Hilton Recognizes Team Members With 2017 CEO Light & Warmth Award

Company's highest accolade awarded to employees who make exceptional impact on colleagues, guests, communities.

On Feb. 28,  Hilton (No. 30 on the DiversityInc Top 50 Companies list) awarded 12 Team Members with the company's most prestigious recognition: the 2017 CEO Light & Warmth Award. The annual accolade celebrates Team Members from across levels and geographies who consistently over-deliver on the job and model the company's values of Hospitality, Integrity, Leadership, Teamwork, Ownership and Now.


This year's recipients range from chefs and bartenders to managers and laundry attendants, and have gone beyond their job duties to provide for fellow colleagues, guests and their communities. That includes supporting colleagues and their families during the natural disasters from the hurricanes in Texas and Puerto Rico to the wildfires in California.

"Over the last nearly 100 years, Hilton has spread the light and warmth of hospitality to countless guests around the world thanks to our incredible Team Members," said Christopher J. Nassetta, president and CEO, Hilton. "We know that our people are our greatest asset, and that's why we believe it is important to celebrate their contributions. Our 2017 CEO Light & Warmth Award recipients are truly inspiring, purposeful individuals, and it is an honor to recognize them for their tremendous positive impact."

This year, nearly 1,000 Team Members from across Hilton's managed and franchise network submitted CEO Light & Warmth Award nominations, and Nassetta and a committee of representatives from across the company selected the 12 recipients:

  • Siba Ayoub, Executive Secretary and Assistant Learning & Development Manager - DoubleTree by Hilton Aqaba
  • Amila Botheju, Sous Chef - Hilton Colombo
  • Alex Bury, Laundry Attendant - Hilton Salt Lake City Center
  • Pam Calhoun, Breakfast Attendant - Hampton Inn & Suites Tampa North
  • Jasbeer Dawar, Executive Chef - Hilton London Heathrow Airport Terminal 5
  • Lucas Haiputa, Recreational Attendant - Hilton Windhoek
  • Kay Jackson, Maintenance Manager - Hilton Northampton
  • Jessica Kerns, Banquet Server/Bartender, DoubleTree by Hilton Sonoma Wine Country
  • Lissette Landestoy, Regional Purchasing Manager - Hilton Supply Management
  • Luz Pallens, Cafetería Cook - Embassy Suites by Hilton Dorado del Mar Beach Resort
  • Ryan Preston, General Manager - Hampton Inn & Suites Riverton
  • Adrienne Putelli, Human Resources Manager - Hilton Brisbane

Each recipient will receive a $10,000 bonus, among other prizes. Hilton has awarded more than $690,000 since the recognition was established in 2009.

The CEO Light & Warmth Award is one of many ways Hilton recognizes and supports its 380,000 Team Members around the globe to ensure they thrive in Body, Mind and Spirit. The company expanded its "people framework" in July with the launch of Thrive@Hilton, which aims to drive more mindful leadership and transform the way Team Members think about work. Thrive@Hilton's focus on continuous improvement has inspired many new workplace innovations, including new creative ways for Team Members to regularly and authentically thank each other for their performance and loyalty.

New initiatives in 2017 included the creation of a simple recognition app, the opening of a virtual "store" through which leaders "purchase" physical recognitions with points and the establishment of the Innovation Award, which celebrates Team Members' new solutions.

Learn about career opportunities at Hilton 

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Hilton Names Global Head Of Diversity & Inclusion

"As a global hospitality company, it's increasingly important to leverage the benefits of an intentional diversity and inclusion management practice to drive sustainable engagement and company performance," said Muñoz.

Hilton has named Jon Muñoz as Vice President, Global Diversity & Inclusion. In his new role, Muñoz will oversee Hilton's global diversity management practice, focusing on developing culture, talent and marketplace strategies that cultivate inclusion.

Already known as one of the World's Best Workplaces, Hilton was recognized in 2017 for its diversity and inclusion efforts by DiversityInc, Fortune, Forbes, Human Rights Campaign, National Business Inclusion Consortium and LATINA Style.

Muñoz joined Hilton in 2011 as Senior Director, Diversity & Inclusion and has played a key role in driving Hilton's global diversity and inclusion efforts. Prior to joining Hilton, Muñoz served in diversity roles for Sprint and multicultural marketing roles for Nextel Communications, Bank One (JPMorgan Chase) and NationsBank (Bank of America).

"As a global hospitality company, it's increasingly important to leverage the benefits of an intentional diversity and inclusion management practice to drive sustainable engagement and company performance," said Muñoz. "I'm proud of the important strides we've made on our diversity and inclusion journey at Hilton and look forward to building on those successes to support our mission to be the most hospitable company in the world."

"In his seven years at Hilton, Jon has built a track record for success, providing leadership for our comprehensive, and now award-winning, diversity and inclusion program," Matthew W. Schuyler, Chief Human Resources Officer, Hilton. "This role is incredibly important as we continue to create welcoming and inclusive work environments for all, and amazing experiences for our guests."

Muñoz actively serves in leadership roles at a diverse nonprofit organizations including: Conference Board Diversity and Inclusion Center Advisory Board, Friends of the American Latino Museum Treasurer of the Board of Directors, International Gay & Lesbian Travel Association Vice Chair of the Board of Directors, League of United Latin American Citizens Corporate Alliance, National Association for the Advancement of Colored People ACT-SO Advisory Council, National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce Co-Chair of the Corporate Advisory Council, and the United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Senior Executive Corporate Advisory Board. He is also a co-founder of the National Hispanic Corporate Council Corporate Executive Development Program (CEDP), offered in partnership with Southern Methodist University Cox School of Business. The CEDP is dedicated to advancing Hispanic managers to executive positions in global enterprises.

Muñoz holds a Bachelor of Science in communications and advertising from the University of Texas at Austin.