6th edition


First place: Elena VÁZQUEZ

Elena VÁZQUEZ, from the Centro Superior de Hosteleria of Galicia in Spain, is a future graduate of a master’s degree. Elena joined the hospitality industry directly after her high school diploma.

Participating in this competition makes her  » very happy to live an experience extremely enriching and to take up a huge challenge ». Most of all it represents « a huge opportunity to know herself better and to exchange ideas with hospitality industry professionals and other student candidates ».

Elena has been awarded a trophy created by the French manufacter of fine crystal glassware, Baccarat, exclusively for this occasion.

She will be offered the chance to fly to Chicago, where the Hyatt Corporation Head Office is located and will receive accomodation in Park Hyatt Chicago, a trip realized in partnership with Air France.



Jury members

During the event, the students met with the members of the jury, a team consisting of renowned television personalities and top names in the entertainment business, the arts and literature. Chaired by Carlo d’Asaro Biondo, President of Operations for South & Eastern Europe, Middle East & Africa at Google, the judges panel will name 3 finalists before selecting the final winner.

Carlo d’Asaro Biondo

Carlo d’Asaro Biondo is President of Operations for South & Eastern Europe, Middle East & Africa at Google. He is this year’s President of the Jury.

Gerard Petit

Gerard Petit is VP Sales La Première – Commercial, Sales & Marketing Division. Some of his previous experiences in management include Regional Director Southwest France and Regional Delegate for Southern Cone (Argentina, Chili, Uruguay, Paraguay and Bolivia).

Michel Adé

Michel Adé is Managing Director of Montblanc France. Montblanc is one of the most prominent international brands for luxury goods; distinguished for its quality writing instruments, watches, jewellery and leather goods.

Iris Knobloch

Iris Knobloch was named President, Warner Bros. Entertainment France in 2006 after having spent more than 10 years at Warner Bros. as a member of WHV’s European management team and at Time Warner as SVP, International Relations and Strategic Policy, Europe. In her current role, Knobloch oversees all of WB’s businesses in France, including theatrical production and distribution, television distribution, home video, consumer products, online and emerging distribution technologies. Knobloch is trilingual in English, German and French. She received a J.D degree from Ludwig-Maximilians-Universitaet in Germany in 1987 and an L.L.M degree from New York University in 1992. She currently serves as a member of the Board of Accor.

Thomas Kunz

Thomas Kunz has many years of experience in the international industry. He is responsible for the Dairy Division of Danone world-wide and is a memeber of the Danone Executive Committee.

Marie-Laure Sauty de Chalon

Marie-Laure Sauty de Chalon is the CEO of the aufeminin.com. She began her career in 1985 working for print media and TV (Libération, Le Nouvel Observateur, La Tribune, France Télévision Publicité). She first joined the Carat group in 1997 as General Director of Carat Prospective and of Carat Interactive. In 2002, she moved to New York where she held the function of CEO at Consodata North America. Back in France, she returned to Carat in 2004 as CEO of Aegis Media France and, later, Aegis Media Southern Europe (Aegis Media is the European leader for media counselling). Since june 2010 Marie-Laure manages aufeminin.com group as CEO. She is a memeber of the « Observatoire de la Parité » organisation, which promotes gender equality, and she has been teaching « Changing Media » at Sciences Po for 7 years.

John Wallis

John Wallis, Chief Marketing Officer, since 2012, previously served as Global Head of Marketing and Brand Strategy since November 2008. Mr. Wallis’ career with Hyatt began in 1981. Prior to his current role, Mr. Wallis served as Senior Vice President, Product and Brand Development since August 2007. From 2004 through 2007, Mr. Wallis served as Senior Vice President, Global Asset Management, where he was responsible for the management of more than 40 Hyatt-owned properties across North America, Latin America, Europe and Asia. A British national, Wallis was educated at Ecole Hotelière de Lausanne School in Switzerland. Mr. Wallis will be the guest of honour of The Hyatt Student Prize 2013.

Nikos Aliagas

Nikos Aliagas is a French-Greek journalist, television and radio host. He is renowned for presenting the music reality program Star Academy for 8 years. Aliagas speaks 5 languages, including English. He will be this year’s Master of Ceremony for The Hyatt Student Prize.