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Sig Front

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Sig S. Front, Jr.

Sig S. Front, Jr., who helped establish Las Vegas, Nev., as a year-round tourist destination and was instrumental in the expansion of one of the largest hotel chains in the world, died on February 23, 2013 in Naples, Fla. He was 84 years of age.Mr. Front was born in Wheeling, W.V., graduated from Linsly Military Institute, and attended West Virginia University where he studied Journalism. Mr. Front was proud to be a Master Mason with the Ohio Lodge No. 1 of Wheeling, W.V., for 50 years.

PFC Mr. Front served in the Korean War where he worked in the Psychological Warfare unit. Mr. Front helped create a radio station in Seoul that broadcast to the Chinese and North Korean armies and to the people of North Korea. Mr. Front worked as a reporter and did weekly broadcasts for the Voice of America.

After being discharged from the Army, Mr. Front worked as a staff radio and television announcer in Zanesville, Ohio and later at WQAM in Miami, Fla., in Sales. In 1956, Mr. Front was recruited by Schine Hotels to be part of their new sales team. Mr. Front was recruited in 1958 to work for Rogers & Cowen Public Relations in Beverly Hills, Calif. After handling the Swig Hotel account, Mr. Front became the Director of Sales and Advertising for the Beverly Wilshire Hotel. Two years later, Mr. Front became the Director of Sales and Advertising for the Fred Harvey Corporation in Los Angeles, Calif. In 1962, Mr. Front was hired by the Del Webb Corporation as their Director of Sales and was later appointed Vice President of Sales and Marketing for Webb Hotels International, the leading revenue chain in the hotel industry at the time.

Mr. Front joined The Sheraton Corporation in 1975 in Europe, where he was to head hotel operations but was instead assigned to Sheraton's headquarter staff in Boston, Mass., later that year to become the Senior Vice President, Sales, Marketing and Advertising for the corporation, worldwide. He became one of Sheraton's top executives in building business worldwide, remaining in that position for over ten years.

While in Boston, Mr. Front served on the Board of The Genesis Fund, the Board of Trustees of the Boston Ballet, the Board of MS of Massachusetts, and the Board of Neurofibromatosis Fund of Boston.

Mr. Front was active in many hotel associations and was elected President of the Hospitality Sales and Marketing Association in 1973. He presided over its first convention abroad in Dublin, Ireland and, as President of HSMAI, Mr. Front helped expand the Association by encouraging women to enter the industry.

In recent years, Mr. Front served as a Board member and consultant to Guest Services, Inc. of Fairfax, Va. Additionally, Mr. Front contributed to the development of the Resort and Hospitality Management Program at Florida Gulf Coast University in Ft. Myers, Fla.

Mr. Front was recognized as a leader in the travel industry. His hotel career spanned six decades, with management responsibilities involving hotels and resorts throughout the U.S. and 64 countries.

Mr. Front is survived by his wife of 46 years, Toni; a daughter, Melissa, his son-in-law, Derek, of McLean, Va.; and a son, Jonathan, his daughter-in-law, Heather of Naples, Fla.; four grandchildren, Hallie and Lauren of McLean, Va., and Jonathan, Jr. and Samantha of Naples, Fla.

Contributions in memory of Mr. Front may be made to Hevreh of Southern Berkshire or Volunteers in Medicine (VIM) Berkshires.
Published in The Berkshire Eagle on Mar. 1, 2013
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