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Stevan Porter

PORTER Stevan Porter, President of the Americas for InterContinental Hotels Group, passed away at his home in La Canada, CA, on Thursday, August 7, 2008 following a struggle with cancer. Steve was a resident of Atlanta, GA, La Canada, CA, and Manhattan Beach, CA. He was 53. Steve was recognized for integrity, enthusiasm, and passion in all facets of his life, including his career in the hospitality industry. Over the course of 32 years, Steve worked for Stouffer Hotels as a management trainee, later as an executive for Promus Hotels and Hilton Hotels, and, in 2001, as chief operating officer for the Americas for InterContinental Hotels Group. In 2002, he assumed the role of President. Steve also was a member of InterContinental's Board of Directors. A leader both professionally and personally, Steve served as an industry expert and was active with several philanthropic organizations. His popularity and innovative thinking put him in demand to appear at events around the world; his genuine warmth and compassion cemented lasting friendships with all whom he touched. Steve was on the Board of Directors of the IAHI Owner's Association, was the immediate past chairman of the American Hotel & Lodging Association Government Affairs Committee, was on the Executive Committee of the World Travel and Tourism Council, and served as Executive-in-Residence at the University of Tennessee. He also was named vice chairman of the Travel Business Roundtable and, in 2006, was named chairman of the Discover America Partnership, an effort headed by some of America's foremost business leaders to strengthen the image of the United States across the globe. Additionally, Steve was active with UNICEF, the American Cancer Society, the American Heart Association, the United Way, and the Center for Elimination of Violence in the Family. In 2005, Steve was awarded the U.S. Fund for UNICEF Corporate Responsibility Award; in 2004, he received the B'nai B'rith Community Service Award; and, in 2003, he was presented with the prestigious Oglethorpe Sword on behalf of the British American Business Group. A native of Columbus, OH, Steve was a graduate of Miami University and obtained his Master of Business Administration from Xavier University. He was a lifetime alumni member of Miami University, belonged to Miami University's Red and White Club, was a member and past chairman of the Business Advisory Council for the Richard T. Farmer School of Business at Miami University, and held membership in the 1831 Society at Xavier University. Above all, Steve was devoted to his family. His memory will live on in his wife of 32 years, Francey. Steve and Francey met at Miami University in Oxford, OH, and were married one week after graduation. Together, they enjoyed raising two sons, Steve Jr. and Charlie. The family's love of their husband and father remains in Steve's absence. Steve was preceded in death by his mother Patricia Anspach Porter, and sister Sherry Feeser, both of whom died of cancer. He is survived by his father, Evart Dean Porter of FL; and his brother, Scott Porter of VA; as well as numerous aunts, uncles, and cousins. His mother and father-in-law, Eva and Walter Page of Columbus, OH; and daugher-in-law, Michelle Rakiec Porter, also grieve his passing. Steve inspired life and joy in family, friends, colleagues and strangers alike. He lived his life as a model for all, and it is under the light of his beaming smile that all those whose lives he improved send him off to a better place: "Congratulations! Today is your day. You're off to Great Places! You're off and away!" (Oh, The Places You'll Go, Dr. Seuss) A memorial service will be held at the Church of the Recessional, Forest Lawn in Glendale, CA, on Tuesday, August 12, 2008 at 2:30 p.m. In Steve's honor, his family requests donations be made to Miami University and the American Cancer Society. Sign the online guestbook at www.dispatch.com/obituaries
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