Career Development & Placement
Meet your future employer at Career Fair.
Meet the keynote speaker.
A 24-year hotel-catering professional, Lisa Hopkins is the director of catering and conferences for The Houstonian Hotel and the national president of the National Association for Catering and Events (NACE).
A native of O’Fallon, Illinois, Lisa earned a BA in Speech Communication from the University of Illinois—Urbana-Champaign in 1986.
Her catering career began in 1989 at the McCormick Hotel in Chicago, where she took a job as a catering manager and was later promoted to director of catering. In 1993, she became the director of catering and convention services at the Adam’s Mark Hotel in Charlotte. She returned to the Midwest in 1995 as the director of catering and convention services at the Seelbach Hotel in Louisville, where she was promoted to director of sales and marketing later that year.
In 1996, Lisa arrived in Texas, working at the Medallion Hotel. She returned to her catering roots in 1998, joining The Houstonian Hotel as the director of catering and conferences, where she remains today, overseeing the sales and service efforts of seven managers and over $13 million in revenue annually. She also personally handles high-profile events, like the George Bush Presidential Library Foundation Vintner’s Dinner and the Share Our Strength Taste of the Nation Party, among others.
Outside of work, Lisa is actively involved in the National Association of Catering and Events (NACE). She’s held multiple leadership positions within the organization, including president of the Houston Chapter, Region IV vice president on the NACE National Board, chair of the Chapter Presidents’ Council, chair of the National Membership and Chapter Relations Committee, first vice president of the NACE National Board, member of the 2010 Leadership Summit Planning Committee and national president. She’s also been the recipient of numerous awards and honors in the organization, including NACE Caterer Member of the Year, Houston Chapter Caterer of the Year, Houston Chapter Hall of Fame member and the inaugural Cougar Advocate Award, which the NACE University of Houston Chapter named in her honor.
In February 2013, Lisa was named to My Table Magazine’s “100 Women: Who’s Who in Houston’s Food and Beverage World,” and she’s been featured in articles in The Houston Chronicle, Wedding Planner, Convene and other special events magazines on food and beverage trends.
As the president of NACE, Hopkins has been interviewed by Fox News and CNN about wedding tips, and she made a guest appearance on “The Marie Osmond Show” to talk about outdoor party planning.