Harry Javer is an entrepreneur and event producer, most well-known for being the founder of the hugely popular event The Lodging Conference. If you’re curious to learn more about who Javer is, how he got his start, and his background, we break it all down below.
Who Harry Javer Is
Javer is from Brooklyn, New York. Growing up, he played baseball in high school, and went on to study political science at Stony Brook University. It was there that he found his passion for event production. As a student, he got the opportunity to put on concerts and music programs for worldwide music legends like U2, James Taylor, Carlos Santana, and Peter Gabriel, among others.
How Harry Javer Got His Start
After discovering an interest in event production in college, Javer went on to work at The Learning Annex, which is the biggest seminar production company in North America, putting on over 6,000 workshops, seminars, expos, and other events each year. He started first as an Operations/Program Director, and worked his way up to National Program Director, where he worked closely with founder Bill Zanker, producing expos and seminars around the country with upwards of 40,000 attendees each weekend and working with a Who’s Who of movers, shakers, and thinkers including Sir Richard Branson, Al Gore, Tony Robbins, Donald Trump, George Foreman, Deepak Chopra, Kurt Vonnegut, Joe Montana, Magic Johnson, and thousands more.
The Beginnings of The Lodging Conference
While working at The Learning Annex, Javer decided he wanted to start his own conference. After thorough research, he landed on The Lodging Conference, and held the first annual event in September of 1995. His idea was to start an upscale conference for top hotel owners, executives, and professionals to attend, and since its start, the conference has brought together tens of thousands of attendees.
“We bring together the hotel industry’s most influential owners, operators, presidents, CEOs and dealmakers to strategize about development, finance, franchising, management, construction, design, and operations. More than just a conference, the entire event is a THINK TANK where everybody in attendance has the opportunity to join in the conversation, discuss issues, and solve problems,” Javer explains.
There are many features that define The Lodging Conference, but just a few of them include:
- The unique opportunity for collaboration
As Javer calls it, the entire conference is a “think tank,” meaning that attendees don’t just idly listen to speakers. Guests are invited and encouraged to join in on different conversations, interact with everyone at the event, and engage in brainstorming and problem solving sessions. In fact, “think tank” sessions are limited in size, so every attendee gets the opportunity to share their thoughts and be part of the conversation.
- Countless networking opportunities
The Lodging Conference is an immersive experience like no other event. On the agenda, you’ll see activities such as morning hikes, yoga sessions, golf and basketball tournaments, gourmet meals, cocktail parties, and more. Guests will have countless opportunities to get to know their peers in the industry, network with some of the biggest names in the hospitality field, and make new connections.
- The relaxed atmosphere
It’s a professional conference, but Harry Javer still wants attendees to feel like they’re able to relax and enjoy their time at the event. Along with the fun and relaxing activities on the schedule, guests also get to enjoy the luxury atmosphere (the conference is held at the upscale JW Marriott Desert Ridge Resort and Spa, in Phoenix, Arizona). And what’s more, the dress code is strictly “resort casual” – no suits and ties allowed. Javer explains his thinking behind the casual atmosphere, saying “When people are relaxed, they’re more open to making new contacts, and that leads to deal-making.”
Other Entrepreneurial Projects
In addition to founding and producing The Lodging Conference every year, Javer is also the founder and owner of The New York Speakers Bureau (also known as The Conference Bureau). The Conference Bureau has produced hundreds of events, seminars, conferences and speaker tours.