Skip Stearns
P.O. Box 113
Stratham, NH 03885-0113
Tel. (603) 778-0110
Fax. (603) 778-0333

Areas of Expertise

Skip Stearns along with highly specialized hospitality associates at THE HOTEL EXPERTS, LLC (THE), offer experience as attorney case consultants and in providing unbiased expert testimony. In guiding counsel through discovery, depositions and case strategy, submitting detailed opinions, and offering unbiased deposition and trial testimony both for and against hotel properties, owners, operators, franchisors and individual litigants, THE has successfully served the plaintiffs and defendants of, among others:

Allyn, Hausner & Montanile Valley Cottage, NY
The Law Firm of Peter G. Angelos Baltimore, MD
Barry, Corrado, Grassi & Gibson Wildwood, NJ
Borkon, Ramstead, Mariani, Fishman & Carp Minneapolis, MN
Borofsky, Amodeo-Vickery & Bandazian Manchester, NH
Boswell Law Firm Bryant, AR
The Branch Law Firm Albuquerque, NM
Brennan Holden & Kavouklis Winter Haven, FL
Broadfoot & Associates Burlington, VT
Law Offices of Salvador M. Brocato, III Metairie, LA
Law Firm of R. Kent Brown Charlotte, NC
Cadeaux & Taglieri Washington, DC
Carmichael Law Firm Jasper, AL
Cassiday & Schade Chicago, IL
Morris B. Chapman & Associates Granite City, IL
The Cincinnati Insurance Companies Indianapolis, IN
The Cochran Law Firm New Orleans, LA
Conroy, Simberg, Ganon, Krevans & Abel Orlando, FL
Cook, Kotel & Fitch Denver, CO
Coolidge, Mathieu, Barrington & Couture Somersworth, NH
Daniels Kashtan Downs Robertson & Magathan Coral Gables, FL
Devereaux, Stokes, Nolan, Fernandez & Leonard St. Louis, MO
DeZao & DiBrigida Parsippany, NJ
Dixon, Truman, Fisher & Clifford St. George, UT
Duffy + Partners Philadelphia, PA
Law Office of James W. Dodson Clearwater, FL
Epstein, Becker, Green, Wickliffe & Hall Houston, TX
Flynn & Associates Quincy, MA
The Law Firm of Michael Frazelle Phoenix, AZ
Freishtat, Burke, Mullen & Dubnow Baltimore, MD
The Law Firm of Arthur C. Fulmer Lakeland, FL
Gohlson, Hicks & Nichols Columbus, MS
The Gold Law Firm Greenwood Village, CO
Goodin, MacBride, Squeri, Day & Lamprey San Francisco, CA
Goodrich and Associates Pittsburgh, PA
Gordon, Silberman, Wiggins & Childs Birmingham, AL
Gruel Mills Nims & Pylman Grand Rapids, MI
Hale and Dorr Boston, MA
Hall Jaffe & Clayton Las Vegas, NV
The Law Firm of Donald L. Harvey Houston, TX
Higgins, Himmelberg & Piliponis Nashville, TN
The Law Firm of Joseph J. Hochbein Cincinnati, OH
Howell, O’Neal & Johnson Jacksonville, FL
Hunter, Cole & Bennett Christiansted, USVI
Jardine, Baker, Hickman, Houston Phoenix, AZ
Robert John & Associates Evansville, IN
Jolly & Peterson Tallahassee, FL
The Joye Law Firm North Charleston, SC
Kern and Wooley Irving, TX
Kilpatrick Stockton Augusta, GA
Kinney & Lange Minneapolis, MN
Daniel E. Lynch & Associates Richmond, VA
Law Office of Sidney H. Kirstein Lynchburg, VA
Koonz, McKinney, Johnson, DePaolis & Lightfoot Washington, DC
Kutak Rock Irvine, CA
Langston & Lott Boonesville, MS
LeBoeuf, Lamb, Green & MacRae Boston, MA
Leighton Law Miami, FL
Lenahan & Dempsey Scranton, PA
Leventhal, Brown & Puga Denver, CO
Law Office of John Lewis Dallas, TX
Lind, Jensen, Sullivan & Peterson Minneapolis, MN
Lynch, Karcich & Yellin Voorhees, NJ
McCann, Schaible & Wall Philadelphia, PA
McDowell & Osburn Manchester, NH
Patrick S. McElhone Louisville, KY
McGartland & Borchardt Fort Worth, TX
The Law Firm of Michael McGown Beaumont, TX
Meagher & Geer Scottsdale, AZ
Law Offices of Wanda I. Medina de Soler San Juan, PR
Metier Law Firm Fort Collins, CO
Miller & Hauptman Feasterville, PA
Musi, Malone & Daubenberger Media, PA
Neiser & Neiser St. Petersburg, FL
Nixon, Raiche, Manning, Casinghino & Leach Manchester, NH
Norton Rose Canada Calgary, Alberta
The Law Firm of Philip P. O’Shaughnessey Baltimore, MD
Parsons, Powell & Lane Westfield, NJ
Pitzer Snodgrass St. Louis, MO
Poore, Roth & Robinson Butte, MT
Jeffrey S. Pop & Associates Beverly Hills, CA
Pope & Howard Atlanta, GA
Prince & Glick Fort Lauderdale, FL
Rasmussen & Mitchell Omaha, NE
Redwine Law Offices Dallas, TX
Richardson, Stoops, Richardson & Ward Tulsa, OK
The Romano Law Group West Palm Beach, FL
The Law Firm of Douglas Rozelle Palm Beach, FL
Rouson & Brumley St. Petersburg, FL
Schuetze, Gordon & Dubofsky Boulder, CO
Scibelli and Whiteley Boston, MA
Sellers, Hinshaw, Ayres, Dortch & Lyon Charlotte, NC
Sherin & Lodgen Boston, MA
Shuffield Lowman Orlando, FL
Snapka, Turman & Waterhouse Corpus Christi, TX
Spector Gadon & Rosen Philadelphia, PA
The Stiell Law Firm Tallahassee, FL
Swartz Campbell Philadelphia, PA
Swenson, Storer, Andrews, Frazelle & Sayre Phoenix, AZ
Law Firm of William H. Twichell Pinedale, WY
Ungerman Hill Dallas, TX
James S. Usich, P.A. Palmetto Bay, FL
The VanSteenburg Law Firm Scottsbluff, NE
Venable , LLP Baltimore, MD
Webb, Sanders & Williams Tupelo, MS
Wicker, Smith, O’Hara, McCoy, Graham & Ford West Palm Beach, FL
Wilson, Elser, Moskowitz, Edelman & Dicker Philadelphia, PA
Winston Grays & Associates Cleveland, OH
Zbinden & Curtis Portland, OR

