March 30, 2015 by · Leave a Comment
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Although Boston still has a great deal of snow on the ground, spring is just around the corner and Paul Tormey and his wonderful staff at the Fairmont Copley Plaza Hotel treated 81 Skal Boston members to an early “Walk in the Park” at the March 19 meeting.

The meeting features the hotel ballroom decorated with magnificent spring flowers and even a grass table runner.  Models wearing spring fashions walked the room while bunnies, baby chicks, ducks and baby swans where in a petting area.

Paul Tormey gave the Skal toast.  The monthly raffle raised over $900.00.

President Julie Doherty Pagano announced that some of our members will receive   honors from the American Lodging Association on April 14.  These awards are very prestigious and we are thrilled for our fellow club members.  Details will be posted as soon as the awards are presented.

Boston Skal will next meet on April 16 at the Seaport Hotel and on May 21 we will honor our Past Presidents at historic Fenway Park.

President Julie Doherty Pagano starts Presidency with Luncheon at the Boston Harbor Hotel

March 12, 2015 by · Leave a Comment
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More snow did not prevent the hardy Boston Skallegues from attending President Julie Doherty Pagano’s first meeting on February19 at the Boston Harbor Hotel.  Over 80 members trekked through the mountains of snow to attend the meeting.

Stephen Johnson, Skallegue and General Manager of the Boston Harbor Hotel was unable to attend but had Jennifer McMahon, Director of Sales & Marketing along with Rachel Stiglets, Director of Catering (wife of Skal member Brian Stiglets) and Chef Daniel Bruce welcome our members and participated in the Skal Toast.

The cocktail reception and luncheon was a tremendous treat.  The venue featured floor to ceiling windows overlooking frozen Boston Harbor and allowing everyone to see more snow falling.

President Julie presented the list of upcoming meeting venues and introduced SIUSA Rep, Holly Powers to report on the SIUSA Winter Board Meeting hosted January 23 – 25 by Skal Boston at the Hyatt Regency Boston.

Holly Powers presented David Colella the 2014 Presidents Award for his dedication to the Skal Boston club in hosting and organizing the annual Holiday Party raffle and auction and for working hard to establish the Bruce Leaver Scholarship.  The award was to be presented at the January Presidents and turnover luncheon by outgoing President Phil Stamm but by the time the presentation was to be made Phil realized that David had left the event.

Burt James was pinned by Board Member, Paul Sacco as a returning Skal Member.  We are happy to have him back in the club.

Beth Stehly organized the raffle and $950.00 was raised.  A special live auction featuring a night in the newly renovated Presidential Suite at the Lenox Hotel raised $1,250.00.

A great time was had by all and congratulations to President Julie Doherty Pagano for a wonderful first meeting.

See you in March at the Fairmont Copley Plaza  Hotel.



SIUSA Winter Board Meeting hosted by Skal Boston

February 4, 2015 by · Leave a Comment
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The SIUSA Winter Board Meeting was hosted by Skal Boston Jan 23 – 25, 2014 at the Hyatt Regency Boston.

Early arrivals were treated to a dinner at “Cheers” hosted by owner and Skal Boston member, Tom Kershaw.  Most attendees arrived in Boston in time to participate in Skal Bostons January luncheon and installation of officers.  The opening event was hosted by The Lenox Hotel and their General Manager, Dan Donahue, Skal Boston incoming Vice President.  The Winter Board meeting took place at the Hyatt and went from 9AM to 5:45PM on Saturday.  Outgoing President opened the meeting via conference call as he was unable to attend.  He turned the reigns of office over to Martha McClintock.  Observers attended from Albany, NY, Atlanta, Ga., Washington DC, Sacramento, CA, New York and Boston.  The closing dinner was held at “The Top of the Hub” Restaurant hosted by Raphael Oliver, a Skal Boston Member.  The cocktail party was followed by a 5 course dinner with wine.  Bouquets of flowers were given to everyone on departure.

“Thank you SI Boston for all your hospitality and for putting together an amazing event”  Paul Dhadda, SI Sacramento

“Outstanding Event.  Boston exceeded everyone’s expectations for the evening functions, and SI Boston was even able to work out the weather so everyone could arrive in Boston and leave on Sunday.”  Dick Knorpp  SI Washington DC

“Holly, thank you and the Boston club for a sterling experience.  Spending quality time with you and our colleagues was the highlight of the visit.”  John Ruzich, Skal New York

“What an amazing weekend in Boston – thank you and everyone from Skal Boston for hosting us.  It was truly a memorable experience and one I won’t soon forget.”  Dave Ryan, Skal Sacramento

76TH Anniversary and Installation of Officers

February 4, 2015 by · Leave a Comment
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On Friday, January 23, 2015, Skal Boston celebrated its 76th Anniversary and installation of officers at the Hyatt Regency Downtown.  Over 130 members and guests attended including members of SIUSA and Skal members from around the country.  The celebration honored Philip Stamm, outgoing President and his tremendously successful year.  Former President Bob Lawler served as Master of Ceremonies.  Lou Conkling, Skal International Director, Martha McClintock, SIUSA incoming President along with Julie Doherty Pagano and Phil Stamm gave the Skal Toast.  Lou Conkling officiated over the pinning of incoming officers.

