Board of Directors

American Hotel Income Properties is led by an experienced team with deep roots in hotel ownership and management and together they are committed to unitholders to build on disciplined investing, sustainable returns and value growth.


W. Michael Murphy, Chairman (Independent Director)

Mr. Murphy is Head of Lodging and Leisure Capital Markets of the First Fidelity Mortgage Corporation. From 1998 to 2002, Mr. Murphy served as the Senior Vice President and Chief Development Officer of ResortQuest International, Inc., an NYSE-listed company. Prior to joining ResortQuest International Inc., from 1995 to 1997, Mr. Murphy was President of Footprints International, a company involved in the planning and development of environmentally friendly hotel properties. From 1994 to 1996, he was a Senior Managing Director of Geller & Co., a Chicago-based hotel advisory and asset management firm. Mr. Murphy has twice been Co-Chairman of the Industry Real Estate Finance Advisory Council (IREFAC) of the American Hotel and Lodging Association and is currently a director of Ashford Inc., a leading provider of asset management and other services to companies within the hospitality industry.


Charles van der Lee, Vice Chair (Independent Director)

Chuck is currently the principal owner, President and Chief Executive Officer of Papa M Pizza Canada Inc., the master franchise for Papa Murphy’s restaurants in Canada. From May 1990 to September 2009, Chuck served as President and Chief Executive Officer of Rogers Retail (a division of Rogers Communications Inc.) and during his tenure he was responsible for expanding the network of company stores from 33 to over 400 locations. From 2004 to 2015, Chuck also served as an independent director of Amica Mature Lifestyles Inc. culminating in the successful sale of this company in late 2015. Chuck graduated with a Bachelor of Commerce Degree in Business Administration from the University of Alberta.


Matthew Cervino, Director

Mr. Cervino is the Managing Director and Portfolio Manager of the US Value-Add Funds for BentallGreenOak, drawing on more than 16 years in acquiring/disposing and asset managing office, industrial, multi-family, retail and hospitality real estate assets across the U.S. Mr. Cervino’s leadership at BentallGreenOak includes an active role in driving the firm’s ESG and diversity and inclusion missions and is keenly involved in the mentorship and development of the next generation of investment professionals at the firm. Mr. Cervino serves on the board of directors for the Institute for Community Living (ICL) where he also chairs the Real Estate committee for the non-profit organization.


Stephen J. Evans, Independent Director

Mr. Evans has over 25 years of real estate experience in both Canada and the U.S. with an extensive track record in all areas of commercial real estate. His public companies have raised over Cdn$1.8 billion of equity over the past decade. Mr. Evans was a co-founder, CEO and Trustee of Pure Industrial Real Estate Trust (“PIRET”), which was a publicly-listed real estate investment trust on the TSX with a diversified portfolio of income-producing industrial properties in major markets across Canada and the U.S. Since it’s initial public offering in 2007, PIRET grew from a small portfolio to a dominant industrial platform of industrial logistics assets and was successfully sold to Blackstone Property Partners for C$3.8 billion in 2018. Mr. Evans was also a co-founder, CEO and director of Pure Multi-Family REIT LP (“Pure Multi”), which was a publicly-listed real estate investment trust on the TSX and owned and operated a portfolio of high quality apartment communities in the U.S. sunbelt growth markets. Since its initial public offering, Pure Multi grew to over 7,000 apartments and was ultimately sold to an affiliate of Cortland Partners, LLC in September 2019 for approximately Cdn$1.6 billion. Mr. Evans is the principal of Sunstone, which has acquired, redeveloped and drove asset management of over C$800 million in retail, industrial, residential and hotel properties in Canada and the U.S. Mr. Evans also co-founded the REIT.


Richard Frank, Independent Director

Mr. Frank’s experience includes serving as Chief Investment Officer at Pillar Hotels and Resorts, one of the largest independent management companies in the United States; serving as Senior Vice President Hotel Investments at Behringer Harvard, a real estate investment management firm that has managed over $6 billion of equity; and serving as Vice President at AEW Capital Management and Olympus Real Estate Partners. Mr. Frank also gained considerable hotel operational experience at Starwood Hotels and ITT Sheraton Corporation. He began his hotel career over 30 years ago at Arthur Andersen, specializing in the real estate and hospitality industries. Based in Dallas, Mr. Frank also holds an undergraduate degree from the School of Hotel Administration at Cornell University and an MBA from Fordham University. Mr. Frank is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA).


