Orlando Hotelier and Philanthropist Harris Rosen Accepts Entrepreneur of the Year Award, Gives Public Address at His Alma Mater, Cornell University
Rosen Honored with Prestigious Alumni Award during Annual Entrepreneurship@Cornell Celebration April 14-15
ORLANDO (April 20, 2011) -- Orlando businessman and philanthropist Harris Rosen, who was recently named Cornell Entrepreneur of the Year 2011, accepted the honor in a keynote address to fellow alumni, students, faculty and staff during the school’s annual Entrepreneurship@Cornell Celebration on April 14 at the university’s Statler Auditorium.
The two-day conference, held April 14-15, was attended by more than 900 students, alumni, faculty and staff from 11 colleges and programs throughout the university and featured symposia from participating groups; the final stages of two business idea contests; a showcase of soon-to-be commercial technologies; a technology, business and resource expo and a gala banquet.
The Cornell Entrepreneur of the Year 2011 award is given annually to a Cornell University graduate who best exemplifies entrepreneurial achievement, community service and high ethical standards. Now the President & COO of Rosen Hotels & Resorts® in Orlando, Rosen received his Bachelor of Science degree from the Cornell University School of Hotel Administration in 1961. After working for several hotel chains, Rosen purchased a bankrupt 256-room Quality Inn in Orlando in 1974 and now owns and operates the largest independent hotel chain in Florida with 6,300 rooms, or approximately six percent of the total room inventory in Central Florida. His lodging portfolio includes seven properties in the Orlando area, including three convention hotels within one mile of the Orange County Convention Center — Rosen Plaza®, Rosen Centre® and Rosen Shingle Creek® — and four leisure hotels — Rosen Inn at Pointe Orlando, Rosen Inn closest to Universal, Quality Inn International and the Clarion Inn Lake Buena Vista.
In his keynote address, Rosen said, "Lately, more entrepreneurs are understanding they have a responsibility to give back and be thankful for the blessings they've received. It’s a wonderful trend that is gaining momentum which is gratifying to see."
Past recipients of the Cornell Entrepreneur of the Year award have included Lubna Olayan (2010), CEO of Olayan Financing Company, the holding company for Olayan Group’s operations in Saudi Arabia and the Middle East; Jay Walker (2009), founder of Priceline.com; Howard Milstein (2008), co-chairman, president and CEO of Emigrant Savings Bank and its holding company, New York Private Bank and Trust, and managing partner of Milstein Properties; Kevin McGovern (2007), CEO and Chairman of McGovern Capital and key shareholder in more than 15 companies.
For the last four years, Rosen has hosted a group of Cornell University students for "Alternative Spring Break" in which they spend one week in Orlando working with at-risk youth from the disadvantaged Tangelo Park neighborhood. The spring break program works hand-in-hand with Rosen's Tangelo Park Program that he created in 1994 to benefit children and teens in the once drug- and crime-riddled neighborhood. Through the program, Rosen provides a free preschool education for all 2-, 3- and 4-year-olds, and all Tangelo Park youth who are accepted to a vocational school, community college, junior college or a four-year public college in Florida receive a completely free education to include, tuition, books, room and board. Thus far, approximately 190 Tangelo Park students have received full college scholarships.
In 2009 and 2010, the Orlando Business Journal recognized Rosen as a "Healthcare Hero" and one of the area's "Top 10 CEOs," a recognition he has received for many years. In 2007, he was honored by readers of Orlando Magazine for making the "Best Contribution to Orlando" and as one of the area's "Most Influential Executives." He was also named "Best Corporate Citizen" by the magazine in 2006, 2007 and 2010.
Rosen received Sustainable Florida's Legacy Award in 2010 for his environmental efforts and community contributions, the "Citizen of the Year" award by the Florida School Board Association in 2009 and numerous industry awards including being inducting into the Visit Florida "Tourism Hall of Fame" in 2010 and being named "Hotelier of the Year" by the Florida Restaurant and Lodging Association in 2010.
Over the past 37 years, Rosen Hotels & Resorts® has grown from 256 to approximately 6,300 rooms, approximately six percent of the total guest rooms in Central Florida. Today, the Rosen family of hotels, which includes the AAA Four Diamond Rosen Shingle Creek®, the award-winning Rosen Centre® and Rosen Plaza®, and four leisure properties ideally located in the Orlando tourist corridor, including Rosen Inn at Pointe Orlando, Rosen Inn, Quality Inn International and the Clarion Inn Lake Buena Vista, remain committed to providing outstanding value for all guests.
For more information, visit www.rosenhotels.com or call 866-33-ROSEN.
For more information on Entrepreneurship @ Cornell Celebration 2011, visit entrepreneurship.cornell.edu/activities/celebration/2011.