At the Awards Dinner held on February 8th at the Gaylord Texan Resort in Grapevine, the General Manager of The Pacific-Union Club in San Francisco, Calif. was recognized with The Mel Rex Award, for epitomizing how the club “[does] only first-class business in a first-class way.”
In addition to presentations at their individual clubs that will be held throughout the coming year, the 2019 Excellence in Club Management winners, along with honorees from previous years and members, past and present, of the ECM selection committee, were recognized at an Awards Dinner that was held at the Gaylord Texan Resort in Grapevine, Texas on Saturday, February 8, in conjunction with the 2020 World Conference of the Club Management Association of America.
This year’s Awards Dinner was sponsored by Denehy Club Thinking Partners, ForeTees LLC, IZON Golf, Outdoor Lighting Perspectives, and Preferred Club.
A full report on the Awards Dinner will appear in the March issue of Club + Resort Business, and detailed profiles of all of the ECM award winners will be published in C+RB throughout 2020.
The Excellence in Club Management Awards were founded by the McMahon Group in 1997 and have been co-sponsored by Club + Resort Business since 2005 and the National Club Association since 2018.
The Mel Rex Award (City, Athletic or Specialty (Non-Golf) Club)
Thomas E. Gaston, Jr., CCM, ECM
General Manager, The Pacific-Union Club, San Francisco, Calif.
In 1933, J. P. Morgan, Jr. crystallized the mission of his company as “doing only first-class business in a first-class way.” J. Richard Fredericks, President of The Pacific-Union Club, was reminded of that mantra when nominating Tom Gaston for Excellence in Club Management recognition and reflecting on the 28 years that Gaston has been the club’s General Manager.
“When I think of Tom’s leadership, I think of [Morgan’s] famous quote,” Fredericks wrote. “Tom reflects that attitude; he lives and breathes The Pacific-Union Club and wants only the best for it. He knows every aspect of the club down to the tiniest detail, and works incredibly hard to make sure it is a world-class social club.”
Gaston’s career prior to coming to The Pacific-Union Club included 12 years in food-and-beverage management for Hyatt Hotel properties, and then three years as Assistant General Manager of San Francisco’s Bohemian Club. When he became The Pacific-Union Club’s GM in 1992, it had been known primarily as a luncheon club. But under his leadership it has expanded to now be a full-service club that offers breakfast, lunch and dinner. The club has also gone from having no significant catering operation when Gaston arrived to now hosting some 300 private events annually.