Hotel Council of San Francisco Announces New Board Members: Franco Finn, Gail Isono, Sheena Way
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Hotel Council of San Francisco Announces New Board Members:
Franco Finn, Gail Isono, Sheena Way
19 October 2022— San Francisco, CA: The Hotel Council of San Francisco (www.hotelcouncilsf.org) today announced three new board members: Franco Finn (Alaska Airlines), Gail Isono (Harbor Court Hotel), Sheena Way (Golden State Warriors)
“These three new additions to our Board expand our reach and our expertise,” said Terry Lewis, Board Chair for the Council. “These professionals are well known in their respective fields and know how vital tourism is for our economic recovery.”
“I’m excited to announce our newest additions to the Hotel Council’s Board of Directors: Franco Finn, Gail Isono and Sheena Way,” said Alex Bastian, President & CEO of the Council. “This pivotal moment in our city’s history highlights the importance of creating partnerships that benefit our industry, its workforce, and the city of San Francisco. Our collaboration with our Allied Partners, the world champion Golden State Warriors and Alaska Airlines, is incredibly valuable because it is representative of San Francisco’s tourism industry. We will be working collectively to fast-track our city’s recovery by doubling down on tourism in 2023.”
The Hotel Council of San Francisco is a non-profit membership-based organization advocating for the economic and social vitality of the hospitality industry in San Francisco. With a membership roster of over 200 hotels, allied members, and partner organizations, the Council is dedicated to protecting the San Francisco hospitality industry and connecting its members to support its growth and success.
Franco Finn is a first-generation San Francisco native. Born and raised in the Mission & Excelsior districts in Francisco and eventually settled in the Sunset District. Franco attended French American International School (FAIS) in grade school, then Sacred Heart Cathedral Prep for High School, and then received his B.A. in Communications at Santa Clara University. For nearly a decade, Franco has been an aviation professional, working in many capacities within the airline industry from Brand Marketing, Communications, External Relations & Employee Engagement. Currently, Franco manages the Community Relations & Engagement for the state of California at Alaska Airlines.
Franco is an active member in the San Francisco community where he also serves on the Executive Board of the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce. When he’s not working his full time job, many people may also recognize him and his voice over the last 20 years as the in-arena MC/Host and TV Personality for the NBA World Champion Golden State Warriors. Now in his 20th season, many fans of the beloved sports franchise, fittingly know him as the “Hypeman” at the new Chase Center in San Francisco, where he energizes and entertains the sold out crowd of 18,000+ fans each and every night. You’ll hear him introducing the team’s starting lineup, hosting the pre-game show “Warriors TV” and conducting all the contests and promos at the arena.
Franco Finn is also a well-known professional auctioneer, the “Hypeman Auctioneer”, where he shares his voice and influence at many charity benefits, galas, and fundraiser events all around the San Francisco Bay Area & beyond. He’s a graduate of the Mendenhall School of Auctioneering in North Carolina, a member of the National Auctioneers Association (NAA) with a Benefit Auction Specialist (B.A.S.) designation. Franco has been involved in a multitude of fundraising events for many years, working with some of the most recognizable non-profit charities and organizations from the American Red Cross, March of Dimes, The Ronald McDonald House, the Boys & Girls Clubs, the YMCA, and the Make-A-Wish Foundation, just to name a handful, helping to raise millions of dollars and counting, in his career!
His media background and experience includes being a segment host on KRON 4 TV and freelancing as an MC/host for the San Francisco Giants’ special events for the past 13 seasons. He is a local and national MC, hosting a variety of sporting events from NASCAR to Red Bull’s extreme sports events. His previous stints include being an on-air personality and host for TV and Radio for CBS, Comcast SportsNet, the Oakland Raiders (NFL Network), KOFY-TV, Radio Disney, KGO AM 810, and guest appearances on ESPN Radio.
Gail Isono is the General Manager for the Harbor Court Hotel. Prior to joining the Harbor Court Hotel, Gail was the General Manager for the Hotel Abri, and previously, the Huntington Hotel & Nob Hill Spa for over 16 years, her pride in working in San Francisco has been a focal point in the guest and employee experience. She has been a member of the Hotel Council and was previously involved in the Union Square Business Improvement District, Nob Hill Association and Vistage. Gail attended the University of Hawaii, majoring in Travel industry Management and worked in the hotel industry i n Hawaii before moving to San Francisco. Her upbringing i n Hawaii has been a strong influence for the importance of “ohana” (family) that we share in our industry.
Sheena Way joined the Golden State Warriors organization during the 2020-21 NBA season as Vice President, Content and Programming, and is now in her second season. In her current role, Way’s primary responsibilities include oversight over Chase Center and Thrive City programming opportunities, as well as concerts, sporting events, premium live events, special events, and outdoor plaza activations. Way has focused on new ways to bring the different communities of the Bay Area together through unique specialty events such as Lunar New Year Celebration, Black History Month Celebrations, Women Small Business Market, and Hanukkah Celebrations. Under her direction, Chase Center and Thrive City have welcomed hundreds of thousands of guests for live entertainment of all kinds. When Chase Center reopened for fans coming out of the pandemic in 2021, she orchestrated the bookings of the rescheduled and new concerts and performances highlighted by Tame Impala, The Eagles, Dave Chappelle, Luke Combs, Metallica and back-to-back sold-out Trevor Noah shows. Prior to joining the Warriors, Way served as Vice President, Live Entertainment for the Oilers Entertainment Group (OEG), where she oversaw the bookings for Rogers Place—home to the NHL’s Edmonton Oilers—the Downtown Community Arena, ICE District, and all Premium rental spaces within OEG. There she managed the grand opening of Rogers Place, including the official ribbon-cutting ceremony and public house, along with 11 shows in its first 60 days. Way’s experience expands over 25 years in Talent Management and Live Entertainment Programming; previously she served as Director of Live Entertainment for Canucks Sports and Entertainment. She was responsible for all bookings at Rogers Arena, home to the NHL’s Vancouver Canucks. She spent additional time in the Vancouver market in positions with Live Nation Entertainment, House of Blue Concerts, and the Sam Feldman Agency. A native of Vancouver, Canada, Way spent her childhood in the British Columbia Province, where she started in the entertainment industry as an artist manager at 16 years old. In her free time, Sheena is an avid skier and cyclist and enjoys Bay area adventures with her husband, Mike.