THE HOTEL EXPERTS, LLC has an extensive background in on-property and corporate hotel management. Additionally, THE’s expertise may be applicable to franchising, hotels, motels, the cruise industry, casinos and other gaming operations, restaurants, bars and recreation industries. Cases in which THE has contributed include contractual disputes, wrongful deaths, premises liability, slip, trip and fall incidents, scalding and other personal injuries. Specific areas of expertise include:

  • Hotel Industry Operating Standards
  • Product Standards
  • Safety & Security Standards
  • Emergency Procedures
  • Employee Qualifications, Hiring & Termination Practices
  • Standards for Training
  • Marketing Practices
  • Franchise Agreements & Management Contracts
  • Franchise Relations
  • Restaurant, Food & Beverage Standards
  • Alcohol Service
  • Accounting
  • Taxation
  • Valuation
  • Hotel Industry Operating Standards
    Skip Stearns, and associates John Hogan, Linda Libby and Rob McIntosh all have considerable corporate and field unit experience in hotel operations. As vice presidents and directors of franchising for Omni Hotels, Skip and Rob supervised the development of the company-wide operating manual, trained hotel owners, general managers and other management executives in its contents and supervised execution of standard operating procedures in all licensed hotels. Before and after his role as a corporate executive, Rob served as managing director of landmark full-service hotels in Boston, Washington, DC and Lake George, NY. As vice president of rooms operations at Omni Hotels, Linda participated in standards development and in the training of owners, general managers and other management level personnel new to the company. In addition to serving as general manager and other key positions in the field, Linda enjoyed ongoing company-wide supervision of the rooms division, including front office, manager on duty, bell staff, door personnel, housekeeping, maintenance and security, during her time as corporate vice president. John trained in the rooms division covering these same hotel operating departments. He grew to become a hotel general manager in an all suites hotel in Nashville, a second full-service hotel in Nashville and a full-service property in Raleigh. John has enjoyed multi-property management supervisory responsibilities as a corporate employee and as a consultant. He has trained hundreds of hospitality school students as an adjunct professor from 1991-2000, hundreds more as corporate director of training and cultural diversity for Best Western over eight years, and John is one of the most widely published experts in hotel industry trade publications. For the last ten years, John has and continues to be active as an advisor and committeeman with the American Hotel & Lodging Association in areas concerning the education and training of hotel owners and operators.

  • Hotel Industry Product Standards
    The significant field and corporate hotel management experience of John Hogan, Linda Libby and Rob McIntosh described in the above paragraph translates into considerable hotel product knowledge. In addition to the knowledge they derived from various on-site hotel management assignments and corporate executive positions, each maintained active roles in national and local hospitality communities thus affording broader knowledge and experience of competitive product standards. Skip Stearns also maintains product survey experience in his current consulting practice, and has previously served as the exclusive provider of product and service inspections for the Bahamian government. Skip, as VP, Director of Franchising at Omni Hotels, participated in establishing company-wide product standards, trained all management levels in these standards and was charged with overseeing their enforcement throughout the franchise division.

