George Drepaul – 31 Years
It is with a grateful and sad heart that we bid farewell to George Drepaul. After 31 years of service with Denihan, George will be moving on to a new chapter in his life once the Dumont NYC closes. George has had the unique distinction of working at 6 of our hotels and being a GM at 4 of them in addition to serving a stint in Corporate HR.
George began his career with Denihan in April 1986 as a night auditor at a hotel we once owned and managed – Lyden House. He quickly moved on to other operational positions in the front office at that hotel and the Gardens NYC. For a period of time, he was AGM of our largest property, Manhattan NYC, where George would say he got his PhD in hotel operations! His leadership, eye for detail and bottom line focus served him well during his GM tenure at the Eastgate Tower, Lyden House, Shelburne NYC and now Dumont NYC in its final stages as a hotel.
We could always count on George to have the best interest of the company in mind. His loyalty, commitment and integrity are values this company was built on and lived by George every day. We are much appreciative and grateful to him. These values should be an inspiration to all of us. It is what has allowed us to thrive as a family business for over 50 years. It will continue to be the foundation for our success into the future.
For those of you who know George, you know that he is a private person and did not want the attention of a public farewell. We respect that but also did not want to miss the opportunity to recognize him for all he has done for us and demonstrate the impact he has had on others.
Following are a few stories that people wanted to share about George. We hope you will enjoy them.
In the meantime – thank you George from the bottom of our hearts for all you have done to make Denihan the company that it is today.
Brooke and Patrick
A FEW STORIES ABOUT GEORGE …
One of my favorite stories was when George was the Assistant GM at the Manhattan. The GM at the time, Mark Hurewitz, George, and I were discussing something. George got called out or beeped and he left the office. Mark and I were still meeting when George walked back in. He waited while we finished talking and then in his calm, normally quiet voice said, “The bank downstairs was just robbed.” Mark jumped up! George was very matter of fact in times of crisis. – Steve Alfieri
I remember a time years ago I went over to the Eastgate for a meeting and I found George in the Lobby handling an issue with the Fire Command Station. He was acting as FSD and Chief Engineer. I asked him what was going on and he nonchalantly detailed how he was correcting the issue. He had also just come from the boiler room where he had worked to get one of the boilers back up. George’s hands on style and mechanical ability is always inspiring. – Brian Gehlich
One of the things that impressed me the most about George was the way he was with numbers. It was like having a human calculator as a GM. He might forget something about where items were or someone’s birthday but if we were 2 cents over or short he knew exactly where they were! – Belfor Gutierrez
George was my HR Screener in 2001 and sent me to The Dumont and The Shelburne to interview. I started at The Dumont and thank George for bringing me into Denihan. George is a strong leader and a man with great family values. His contribution and commitment to the organization was something to be respected and admired. – Joe Rauer
I met George about 21 years ago when I started in the company. Since, I had the pleasure of working with him at the Manhattan, Shelburne, Dumont and even Human Resources when he had a brief role in Employment on 10th Avenue. I have so many memories and shared a lot of laughs with George, but if I really think about one memory that stands out, it was at the Southgate Tower (Manhattan NYC). I was about 17 years old and it was my first day working as an intern that summer. I was stationed at the Southgate Tower and George was the AGM. He invited me to attend the morning stand up meeting with the team. At the Southgate, there was a Bank located on the lower level entrance that was leased out. During stand up, the bank was robbed and the alarms went off. George immediately reacted and grabbed his suit jacket and ran to the lobby and bank. I remember thinking why would he grab his suit jacket to put on before running to the lobby in an emergency situation. Throughout the years working with George, I frequently think of this memory, and realized he grabbed his jacket because that is his level of Professionalism. Professionalism defines George and is a quality he carries that has influenced countless associates and team members throughout the years at Denihan. As an associate that met George 21 years ago, I can personally say he has influenced me and played a very significant role in my career with Denihan and I will truly miss working with him. – Reginia Yorio
George to me was one of the best business partners that you could rely on to stand tall with you. – Eleanor Carter
In September, 1992, I had just graduated college with a degree in Hospitality Management and was heading to East 64th Street for my first real “interview”. I remember how nervous I was as I really didn’t know what to expect. I walked in to the Lyden Gardens Hotel a total wreck and approached the Front Desk requesting to speak to the Director of Front Office who I was scheduled to meet with to discuss a potential GSA position. I took a seat and was then approached by a smiling, friendly young man who introduced himself to me as George Drepaul. Little did I realize at the time how important this person would be to me throughout my career at Denihan. George did eventually hire me for that GSA position even though I am sure he saw how nervous and inexperienced I was in our interview. However, that nervousness faded once I started working at the Gardens as George put me at ease very quickly and he patiently showed me “the ropes”. I was only 21 at the time but recognized at that young age how lucky I was to work with such a generous, caring and professional Manager. George was a coach, mentor and sometimes “big brother” to me during our time working together and I sincerely appreciate all the guidance and support he has provided to me even after our time together at the Gardens. I wish George every success as he embarks on this new chapter in his career and I am forever grateful for the opportunity to work with and learn from such an amazing hospitality professional. – Jennifer Baldwin
Working with George has been one of the most rewarding experiences for me at Denihan. He’s always been razor focused on results and driven by his passion for the hospitality business and the bottom line. The best part: George built collaborative teams which he always kept up-to-date on the latest celebrity news and current events! – Tim Devlin
It’s been a pleasure working with George over the last few years. He is very passionate and a great person to work for. He will be missed! – Anne Maire Lachmeyer
He is a great mentor, always encouraging and challenging me at the same time, since our tenure started back at The Eastgate. I will miss how George would start RevMax with the latest celebrity gossip as an icebreaker. I will cherish all the great memories we have. – Joyce Rosario