John Q. Hammons Hotels & Resorts has several rooms with a view. The hotel development company owns and operates approximately 80 hotels in about 25 states across the US. Most of its properties are upscale, operating under major hotel brands such as Embassy Suites, Holiday Inn, Marriott, Radisson, and Renaissance. The company targets locations for its hotels near state capitals, universities, airports, corporate headquarters, or office parks in midsized and smaller markets. Management services include human resources, sales and marketing, and food and beverage administration. The company was founded by John Q. Hammons in 1958 with the purchase of 10 Holiday Inn franchises.
New York-based real estate investment group Atrium Holding Co. owns a controlling stake in 43 of the company's hotels, while founder John Q. Hammons owns the other 35. Hammons is a well-known businessman and philanthropist in Springfield, Missouri, whose name graces Missouri State University's basketball arena (JQH Arena), a local baseball field (Hammons Field), and the John Q. Hammons Parkway. CEO Jacqueline Dowdy, a former bookkeeper, accountant, and treasurer of the company, previously served as the longtime assistant of Hammons. She was appointed head of the firm in 2010 after Hammons became ill.
In addition to her CEO role, Dowdy controls the business and personal affairs of the 92-year-old Hammons (who has no heirs). The hotel magnate granted Dowdy power of attorney after he entered a nursing home in 2010. Eight friends of Hammons subsequently filed suit, claiming that Dowdy was keeping him in seclusion, preventing them from visiting Hammons or talking to him on the phone. A state investigation concluded that the complaints were unsubstantiated, and Dowdy has denied any wrongdoing. – less