Phil Stamm asked for a moment of silence for club members who have passed away this past year; Liem Sexton, R. Toby Dillas and Bruce Leaver.

Phil recapped the years accomplishments with Boston being selected as Skal International Club of the Year as well as the establishment and funding of the Bruce Leaver Scholarship.   He presented Presidential Awards to Terrilynn Haak for her tireless work running the monthly raffle for years and David Colella for hosting the Holiday party, raffle and auction each year.  A special medal was presented to Holly Powers for her work for Club of the Year and the SIUSA Winter Board Meeting.

Julie Doherty Pagano was chained by Phil and Lou Conkling as incoming President.  She outlined the upcoming year and pledged she would work hard to grow the club.

The Hyatt Regency staff did a tremendous job.  The cocktail hour featured special food stations and open bar.  There was a photo booth where people could have a photo of themselves with the Boston Skyline int the background.  After a fantastic lunch, guest enjoyed a desert room where drinks and coffee were served and cigars were rolled and enjoyed on the patio around a chestnut firm.

A great time was had by all.

Skal Boston Holiday Party and Fundraiser

January 8, 2015 by · Leave a Comment
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On Thursday, December 18, 2014, Skal International Boston Hosted its annual Holiday Party and Fundraiser.  This years recipient is the Charlie Davidson Leukemia Fund at Massachusetts General Hospital Children’s Center.  As in past years our event was sold out with over 250 members and guests attending.  Silent auction items were plentiful, as were raffle prizes and the live auction items were tremendous.  One 6 night trip to Ireland raised over $9,000.  Over $40,000 was raised for the charity.  Members of Charlie Davidson’s family and the head of the Children’s  Center at Mass General Hospital participated and a great time was had by all.

We thank our members and their guests for being generous and helping to make this event such a great success.  A special thank you must go out to Skal Member, David Colella, Managing Director of the Colonnade Hotel and his staff for hosting this annual event.  We could not do it without them.

Bruce Leaver Scholarship Fund Goal is Reached and Exceeded!

December 14, 2014 by · Leave a Comment
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President Phil Stamm announced the formation of the Bruce Leaver Scholarship at our June meeting to honor our beloved Past President, who died this past May.  Our goal was to raise $50,000 before our November meeting to fund a $3,000 per year scholarship for the next 20 years.  The scholarship will go to a candidate studying Hospitality and Tourism at the University of Massachusetts in Amherst.   Monthly raffle funds along with a few live auctions started the ball rolling.  We reached out to our membership and donations big and small came in.

Bruce’s wife Karen was our honored guest at our November 20 meeting.  She was overwhelmed and grateful for the kindness and support of our club members during Bruce’s illness and passing.   She said that her family was thrilled that a scholarship was started in Bruce’s honor.

President Stamm thanked the members for their support and announced that  in the past 5 months, we had collected over $67,000 and donations were still being received. 

Skal International Boston voted Skal International Club of the Year at World Congress in Mexico City

November 8, 2014 by · Leave a Comment
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November 3, 2014 (Boston, MA):  On October 25, 2014 Skal International President Karine Coulanges named Skal International Boston the Skal Club of the Year.  This announcement was made during the 75th Skal World Congress, which was held in Mexico City from October 25 – 30, 2014.

Skal International is a professional organization of tourism leaders around the world, promoting global tourism,.  It is the only international group uniting all branches of the travel and tourism industry.  Skal International today has approximately 22,000 members in 500 Clubs throughout 87 nations.

All Skal Clubs worldwide who meet six requirements are invited to participate in the race to be named Skal Club of the Year.  Skal Boston completed against six other clubs in the United States; Arkansas, Atlanta, Fort Worth, Raleigh-Durham, Tucson and Washington DC,  as well as three clubs outside of the country in Canada, Turkey and Africa.  Clubs were asked to produce a short video presentation outlining why they feel they deserve to be named “Skal Club of the Year”.

The Boston Skal Club showcased that the direction of the Club has been to bring the Skal International vision and mission to the travel and tourism industries in Greater Boston and throughout New England over the past 75 years.

Skal International President, Karine Coulange, was excited to honor Skal Boston with Club of the Year.  “The Boston organization has done great work over the years. their involvement, passion, charitable giving and fundraising are just a few items that make their organization the best qualified for this award.  Their growing membership is impressive as well.

The Skal International Boston Club is 75 years old, was the second club named in the United States and has the largest, most active membership in North American with 193 members throughout New England.  The club raises money for two scholarships and other charitable organizations and has raised over $500,000 for local charities since 1998.

The Michael O’Flynn Perpetual Trophy as well as Double Congress registrations for the 2015 Skal World Congress in Kenya were presented to Boston delegates, President, Phil Stamm, Executive Secretary/Treasurer, Holly Powers and Past President Mario Hache.

Phil Stamm, President of Skal International Boston stated, “I could not be prouder of the work our organization does year after year.  Skal International Boston is comprised of wonderful, passionate professionals who take pride in the Travel and Tourism Industry as well as this organization.  On behalf of the membership we are honored to be recognized as the Skal Club of the Year and are looking forward to many great years ahead.


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