  • Hotel Industry Safety & Security Standards
    In John Hogan, Linda Libby and Rob McIntosh’s field experience, they directly supervised all safety and security functions across all hotel operating departments. In addition to overseeing dedicated security departments in complex full service facilities, their roles included assuring knowledge and training of safety and security practices for manager’s on duty, front desk, housekeeping, engineering, food service, beverage service, kitchen, swimming pools, sports & recreation and other areas of guest and employee activities. Skip Stearns, Linda and Rob, in supervising the development of hotel and corporate standards operating manuals, also drafted and approved standard procedures to assure customer and employee safety. Skip continues to evaluate life safety and security practices in his current consulting role. Litigation consulting experience in over 100 cases since 2002 has also provided Skip and THE associates with invaluable insights into a range of personal injuries, wrongful deaths and other complaints related to guest and employee safety and security.

  • Hotel Industry Emergency Procedures
    Paramount among safety & security standards are emergency procedures surrounding the duty to protect guests and employees during a crisis. Emergency procedures may relate to weather events such as snow storms or hurricanes, blackouts, fire, evacuations, illness or injury, and response to criminal acts among other things. John Hogan, Linda Libby and Rob McIntosh, as on-site hotel general managers and managing directors oversaw the establishment of such procedures, the training, the drilling and the execution of such procedures. Henry Tebbe, as a hotel director of human resources and an executive committee member, has intimate knowledge and supervisory experience concerning emergency procedures, and has been an active trainer in the behavioral responses to various emergencies.

  • Hotel Industry Employee Qualifications, Hiring & Termination Practices
    All associates of THE HOTEL EXPERTS, LLC have significant experience throughout their lengthy hotel careers setting qualifications for a broad range of positions, directly and indirectly hiring at the unit and corporate levels and terminating hotel and hospitality employees. Amongst our associates, Henry Tebbe is the one whose hotel career has been dedicated to the critical function of human resources. For over 20 years as a field and corporate management executive, Henry has been focused on recruitment in the hospitality industry, matching the right employee with effective position descriptions, reference and background checking, competitive hiring practices, employee counseling and effective termination procedures.

  • Hotel Industry Standards for Training
    Skip Stearns trained and supervised corporate training for all management level executives at Omni Hotels from 1988 to 1996. Rob McIntosh and Linda Libby similarly participated in such training for hotel owners and management personnel new to Omni Hotels. As hotel industry consultants, Skip and Linda continue to train employees to establish and attain objectives with respect to customers and owners, and train owners to serve the needs of their employees. Various associates of THE HOTEL EXPERTS, LLC have distinguished themselves with academic and industry certifications while creating, training, applying and supervising hospitality standards. John Hogan and Henry Tebbe are the two associates whose careers have been most linked to the development and training of hotel industry standards. In addition to his experience and titled roles in the industry, John has meaningful experience as an adjunct professor in the academic community, and he has been a leading contributor to curriculum and as an advisor to the American Hotel & Lodging Association’s Educational Institute. He is a training consultant, frequent guest speaker and seminar leader, among the most published contributors in industry trade publications, and the co-founder of Henry is a human resources specialist. Each step of his impressive career has included a focus on training and development dealing from unit line staff up to executive management, company-wide positions and corporate responsibilities. In his current consulting practice, Henry offers line and management training to complement his human resources abilities.

  • Hotel Industry Marketing Practices
    Skip Stearns spent the first 13 years of his hotel career directly in sales & marketing field and corporate roles for Dunfey, then Omni Hotels. As vice president, director of national sales for four years, he led the reorganization of Omni’s national sales offices, drafted company-wide sales contracts and introduced remote booking capability to the hotel industry. As a consultant, Skip remains actively involved in the analysis of hotel and corporate sales & marketing organizations and practices and in problem solving for increased revenues. John Hogan, Linda Libby and Rob McIntosh have extensive experience supervising the hotel sales & marketing function. While John’s upbringing was on the rooms operations side of the business, his keen interest in sales & marketing has paved the way for him to serve as a frequent keynote and seminar speaker in sales & marketing. John has also designed sales & marketing materials for the American Hotel & Lodging Association’s Educational Institute, and he is a frequently published author of sales & marketing articles in the hotel industry’s most well-read trades.

  • Franchise Agreements & Management Contracts
    As vice president, director of franchising for Omni Hotels, Skip Stearns has participated in the drafting of Uniform Franchise Offering Circulars, negotiated terms, authored and served as signatory on license agreements. Rob McIntosh has similarly led Omni Hotels Franchising Corporation and served as the company’s principal liaison for its franchisees. Skip and Rob maintained responsibility for licensor adherence to contract terms and standards of operation and product contained therein. Skip has reviewed and contributed to the development of management agreements. Rob has vastly more experience managing under a management contract as well as supervising performance of contracts for Omni Hotels as a third-party manager. John Hogan and Linda Libby contribute experience as general managers for full service properties that were under management agreements.

