Wequassett Faculty

At Wequassett Academy, our professors possess a rich and diverse background with an abundance of business and hospitality skills.  The benefits of working with and being taught by them offers you the unique opportunity to learn both on-the-job and in a classroom setting.  The added benefit of learning from a group of professionals who are genuinely familiar with real world experience ensures that the knowledge you gain will be both useful and relevant.

CHAIRMAN OF THE BOARD
Mark J. Novota, Chairman of the Board,  Professor – With nearly twenty-five years of experience, Mark’s passion for the industry is as fresh today as when he began his hospitality career.  As the founding member of the academy, his commitment to establishing a meaningful learning institution with a combined emphasis on both the passion of service and the technical proficiency is a key priority.  Mark has been with Wequassett Resort and Golf Club for twenty years and is the managing partner.  He worked with his team to transform the resort into a world-class destination along with the implementation of the customer intimate operating philosophy.  His educational background includes an emphasis on accounting, business, and sales and marketing along with some graduate work at Boston University in communications.

DIRECTOR OF LEARNING

Kara Lachance, Dean and Professor – Kara has enjoyed a successful career at the Resort since 2007.  She worked two seasons within the Catering Department and two seasons as Conference Service Manager.  Kara won the prestigious “leader of the Year” two seasons in a row as Conference Service Manager at the Resort.  Before her Wequassett days, Kara worked with ESPN radio, Clear Channel Communications and Walt Disney World where she earned her “Mouse-ters” and her “Duck-torate” in Customer Service at the Disney Institute.  Kara is a proud graduate from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst.  In 2011, Kara has assumed the role of the Resort’s Director of Learning.

DEANS

SCHOOL OF CUSTOMER INTIMACY

Jamie McPhee, Dean and Professor – Jamie joined the Wequassett team five years ago.  In those five years, Jamie has worked in the Executive Office, was the Director of Membership Services for the Pleasant Bay Beach and Tennis Club, implemented GuestWare Tracking software, and was Guest Service Manager at the Front Desk.  Jamie studied at Northeastern University where she earned a BS degree in Communications and Sociology.  Jamie had the pleasure of spending her junior year abroad at Goldsmith’s University in London and traveled extensively through Europe.  In 2011, Jamie was promoted to Director of Guest Relations.

SCHOOL OF TECHNICAL TRAINING

Kara Lachance, Dean and Professor – Kara has enjoyed a successful career at the Resort since 2007.  She worked two seasons within the Catering Department and two seasons as Conference Service Manager.  Kara won the prestigious “leader of the Year” two seasons in a row as Conference Service Manager at the Resort.  Before her Wequassett days, Kara worked with ESPN radio, Clear Channel Communications and Walt Disney World where she earned her “Mouse-ters” and her “Duck-torate” in Customer Service at the Disney Institute.  Kara is a proud graduate from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst.  In 2011, Kara has assumed the role of the Resort’s Director of Learning.

SCHOOL OF INFORMATION & TECHNOLOGY

SCHOOL OF MANAGEMENT

SAMPLE OF OUR PROFESSORS

Tim Vickers, Professor – Serving as the chief financial officer for Wequassett Resort and Golf Club, Tim joined the resort in 1998 bringing a wealth of knowledge from both his educational and professional experience.  He is a proud graduate of Cornell University and has enjoyed an outstanding career including a regional post at the Boston Harbor Hotel for the DoubleTree Hotel Company.

Jason Brauer, Professor – Jason was most recently the Director of Food and Beverage at the exclusive Fisher Island Club and Resort in Miami, Florida, a private island residential community and club where he oversaw seven food and beverage outlets.  Jason’s prior experience includes ten years of food and beverage management with Ritz-Carlton.  These posts include:  Pentagon City, Virginia, Coconut Grove, Florida, Osaka, Japan, Washington D.C., Shanghai, China and San Francisco, California.

John Collins, Professor – As our Director of Human Resources, John offers a tremendous amount of high-end hospitality experience to the team.  John graduated Magna Cum Laude at Tufts University earning a Bachelor’s of Arts in Economics.  John began his hospitality career with the Ritz Carlton in Boston which eventually flourished into a 27 year career with this fine organization.  While with the Ritz. John held various positions such as Director of Food & Beverage, Director of Catering, Director of Quality and most recently Area Director of Human Resources.  In addition to the Boston properties, John had the opportunity to work at other Ritz properties including Laguna Niguel, Philadelphia and Kansas City.  John participated in the process which earned the Ritz Carlton the prestigious Malcolm Baldridge National Quality Award and is also a certified Senior Professional in Human Resources.

Josette Cristalli Willis, Professor – Josette has enjoyed a successful career at the resort since 1991 where she has contributed in a variety of different positions including reservations, sales, and human resources where she currently serves as the director of this department.  Her well-rounded skills make her an excellent educator in a variety of different areas.  She is a graduate of Rochester Institute of Technology where she holds a degree in Hotel and Resort Management.  She has been a key advocate of the resort’s operating philosophy and has developed an outstanding human resources program, which in part helped to recruit and develop an outstanding team. In 2007, Josette has the assumed the role of the resort’s Director of Training to lead the Academy.

James Hackney, Professor – Chef Hackney comes to the resort having most recently served as Executive Chef at Boston’s legendary L’Espalier, the highest rated restaurant in the city.  Originally haining from Leicestershire, England, Hackney was inspired to begin a career in the culinary world by working in his parents’ Garden Hotel, a quaint inn residing in the English countryside.  Chef hackney has also worked at such distinguished establishments as Blantyre, a Relais & Chateaux property in Lenox, Massachusetts, Charlie Palmer’s Aquaterra in Palm Beach, Florida and La Veille Maison in Boca Raton, Florida.

René Votteler, Professor – As the General Manager of Twenty-Eight Atlantic, René has produced amazing results since he joined Wequassett Inn in 1998.  His shrewd fiscal skills complemented by his modest leadership style are the foundation for his success.  René successfully opened Twenty-Eight Atlantic, which rapidly became one of the Cape’s finest restaurants.  He more than doubled the aggregate food and beverage revenues during his tenure with the resort.  His extensive wine knowledge is clearly an asset and both a personal and professional passion.  Earlier in his career, René gained valuable training while working a variety of management posts for Swissôtel Boston.   René is a graduate of the Lausanne Hotel Management School in Switzerland.

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