Betsy Helgager Hughes
BLH Consulting, Inc. for H. J. Russell & Company
She shares an overview of what life was like growing up a Russell, her leadership style in running Concessions International LLC, and the opportunities for women in the hospitality industry
(Black PR Wire) ATLANTA – Known for her role in running Concessions International LLC (CI) as the CEO, the Russell Family Foundation, and being on the Board of Directors and co-owner of H. J. Russell & Company, Donata Russell Ross shares intimate childhood memories that include swimming at the family home with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., along with how she’s managed the airport concessionaire business throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, and the opportunities for women in the industry.
“When I first started in the industry a little over 35 years ago, it was highly dominated by males, but recently, I’d say over the past 10 years, I’ve seen more women in leadership roles,” said Russell Ross. “In fact, I see women having major food and beverage companies and running airport concession companies. I think very highly of the hospitality business as a great industry for women. It’s a really fun industry.”
Visit your favorite podcast app, like Apple Podcast or Spotify, to catch up on past episodes and to tune into future ones. Learn more from Donata Russell Ross, the CEO who listens to lead, about her life story, and hear her inspiring words for women, especially those considering the hospitality, food and beverage industry for a career.
H. J. Russell & Company (Russell), one of the largest Black family-owned construction services and real estate development companies in the United States, known for building iconic structures, debuted its company podcast, “We Build: The Podcast,” in April 2021. Hosted by Russell’s Director of Marketing, Lonoia Murphy and Paul Bryant, Vice President of External Affairs, the two help pull back the curtain to allow others access to the “how” and “why” of not just building structures, but also building communities, relationships, careers, and legacies in the industry with purpose.
H. J. RUSSELL & COMPANY
Founded in 1952, H. J. Russell & Company is one of the largest minority-owned construction services and real estate development firms in the United States. A multi-faceted organization providing integrated solutions and an exceptional customer experience, Russell has developed, designed/built, renovated, and managed some of the nation’s most complex, high profile projects involving multiple stakeholders and requiring exceptional diplomacy and skill, including the Mercedes-Benz Stadium with the HHRM JV and the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture with Clark Construction and Smoot Construction. Today, the company is at number 25 on the BE Top 100 list. Visit hjrussell.com to learn more about the firm.