Rob Howell, United States General Manager of the Year


Shawnee on Delaware, PA – The Shawnee Inn and Golf Resort’s General Manager, Rob Howell, chosen last year as Pennsylvania General Manager of the Year, has now been chosen as the 2011 United States General Manager of the Year by the American Hotel and Lodging Association (AH&LA).

The AH&LA chose to honor Mr. Howell with the prestigious United States General Manager of the Year award because of his innovative stewardship of the historic Shawnee Inn and Golf Resort and his role as a leader in the tourism industry in Pennsylvania and the Pocono Mountains.

“The owners of the resort, the Kirkwood Family, have allowed me a great deal of latitude to develop a plan for the resurgence of Shawnee and this has inspired a creative atmosphere that has revitalized our resort”, said Howell.  In 2007, the resort began what we now call Shawnee’s Renaissance.  In addition to continuing property renovations, Mr. Howell has introduced environmental and conservation projects appropriate to the resort in the Northeast nestled along the Delaware River, only 73 miles from New York City.

The Pocono Mountains is a resort destination with many mixed messages and a guest base that may not realize the extent of its beautiful environment and interesting history given its proximity to New York City.  Shawnee’s Renaissance is an attempt to not only reinvent itself, but also help to reposition the Pocono Mountains as an interesting “green” destination.

Mr. Howell’s vision transcends the traditional hospitality approach.  In addition to advancing Shawnee’s guest service, Mr. Howell put a significant emphasis on the outdoors and the breathtaking natural environment that surrounds the resort.  “Encouraging our guests to engage in an activity that takes them into the outdoors is one of our focuses.  Whether people want to hike or bike or spend time on the river we make it easy for them to do whatever it is they love or would like to try.” Shawnee’s rich tradition of nurturing nature inspired Mr. Howell to completely embrace Shawnee’s unique surroundings.  From ensuring the historic grounds of the Shawnee Inn are pristine to developing the 32,000 sq. ft. Great Shawna Island Farm and Apiary, the resort’s offerings have been revolutionized.  Guests of Shawnee can now experience the destination in a true holistic way.

Shawnee’s staff has taken ownership of the resort’s vision – many of whom since have received regional honors for their outstanding guest service.  “I am humbled by the magnitude of this honor and inspired by the cooperation of the staff of our resort who continue to reimagine this destination”, said Howell.    In 2009, through Mr. Howell’s leadership, Shawnee staff members formed the Shawnee Green Team which maximizes Shawnee’s vision by expanding upon the resort’s environmental plan.  Mr. Howell added that, “The Commitment of our staff to our vision, our mission and green efforts is truly inspirational.  This award is for all of them and the direction they are taking Shawnee.”      

Mr. Howell was honored as Pennsylvania’s 2009 General Manager of the Year by the Pennsylvania Tourism and Lodging Association at their annual convention.  He has been a part of the Shawnee family since 1994 and is deeply involved in the tourism industry here serving as a Board Member of the Pennsylvania Tourism and Lodging Association.  

About The Shawnee Inn and Golf Resort
The Shawnee Inn and Golf Resort, rich in breathtaking views, features 80 rooms in the historic Inn, 12 rooms in the Delaware Lodge, plus six suites and two cottages in Shawnee’s luxury accommodation, the Legacy Collection. Shawnee’s varieties of recreational facilities make it an ideal destination for any event. Choose from Shawnee’s 27-hole championship island golf course, golf lessons at the Tillinghast Golf Academy, nine-hole lighted Tillinghast Approach Course, skiing at Shawnee Mountain, mountain biking, or hiking on the scenic Appalachian Mountain trails, canoeing, rafting, fishing, kayaking, indoor pool, fitness room, tennis, professional theater, and Spa Shawnee and Salon.

The Shawnee Inn and Golf Resort is conveniently located 70 miles from New York City, 100 miles from Philadelphia, 150 miles from Albany, N.Y. and 200 miles from Washington, D.C.  Three airports – Lehigh Valley International, Wilkes-Barre/Scranton and Newark International – all are within easy distance of the property. Please visit for additional information.