While women have an out- sized representation in the hospitality industry—
especially in the role of meeting
planners—the number of females
in upper management and c-suite
roles continues to lag behind
those of men.
Charlotte St. Martin, president
of The Broadway League, is a
hotel, CVB and meetings industry
veteran who took a hammer to
the glass ceiling years ago.
“I thought it was absolutely ap-
palling that women weren’t able
to crack the glass ceiling in many
corporate offices across the coun-
try,” St. Martin said. “When I was
entering my career there weren’t
many women in leading roles.”
Before taking her current role
in 2006 as president of The Broad-
way League, a trade association
representing commercial theater
in the U.S. and the co-producer
of the Tony Awards, St. Martin
was active in MPI for nearly 30
years, having chaired the MPI
and serving n
said she was
move to Dallas
when she was
at the Fairmont
Dallas when it
was under construction.
St. Martin was the first hire of
the Loews Anatole Hotel, which
lead to a three-decade-long career with Loews Hotels, where she
held positions that included executive vice president of operations
and marketing and president and
CEO of the Loews Anatole Hotel.
Women Are Ideal Leaders
While women are still underrepresented in hospitality industry leadership roles, St. Martin believes it
is an ideal career for them.
“The hospitality industry in
general is very good for women
because they’re very flexible,
and if you’re not flexible in the
hospitality business you belong in
another business,” she said.
Women, of course, often struggle to balance career and family
life, but the steel-willed St. Martin
believes that if they prioritize
and have the drive required to
advance, they will find success.
“Everyone has to make accom-
roles,” she said.
“I live in New
York City, where
more women in
in the country.
They find ways
to do it. I did a
lot of speaking
when I was in
I said we can’t
give that excuse. If you feel you
can’t manage both, then wait until
you can until you go for that big job.
You have to find the ways to accom-
modate the jobs that you want.”
Unapologetic about the necessity
to focus sharply on career life, St.
Martin has always volunteered for
boards as a path to advancement.
“I’ve been on a board, served
as a leader or chaired a job in
an association every year since I
was 23,” she said. “Do things that
you’re not being paid to do and
volunteer for things that will help
you grow and expand your knowl-
edge base so you can get that job
you want. And if your organization
doesn’t support that, you leave!”
As an example, St. Martin said
she was told early in her career
that she would never be a general
manager at a hotel company, so
she left and joined Loews Hotels,
where she rose to the position of
CEO of the Anatole.
Bringing It to Broadway
St. Martin finally left the hospitality industry because of the travel
demands of the career, finding a
home in the association world at
The Broadway League, which has
members in 140 U.S. cities and
represents more than 260 venues.
One of its primary duties includes
negotiating all of the union contracts for New York City theaters,
as well as handling traditional
“It just looks a little different
because it’s Broadway and we’re
dealing with high-profile shows
and people, but it’s the same old
hard work, by the way,” St. Martin
said of the work of the association.
“It’s very entrepreneurial. I love the
corporate world. I always have. I’m
fortunate to have had the oppor-
tunity to know these incredible
people who make magic every day.”
“I do think meetings tend to be
very boring,” she said. “The more
people can incorporate entertain-
ment in education and confer-
ences, the better off the meetings
industry is going to be. It needs to
happen. Don’t be afraid of it.”
CHARLOTTE ST. MARTIN // PRESIDENT
THE BROADWAY LEAGUE
MORE MOVERS & SHAKERS // WWW.MEETINGSTODAY.COM/MOVERS-SHAKERS
By Tyler Davidson
S? CONTACT KATE.CRIPE@MEETINGSTODAY.COM