Consultants & Trainers
Chairman – Steven Ferry was born in the South of England, where he attended private schools and Art College. He worked both in the hospitality industry and in private service in England during the 1980s before training as a butler in England and then working as one in the United States. He established the International Guild of Traditional Butlers and wrote the basic manual on how to butle in the early 1990s. By the mid-1990s, he had left private service to focus on his writing.
Drawing on his early years as an educator in England, he had published three textbooks for the profession – “The British Butlers Bible,” “Butlers and Household Managers, 21st Century Professionals,” and “Hotel Butlers, the Great Service Differentiators” and began to train butlers in private households. He also consulted employers about their domestic needs and occasionally assisted with personnel procurement when requested. He subsequently broadened his campaign to improve on service standards using the butler model, by providing training and consulting services to the hospitality industry.
In 2003, he introduced the spa butler as a resource for hotels and resorts with spas, to assist them in bringing about the ultimate spa experience for guests and in 2006 introduced rating standards to the industry for butlers in hotels. He has lectured at a number of venues, including Harvard University.
Mr. Ferry currently trains butlers and other household and hospitality employees on the butler model of service in private households and estates, hotels, resorts, spas and private villas. He is on the Editorial Board of Hotel Business magazine and writes for a variety of industry trade magazines and newsletters.
Prior to working in the hospitality profession, Mr. Ferry was a professor of education and worked in the non-profit sector in various capacities. He has close to 20 books published, as well as hundreds of articles & photographs for major US publishers and corporations.
The British Butlers’ Bible, Mansion Publishing, 2001
Butlers and Household Managers, 21st Century Professionals, Imprint Books, 2002
Hotel Butlers, The Great Service Differentiators, Booksurge Publishing, 2004
Founder, International Guild of Traditional Butlers, 1992
Executive Member, International Guild of Professional Butlers (past)
Founder, The International Institute of Modern Butlers
Visiting Professor, The International Butler Academy (past)
Editorial Board, Hotel Business Magazine
Amer A. Vargas graduated with a Tourism Degree specializing in hotel management from CETT (Center for Tourism Studies) in Barcelona and spent the following decade in the service industry. Beginning as a waiter and then supervisor in high-end restaurants, he was next made responsible for raising service standards through staff training programs. After receiving further training as a butler, he worked as a butler and valet in private service as well as hotels in England and Europe.
During this time period, he translated the best-selling industry texts Butlers & Household Managers, 21st Century Professionals and Hotel Butlers, The Great Service Differentiators into Spanish and is currently creating butler training materials in the Spanish language.
As the Director of Spanish-speaking Markets, Amer is responsible for making the technology of butling available in private residences and hotels in the Spanish-speaking countries of the world. He provides consultation, placement, and training services in these countries.
Frank Mitchell grew up in South Africa and spent the first ten years of his career in the banking industry before training as a butler and working in private service, managing three properties.
He next switched to the hospitality industry and helped open the first all-butler hotel in the Mediterranean, training the butlers on a program that he developed. He was subsequently asked to join a Swiss hotel management company, on behalf of which he trained hotel butlers at various locations in the Indian Ocean and Russian Federation. His responsibilities included hiring and training staff, procuring equipment, writing SOP¹s, and drawing up departmental budgets. Mr. Mitchell joined the Institute in late 2007 as a trainer and consultant with primary responsibilities for the African Continent, Middle East and Indian Ocean region.
Born and raised in England, Mr David Robinson received his initial hospitality training there, which prepared him for future work in both private service and the world of hospitality.
Over the years, he has managed high end, luxury inns, worked as a butler in private service, and assisted in the opening of a 5-Star / 5-Diamond hotel by helping to establish the large butler department.
He currently writes a popular column for butlers and hospitality professionals entitled “Mr. Robinson Writes.” Mr. Robinson joined the Institute in 2007 as Vice President Condo Hotels. He now lives with his wife in the United States.
Ms. Monica Ferry was born and raised in Holland. Speaking English and Dutch fluently, French and German acceptably, she worked in the non-profit sector in Europe and the United States in a variety of capacities, including as a teacher, for over 15 years.
Monica later worked as head housekeeper in England, as part of a household management team with her husband. When they moved to the United States, she resumed her earlier profession as a paralegal for the Small Business Administration in Alaska and for the plaintiffs on the Exxon Valdez oil spill case. She subsequently earned her MBA and worked as the business manager for three small businesses in Florida.
She currently runs the day to day affairs of the Institute from her position as the Executive Director at the Institute’s headquarters in Florida. From time to time, she assists with teaching larger classes and teaching executive skills to butler managers.
