the U.S., Canada, Caribbean, Central and South America, including in-room dining, restaurants, banquets, beverage, and all other food and beverage outlets in the hotels. She worked directly with Hyatt’s Senior Vice President of Operations and Hyatt’s field operations teams.
Terry was appointed to the position of Vice President of Culinary Operations in 2011, after an extensive tenure working in the culinary department for Hyatt. In 2012, Terry championed Hyatt’s industry leading, global philosophy, “Food. Thoughtfully Sourced. Carefully Served,” which was developed in association with Partnership for a Healthier America and was designed to provide sustainable and responsible food and beverage menus to benefit Hyatt’s hotel guests, company associates and community neighbors. The philosophy is based on three pillars: Healthy People; Healthy Planet; Healthy Communities. In 2014, the company introduced free-range beef in its US full-service hotels, an addition to the mandated cage free eggs, organic vegetables, and sustainable seafood that were rolled out the year prior.
In the same year Terry launched Food. Thoughtfully Sourced. Carefully Served, she was responsible for discovering 11-year-old, food youth advocate, Haile Thomas, and with her guidance, produced Hyatt’s “For Kids, By Kids,” menu. The kid tasted, tested, and approved, healthier menu, eliminated the use of packaged, processed and fried foods, and took on an interactive, fun and flavorful approach, changing Hyatt’s approach to kids’ menu programming philosophy.
Terry sought out celebrity Chef Alice Waters, and inked Waters’ first hotel partnership deal in 2012. The partnership furthers both the Food. Thoughtfully Sourced. Carefully Served and For Kids, By Kids messages, and presented a 100 percent organic youth menu to Hyatt customers. The prix–fixe menu featured a salad, chicken entrée and dessert, and was the first of its kind offering made by any global hospitality company.
Terry began her career in the kitchen and worked her way through an ascending series of culinary and food & beverage positions. She is often a go to expert source for publications including USA Today and The Wall Street Journal, for her take on hotel and culinary operations. In 2012, Terry appeared on the cover of Hotel F&B magazine and in 2018 was awarded the industry IFMA Silver Plate for excellence in food & beverage.