More About the Best Parks Additions
Following is additional biographical information on Deb Kohls and Joe Opp, who are joining Best Parks in America (BPA) in management and advisory roles, respectively.
Kohls, currently the vice president of business development at Leisure Interactive of Anaheim, Calif., will be joining Best Parks on Nov. 1 as BPA’s vice president. Kohls will have responsibility for affiliate and consumer relations and development. She will also serve on the new board of directors of the re-structured BPA system.
“I’ve know Deb since 2001 when she became part of the founding team at Friend Communications and I’ve always been impressed with her insightful thinking, passion for travel and tourism and for moving the park industry into the larger world of travel and tourism, and for her ability to develop and nurture relationships among people of all persuasions, “ said David Gorin, BPA founder and president. “In searching the park industry for a highly qualified executive to join the BPA team, Deb’s qualifications, energy and passion for the Best Parks mission stood out above all others,” he said.
Kohls’ career included a stint at Fleetwood Enterprises in their Supply Division, Accounting Department and the Information Technology Services Group. She also has experience as a sales executive with some of the world’s major technology companies including Hewlett Packard, EDS and Sun Microsystems where she developed and managed large customer accounts including Apple, Intel, Kaiser Permanente and the Bank of Hawaii.
At Leisure Interactive, formerly Friend Communications, she was instrumental in introducing the industry’s first real-time Internet marketing solution for the outdoor hospitality and recreation marketplace. Kohls played a key role in growing the business to over 800 campgrounds and RV parks that now use the Leisure Interactive Hercules park management and reservation software.
Former Leading Hotels Exec Teams with Best Parks
Opp recently retired as senior vice president of membership services of Leading Hotels of the World and will join BPA as senior adviser for brand development.
Opp has a long track record of success in the travel business having served as reservation manager for National Airlines, director of reservations for Avis Rent a Car, director of reservations for Pacific Southwest Airlines and vice president of marketing automation for TrustHouse Forte Hotels.
From 1996 until his retirement at the end of 2010, Opp was the senior vice president for membership services at Leading Hotels of the World. LHW is a marketing consortium comprised of a select group of independently owned hotels around the world. LHW has members in every major U.S. market including New York, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Miami, Philadelphia, Houston, New Orleans, and Boston.
“Best Parks in America is based on the Leading Hotels of the World model and there is no one else with the breadth of experience in how LHW works and how it’s become such as great success in the hotel business than Joe Opp. I can’t begin to express how proud and pleased I am that Joe has accepted our offer to become a senior adviser to Best Parks,” said Gorin.