Christopher Barry's hospitality career includes five years leading membership at Restaurants Canada.
HT caught up with Christopher Barry who recently joined Restaurant Technology Network (RTN) as Strategic Director, Membership and Communications. He is based in Toronto.
HT: Welcome, Christopher! Tell us about your background. Christopher Barry: Enrolled in the Hotel Management Program at George Brown College, and started on a journey of management experiences with the hospitality industry’s most recognized businesses and attractions including: Walt Disney World, McDonald’s Restaurants of Canada, Hotel Director of Sales and Operations... and spent the last 16 years as a leader in the Membership Arena with Destination Toronto(11) and Restaurants Canada(5).
In the middle of my career life, I explored the world of marketing, graphic design, print, and package prototype production. I had the pleasure of working with North America’s top food and beverage manufacturers and advertising agencies, managing all processes related to the development of packaging and support marketing materials for new product testing, focus groups and television commercials.
I was invited to join the team at EnsembleIQ eight months ago as Director of Membership Development in the Path to Purchase Institute. And was recently invited to join the RTN and HT family as Strategic Director of Membership and Communications.
HT: What are you looking forward to most in your new role?
Barry: I am excited about this opportunity that brings me back into the hospitality arena. Looking forward to enhancing RTN’s communications and messaging, introducing an elevated membership benefit package to the community and to engaging our member brands (socializing their value to the industry, connecting them with relevant partnership opportunities and ultimately, adding value to their RTN experience by connecting them with the dynamic sector of hospitality operators in North America.
I am also very excited about expanding RTN’s and HT’s relationship with Canada’s hospitality technology suppliers.
HT: What do you like about the restaurant industry?
Barry: I have always had a passion for hospitality and service. Creating memorable experiences for the customer via quality and service. This industry is full of passion! Over the years, I have had the pleasure of working with some the most extraordinary people who share my passion for foodservice and hospitality.
HT: One thing you want RTN members to know about you?
Barry: At this stage of my career, my passion is still very much with the industry along with being an integral part of this robust membership community.
HT: What technology are you most jazzed about – personally or professionally? Barry: I am jazzed about any technology, whether front or back of the house, that provides intuitive efficiency to operators… contributing to an improved and healthy bottom line.
HT: What was your first job?
Barry: Dishwasher/busboy at an independent family restaurant. I was just 14 years old. Learned about service culture, introduced to the importance of recipe costing for profitability and was introduced to the art of hosting special events. I fell in love with the hospitality industry!
HT: Favorite meal? Barry: #1 - Steak dinner with all of the fixings. #2 - Always up for a great burger!
HT: Favorite vacation memory? Barry: I love going anywhere tropical… Loved Punta de Mita in Mexico… 5 star resort (Marival Armony), great beaches, awesome chefs and service. Really enjoyed hopping on a luxury sailing yacht for a whale watching day trip. It was amazing!