Inspired by his father’s diligence and perseverance as a hardworking roofer, A.J. Ward developed a deep dedication to the hospitality industry. His father’s steadfast work ethic, belief in completing tasks and emphasis on doing things the right way profoundly influenced A.J.’s personal and professional values. As Regional Director of Operations for LBA as of January 2022, A.J. brings those qualities to his role overseeing the Nashville and Panama City/Panama City Beach properties.
A.J. began his 29-year career in the hospitality industry as an overnight bellboy at the Hilton Los Angeles. Since then, he has held various hotel operations roles, from guest services to General Manager, and even opening General Manager of the first-ever tri-branded Marriott property in Nashville. Beyond his work in hotels, A.J. has taught Hospitality Management courses at the community-college level and developed training programs for high-school vocational students.
A graduate of Colorado State University with a BS in business management and a minor in human-resources training and development, A.J.’s accomplishments include several prestigious recognition awards from Marriott and six hotel openings.
In his free time, A.J. enjoys softball, flag football, biking and woodworking. He cherishes spending weekends with his wife and daughter, playing games and taking his daughter to martial-arts lessons. An open and direct person, A.J. perpetually seeks self-evolution, drawing inspiration from Benjamin Franklin’s wisdom: “Without continual growth and progress, such words as improvement, achievement and success have no meaning.”