Mahmood Khimji, Director

Mahmood Khimji is a Co-Founder and Managing Principal of Highgate, a fully-integrated real estate investment and hospitality management company. Prior to founding Highgate in 1988, Mr. Khimji practiced law at Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison. Mr. Khimji is a member of the Young Presidents’ Organization (YPO), the Real Estate Forum and a member of the Board of Directors of Sagicor Financial Corporation Limited and Playa Hotels & Resorts. Mr. Khimji also serves on the National Committee of Aga Khan Foundation USA and on the Boards of Aga Khan Museum and the Asia Society. Additionally, he serves on the Board of Visitors for Columbia Law School. He attended the University of British Columbia, holds a Bachelor of Arts, summa cum laude, from the University of Houston, and a Juris Doctor from Columbia Law School.


Tamara L. Lawson, Independent Director

Tamara L. Lawson is the Chief Financial Officer of QuadReal, a Canadian real estate investment, development and management company operating on a global scale. Previously, she was Chief Financial Officer of Dream Global REIT, a TSX listed real estate investment trust. Prior to joining Dream Global REIT in 2016, Ms. Lawson was the Chief Financial Officer of Starlight Investments Ltd., a private real estate investment and asset management company focused primarily on residential and commercial assets. Ms. Lawson was the Chief Financial Officer and Corporate Secretary of InnVest Real Estate Investment Trust (“InnVest”), a TSX-listed real estate investment trust, and the Chief Financial Officer of Westmont, a privately-held hospitality organization. Ms. Lawson joined Westmont in 2001 as its Chief Financial Officer and became Chief Financial Officer of InnVest in 2002 when it went public. Ms. Lawson has over 25 years of financial management, acquisitions, corporate governance, investor relations and capital markets experience. Prior to joining Westmont in 2001, Ms. Lawson held senior executive positions at several major Canadian public companies, including Executive Vice President, Chief Financial Officer and Secretary of Chapters Inc. and Treasurer of Sears Canada Inc. Ms. Lawson holds a Master of Business Administration degree from the Schulich School of Business at York University and is a Chartered Professional Accountant (CA).


Robert F. O'Neill, Director

Mr. O’Neill is a co-founder of American Hotel Income Properties REIT and served as the Chief Executive Officer of from February 2013 to September 2018, and has been in the industry of hotels and property management for over 40 years.

Mr. O’Neill was the cofounder of Canadian Hotel Income Properties Real Estate Investment Trust (“CHIP REIT”) in 1997 and served as its President and Chief Executive Officer until September 1998. Mr. O’Neill was also a cofounder of the Coast Hotel chain in 1972. In 1988, he was instrumental in managing the sale of the Coast Hotel chain to OKABE Co. of Tokyo and was retained to manage it as the President and Chief Executive Officer until 1991. Mr. O’Neill was President and Chief Operating Officer of National Caterers Ltd. and O’Neill Railway Catering Ltd. from 1977 to 1991. National Caterers Ltd. was Canada’s largest operator and supplier of remote site construction camps providing food, lodging and support services for construction workers. O’Neill Railway Catering Ltd. served both the CP Rail in Western Canada and the BC Railway in British Columbia on and offline.

Mr. O’Neill was nominated for Canada’s Entrepreneur of the Year in 1998. In 2004, he received two awards, the Industry Entrepreneur Award from the Vancouver branch of the Canadian Foodservice Association, and the Distinguished Alumni Award for Entrepreneurial Innovation from the B.C. Institute of Technology. Mr. O’Neill is recognized as a leading authority in the hotel industry and is a regular speaker at industry conferences in Canada and the U.S. Mr. O’Neill is a graduate of the British Columbia Institute of Technology, Hotel and Foodservice Program, and received his diploma in Hotel Management in 1972. He is a former Secretary of the Canadian Council of the Young Presidents’ Organization and a current member of the World Presidents’ Organization.