Gary Mendell HEI

Gary Mendell

Chairman & Co-founder


Gary co-founded HEI in 1985, which became one of the fastest-growing hotel investment firms in the United States. In 1997 he sold a majority of the company to Starwood Lodging Trust where he was named president and elected to the board of trustees. During his tenure, Starwood acquired the Westin hotel chain for approximately $1.8 billion and ITT Corporation for approximately $14 billion. Gary resigned his position in 1998 to pursue entrepreneurial activities that led to re-establishing HEI in 2002. In 2004, Gary led fundraising efforts for HEI’s first $275 million discretionary private equity fund, followed by HEI’s second fund with $425 million equity capitalization in 2006 and HEI’s third fund with $515 million in 2008. Gary is also the founder and Chairman of Shatterproof, a national charitable organization committed to protecting our loved ones from addiction to illicit and prescription drugs, and alcohol, and ending the stigma and suffering of those affected by this disease.


MBA with distinction, the Wharton School at University of Pennsylvania BS, Cornell University School of Hotel Administration

Clinton Global Initiative, UJA-Federation Campaign Steering Committee, Industry Real Estate FinancenAdvisory Council, The Real Estate Roundtable, the Cornell Society of Hotelmen, Charter Member of President Obama’s Better Building Challenge, MINA (Marriott International’s North America Association).


Leadership, UJA Federation of New York, Hospitality Division; Cornell University of Hotel Administration Hospitality Innovator Award; Starwood's Hotels & Resorts 2010 President's Award

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