  • Franchise Relations
    Skip Stearns served in the two most senior franchising positions for Omni Hotels from 1987-1996. He has since consulted to franchisees in his consulting practice. Rob McIntosh also led Omni Hotels Franchising Corporation as a senior vice president. John Hogan served as a senior executive in the area of training and cultural diversity with Best Western for eight years. While Best Western distinguishes itself as a “membership brand” versus a franchisor, day to day operations between the corporate entity and its members very much resemble the important relationship between franchisor and franchisee.

  • Restaurant, Food & Beverage Standards
    Skip Stearns has knowledge in these areas as a drafter and overseer of hotel food and beverage operating standards, while associates John Hogan and Rob McIntosh have had direct supervisory experience over the food & beverage function during their experiences as general managers and managing directors of hotels and in their corporate multi-property responsibilities. Linda Libby is considered to be THE’s most knowledgeable associate in the various areas relating to food & beverage: restaurants, bar operations, room service, catering and special events. Like John and Rob, Linda has supervised the food & beverage function in the field at multiple hotel general manager roles. More recent years have distinguished Linda specifically in the discipline by virtue of her seven years as managing partner of a Charlotte-based event planning company, and in a current consulting role where she serves in the role as general manager of four distinct food & beverage outlets under one roof.

  • Alcohol Service
    Associates of THE HOTEL EXPERTS, LLC have specialized experience supervising and training in the service of alcoholic beverages. Familiarity with dram shop practices and certified trainers of recommended alcohol service programs offer credible direction and testimony. Henry Tebbe has previously been certified as a master trainer in TIPS, and he maintains current alcohol server certification. Linda Libby’s general manager role at Portsmouth Gas Light Company, where there are four distinct food & beverage operations under one roof, has assured her intimate knowledge and supervision of all issues concerning alcoholic beverage inventory and distribution practices.

  • Accounting
    Michael Losapio is a New Hampshire CPA leading his own accounting practice for over ten years. A significant portion of the firm’s focus is New England area hotel properties, many with significant food & beverage operations. Mike’s practice represents over 50 hotel and hospitality clients. Previously, Mike spent four years at the corporate offices of Omni Hotels where he was a key corporate manager in the finance department. Linda Libby spent a meaningful part of her early hotel career in financial services in the field and leading special corporate projects for Omni Hotels. As general managers and managing directors, Linda is joined by John Hogan and Rob McIntosh as THE associates who have gathered significant experience in hotel accounting and finance.

  • Taxation
    The year following Michael Losapio’s Certified Public Accountant designation, he earned a Master of Science in Taxation. In nearly all subsequent career stops spanning more than 25 years, Mike has been hired for and/or applied his skills and particular interest in field taxation.

  • Valuation
    Michael Losapio has been accredited by the National Association of Certified Valuation Analysts as a Certified Valuation Analyst (CVA) and by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants in Business Valuation (ABV). Even preceding these achievements, Mike was active with Omni Hotels in both internal and external valuations and appraisals. The firm Mike presently owns for over ten years has made valuations and appraisals an integral part of the service package it offers to it offers to its more than 50 hotel and hospitality clients.

    THE HOTEL EXPERTS, LLC’s experience and knowledge base is not limited to its principal and single member, Skip Stearns. THE has a library of operating standards from various hospitality companies and textbooks used in the teaching of university level students enrolled in hotel and hospitality-related business programs. Further, THE subscribes to the most widely-read industry trade publications and is well-versed in expeditiously identifying and conducting relevant internet research.

    THE frequently enlists the services of associates who are non-employee experts. The CVs of John Hogan, Linda Libby, Michael Losapio, Rob McIntosh and Henry Tebbe appear on our website under the “Expert CVs” link. These associates expand THE’s geographic accessibility. More importantly, they broaden the expertise available at THE versus the more typical sole proprietor serving in the capacity of a hotel or hospitality expert. The field of hotel & hospitality experts is extremely narrow. By offering more than one such expert, THE HOTEL EXPERTS, LLC represents an efficient means to shop for the competitive edge. THE endeavors to assure that attorney clients are matched with the expert most appropriate to the litigation consulting needs and unbiased opinions and testimony specific to each plaintiff’s or defendant’s case needs. Integrity is unshakeable at THE HOTEL EXPERTS, LLC. As consultants, THE is prepared to advocate for all clients. As report writers and testifying experts, THE will, at all times, require exposure to all relevant materials and evidence. Opinions and all forms of testimony shall be impartially delivered.

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