Central Florida Hotel and Lodging Association Commits $50K for Wine Tasting Classroom


Left to right: Jetse Pottinga, general manager, Melia Orlando Suite Hotel at Celebration; Laura Sherman, general manager, CLC Encantada Resort; Jim Inglis, program director, Valencia hospitality and restaurant management and professor, hospitality/tourism; Doug Ridge, general manager, Orlando World Center Marriot; Gerald Urquiola, general manager, Caribe Royale Resort and Convention Center; Sandy Shugart, president, Valencia College; and Fred Sawyers, complex general manager, Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort

A message from Falecia Williams, President, West Campus

The Central Florida Hotel and Lodging Association (CFHLA) is a longtime partner with Valencia’s hospitality program. Several projects over the years have been supported by the organization, which is the largest of its kind in the country.

The latest example of the organization’s strong support of the program is the wine tasting classroom in Building 8. The organization has committed $50,000 over the next 10 years to set up and equip the classroom. Richard Maladecki, CFHLA president, is a good friend of Valencia’s hospitality program and was instrumental in helping to arrange the grant for the project.


The creation of this room was a coordinated effort that involved almost all areas of the campus including the campus president’s office, facilities planning, plant operations, campus operations and the business and hospitality academic division.

While many people played important roles in the project, the division would like to particularly thank Kathy Hauser, manager of campus operations; Brenda Jones, facilities specialist; and Marsha Clarke-Ferguson, administrative assistant, for their hard work in bringing everything together in such a short period of time.

Through this generous gift, students benefit from a well-equipped classroom that allows them to learn about the role of wine in the culinary and hospitality industry.

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