Chautauqua Institution

  • Wedding & Event Specialist

    Posted Date 2 weeks ago(2 weeks ago)
    # of Openings
  • Overview

    Chautauqua Institution is a ‘not-for-profit’ global conveyer of dialogue and debate on the most significant issues of the day through engagement across four pillars of arts, education, religion and recreation.  The Chautauqua Community is located on the shores of Chautauqua Lake in Southwestern New York State and comes alive each summer with a unique mix of fine/performing arts, lectures, interfaith worship/programs, and recreational activities.


    I. Position Summary

    The Wedding & Events Specialist is responsible for promotion of special events (especially weddings) to generate business, increase sales and drive revenue.  The incumbent will consult with wedding clients to provide detailed event planning support and function as a working leader during event execution at Athenaeum Hotel at Chautauqua Institution.  This key position requires a highly visible commitment to a ‘chain of excellence’ guest service strategy key to fulfilling collaborative mission at the Hotel and Institution. 



    • Collaborate with the Hotel General Manager, Director of Special Events and Special Events Administrator to solicit business and exceed individual/team sales goals based on assigned market.  
    • Solicit, negotiate and contract business through various efforts including: business visits, cold calls, expos/trade shows, prospecting, site tours, sales blitzes, prompt and competent follow-up on leads/referrals.  Use customer relationship management and networking skills to maximize revenue.
    • Develop and continually enhance relationships with key accounts, community organizations and professional associations to maintain visibility and increase market share.
    • Successfully and consistently achieve minimum weekly sales activities requirements.  Track all weekly sales activities and report results on goal to status as required.
    • Collaborate with Director of Special Events, Special Events Administrator and support staff such as Executive Chef/Culinary Team, Front Desk Staff and Maintenance to coordinate meetings with potential clients, host facility tours and conduct detailed consultations for weddings.    
    • Provide detailed customization services and professional counsel to any client with special requests ensuring that those requests can be granted within confines of rules and regulations.
    • Maintain an expert working knowledge of the OPERA Sales and Catering Module within the Hotel’s Property Management System (PMS).
    • Use organizational skills and attention to detail to prepare Banquet Event Orders (BEO).
    • Attend BEO and Sales Meetings to collaborate with interworking staff to review event details and/or special requests and inspect event space to ensure fulfillment of customer requirements.
    • Develop strong working relationships with Hotel General Manager, Food & Beverage Director, Restaurant Management, Executive Chef and various other departments to coordinate events, share detailed information and ensure contract obligations/special guest requests are promptly fulfilled. 
    • Greet clients and guests at every event to ensure fulfillment of contractual obligations, flawless execution, answer questions and find immediate resolution to concerns.  Facilitate a team environment to deliver superior customer service and ensure complete guest satisfaction.
    • Monitor events activities to satisfaction of participants, adherence to resort policies/procedures and compliance with applicable laws.  Follow standard procedures to record feedback for constant improvement of consistency, quality, profit and guest service for special events.
    • Understand monetary costs associated with special events and works with the Director of Special events to ensure that cost controls are maintained.
    • Assist with the posting of event deposits/final payments insuring that timely communication occurs and monthly financial reporting is available for EVP/CFO, Director of Accounting, Assistant Controller and Cash Control Accountant.  Assist with review of outstanding accounts receivable each month.
    • Provide data and reports that inform annual budget development and forecast events/revenue.
    • Collaborate with Marketing Department to assist with promotion of weddings, special events and other programming related to the Athenaeum Hotel / Special Events.
    • Work with Food & Beverage Director and Special Events Administrator to coordinate required licensing requirements for special events to guarantee compliance with Athenaeum Hotel Liquor License and New York State Liquor Control Board.  
    • Provide input and assistance coordinating calendar/reservations for programming in Special Events.
    • Revise and distribute Reservations Calendar for Hotel/Institution and coordinate work orders for building maintenance, as required.


    III. Formal Education Requirements

    • Associates Degree in Hospitality/Hotel, Event Management, Communications or equivalent combination of education/experience.

    IV. Formal Experience Requirements

    • Minimum 3-years prior hospitality experience with in a client facing role required. 
    • Minimum 3-years progressive sales experience required.

    V. Skills and Abilities

    • Must possess excellent attention to detail in relation to job duties and responsibilities coupled with the ability to provide positive client service. 
    • Ability to navigate multiple high priority demands/frequent changes in a fast-paced work environment with a balanced level of patience.  
    • Proficiency in various computer applications, including: Property Management System, Catering/Sales Software (Opera)and advanced Microsoft Word, Excel, and Outlook.  

    VI. Working Conditions and Environmental Hazards

    • Periodic travel required (up to 25%; often in personal vehicle) to various industry conferences or events.  
    • Constant moving about multiple locations within function area, occasionally in inclement weather. 

    VII. Physical Requirements

    • Frequent handling of objects, reaching, maneuvering and continually positioning of oneself to perform assigned tasks.  Periodically lifts and carries materials or supplies up to 50lbs.  

    VIII. Contacts



    • Direct contact with Hotel General Manager, Director of Food & Beverage, Executive Chef, Restaurant Managers, Director of Special Events, Special Events Administrator, Marketing Department, Director of Human Resources, Director of Accounting and Accounting Team.
    • Interaction with year-round and seasonal employees of the Institution and Hotel.


    • Chautauqua Institution and Athenaeum Hotel Guests
    • Prospective clients associated with weddings and other special events
    • Vendors and suppliers as needed 

    IX. Supervision and Guidance

    • Supervision of seasonal events team during functions


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