FBAA Gala16 Industry Professional of the Year - James Johnson Headshot cropped
A native New Yorker, James Johnson (affectionately known to the hotel team and many of his clients as “JJ”) has been leading the Hilton New York’s Catering Operation which includes catering activities for special events, meetings and conferences since 2000. Clients are thrilled by JJ’s attention to detail when executing events in the hotel’s diverse selection of function space. His keen focus on presentation for small or large functions is outstanding.

The Hilton New York boasts the city’s largest hotel Grand Ballroom which has played host to many political and social dignitaries since the hotel’s grand opening in 1963 by the company’s legendary founder, Conrad Hilton. Prior to joining the Hilton New York, JJ held such catering positions at the prestigious Fontainebleau Hilton in Miami Beach; the renowned Waldorf=Astoria, and the San Francisco Hilton. He also spent a culinary summer in Vienna, Austria, serving as a Commis de Cuisine at the Vienna Intercontinental Hotel, where he gained the incredible experience of working in a leading European kitchen.

James is a recipient of numerous awards including the Circle of Excellence; a designation awarded to the top sales team members in Hilton.

In his spare time James competes in Triathlons and has completed over 12 races including two full Ironman races raising money for the National SIDS Foundation and The Navy SEAL Foundation.

James attended Florida International University with a focus on Hotel Management. He is married to the love of his life, Ellie, and has three children and five grandchildren and loves spending time with family and working out!

He is a member of NACE, The National Association for Catering and Events, and The Food and Beverage Association as well as the Les Amis Escoffier Society of New York.