It takes a lot of hard work and sacrifice to keep any institution going for 250 years. The Omni Homestead is a testament to perseverance. The Homestead survived the Civil War, a fire that destroyed the original structure, and countless economic collapses. I'm a product of the hospitality industry. My parents, like the generations before them, made great sacrifices during their careers at the Homestead to give me and my siblings the opportunities we had growing up. My first job was at the Homestead: I was a busboy/waiter. I know how tough the hospitality industry is. There are no easy paths to success. I'm deeply humbled to be part of this celebration. The magnitude of this event isn't lost on me. This is a homecoming -even though I live a mile from the resort. We've come a long way as a society in 250 years since the Homestead first opened Its doors. I thank everyone who made this possible, and I promise to honor your hard work with an afternoon worthy of your sacrifice and this historic platform.
I've tried to make this talk a little more interactive: I want a dialogue instead of a drawn out monologue. I look forward to a great afternoon.