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Eric Bates named GM at Wingspread Retreat & Executive Conference Center

Eric BatesBENCHMARK formally announces the appointment of Eric Bates as general manager for Wingspread Retreat & Executive Conference Center, a Benchmark Resorts & Hotels conference center hotel located in Racine, Wisconsin. Ellen Sinclair, Benchmark’s senior vice president, operations, made the announcement.
 
“It is a real pleasure to formally announce Eric’s newest position within our company,” said Ms. Sinclair. “He is a proven leader and actively embraces Benchmark’s Be The Difference service culture. He is also a native of Wisconsin and personally understands Wingspread’s culture and Racine’s destination experience.”
 
Eric Bates previously held the position of general manager for Eaglewood Resort & Spa, a Benchmark resort located in the Chicago suburb of Itasca, Illinois.
 
Over his distinguished career, Mr. Bates has held a number of leadership positions for independent and branded resorts, and major hotel brands such as Hilton, InterContinental Hotels, the Stouffer Hotel Company, and Marriott International. He began his career in hospitality at age 15, working in hotels owned by family and friends.
 
Eric Bates is a graduate of the culinary arts program at Joliet Junior College where he earned an associate’s degree. He received his bachelor’s degree in hospitality and restaurant management from the University of Wisconsin-Stout, graduating Cum Laude. A two-time recipient of Regional Hotelier of the Year honors from the Illinois Hotel and Lodging Association, Mr. Bates is an active community member serving most recently on the Board of Directors for the Chicago Northwest and Lake County Convention and Visitors Bureaus, and on the Executive Board of the Illinois Hotel and Lodging Association.  Former board appointments include the Milwaukee Hotel and Lodging Association, the Chicago North Shore Convention and Visitors Bureau, the Skokie Chamber of Commerce and the Marriott Business Council.  He resides in Mount Pleasant, Wisconsin, with his family.
 
About Wingspread Retreat & Executive Conference Center
Wingspread Retreat & Executive Conference Center is located 30 miles from Milwaukee and 90 miles from Chicago in Racine, Wisconsin. Existing for decades as a private conference center and home to The Johnson Foundation, Wingspread opened its doors to public meeting use in 2018. This Frank Lloyd Wright-designed property boasts over 15,000 sq. ft. of event space with floor to ceiling windows, a recently renovated LEED certified 40 room guest house, environmentally friendly amenities, and an award-winning culinary team dedicated to meeting. www.wingspread.com/
 
About The Johnson Foundation at Wingspread
The Johnson Foundation at Wingspread is dedicated to serving as a catalyst for change by bringing together leading thinkers and inspiring new solutions on important issues affecting future quality of life. For additional information or to learn more about The Johnson Foundation at Wingspread, please visit www.johnsonfdn.org.
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