Raise DC Leadership Council


Thomas Penny

Courtyard Marriott Convention Center
General Manager

Thomas Penny is the General Manager of the Courtyard Marriott Convention Center,  one of the highest revenue-per available-room-producing-Courtyards in the world.

Beginning at age 18, Penny went from dishwasher to van driver to front desk clerk to restaurant manager to food & beverage director in the span of 18 months. Over the next 12 years, Penny received numerous promotions on his journey to GM. He was promoted at the age of 33 to his current position, making him the youngest hotel GM in the city.

In an effort to bring the fruits of the hospitality industry to disadvantaged communities, Penny serves as the managing member of Progressive Partners, LLC. Progressive Partners consults major universities and projects such as the Marriott Marquis Job Training Program and MGM National Harbor.

Penny served as Chair of the Board of the Hotel Association of DC and now serves on the Executive Board of Destination DC. Penny is a member of the Board of Trustees of the Washington Hospitality Foundation, SOME (So Others May Eat), and DC Central Kitchen. Additionally, he is the Co-Chair of the DC National Academy Foundation's Hospitality Advisory Board—a body of hospitality executives whose mission is to expose District youth to the hotel business from operations to ownership. Penny also serves on the Board of the DC Public Education Fund, the DC Workforce Investment Council (WIC), DC Career Academy Network, DC High School Credit Flexibility Task Force, and Prince George’s Community College’s Hospitality Executive Advisory Board.

Penny graduated with a business degree from the University of Maryland College Park. He is currently working on a book titled, "Hope, Help and Hospitality", chronicling his life story and experiences within the hospitality industry.