Wayne Fitzharris is a Master of H.C.I.M.A. (Hotel & Catering International Management Association) and studied marketing at Cornell University. As Director and lead trainer, he oversees The International Guild of Butlers and Housemanagers, (IGBH) which looks after the recruitment, placement and training of Executive Butlers, Household Managers and Household Staff around the world. Wayne has also been asked to supply consultancy and etiquette training for many of the families he worked for around the world. In addition to his training commitments, Wayne is a Director of Global Search International responsible for the Executive Recruitment of some of the Hotel Industry’s leading players in some of the finest resorts around the world.
Wayne began his career at the Dorchester Hotel, and helped open St Andrews Old Course Hotel in Scotland, which won the Caterer Magazine’s “”Hotel of the Year” award. Two years later he took on the role of Household Manager for the Royal Family of Jordan, in Amman, where he supervised over 750 staff, and was tasked with training and bringing the standards up to date.
In 1996, Wayne developed his training skills at various luxury resorts and restaurants around the world. By 2002 he had set up Global Search International and in 2006, joined forces with the International Institute of Modern Butlers LLC.
Pamela Spruce has fifteen years experience in the residential placement industry and in 1996 established the Australian Butler School.
The school specialises in the training of residential and resort butlers and Pamela is involved in training and placements as well as consulting to both private clients and hotels and resorts.
In addition Ms Spruce is directly involved in residential recruitment, is a member of Tourism and Training Australia and a consultant to clients in the resort and service industries. In 2006 Pamela affiliated with the International Institute of Modern Butlers LLC.
Mr. Andreas H. Mulder was born and raised in South Africa and, after attending the South African School for Butlers and Household Personnel in Cape Town, consulted and trained in luxury hotels in Europe, the Indian Ocean, and the Russian Federation. Wherever he went, he helped raise staff service standards, and implemented one-on-one butler services, including developing standard operating procedures and in-house forms. He also helped to open two of the hotels where he trained.
Mr. Mulder joined The International Institute of Modern Butlers LLC in 2007 as a Consultant and Trainer for the African Continent and Indian Ocean.
Paul Hogan is a butler/estate manager with many years of international experience. An Australian by birth, he has resided in the USA since 1992. More recently, he gained notoriety as “the butler” on the two hit television reality shows, “Joe Millionaire.”
Born and raised in Melbourne, Australia, Mr. Hogan entered the Australian Diplomatic Service. Over the next two decades, he served in Canada, Yugoslavia, the Caribbean, Los Angeles and Argentina. The completel management of Australian Embassies became his area of expertise and as a Consul, he provided assistance to fellow countrymen who found themselves in need.
As a butler/estate manager, Mr. Hogan has worked in Aspen and New York City, with short-term assignments in the United Kingdom, France, and Italy.
John Robertson develops and presents business etiquette seminars and workshops for service professionals in the luxury residential and hospitality markets and for front-line professionals in businesses where service is the essential factor in corporate success.
His business protocol and etiquette seminars attract professionals from a wide variety of industries, whose products are essentially the same as the competition’s and where one-to-one contact with the client is the defining difference. Management consulting firms employ John’s skills to groom candidates seeking career change, as well as improving their own consultants’ business etiquette skills.
John has taught service skills in luxury hotels and exclusive clubs, in private homes and aboard private yachts. His experience in private house management includes service to families at the highest end of the Forbes list.
He received his formal protocol and etiquette training and certification from The Protocol School of Washington; is certified in the Starkey Household Management System; trained at the Ivor Spencer International School for Butler Administrators in London; is a graduate of the University of Toronto and of Concordia University; attended Harvard University’s summer program in business administration; and his cumulative education and experience has been determined by Cornell University the equivalent of a Bachelor of Arts degree in hospitality management.
Born and raised in Sochi, Mr. Sergey Pavlenko received his Diploma in Management & Administration from Sochi State University and his ABC of Hospitality (equivalent of a Master’s) from Bilkent University.
He has spent the last decade working in all hotel departments in leading hotel chains such as Radisson SAS, Kempinski, and Ritz-Carlton. He then trained and worked as a butler in a private palace before establishing a Five Butler rating service in one of these hotels.
Mr. Pavlenko joined the International Institute of Modern Butlers LLC in 2007 as Vice President Russian Federation Operations.
Okan Güdü graduated from Tourism Management & Hotel Administration before working in various positions up to General Manager at different hotels between 1985 and 2003. He then established a consultancy for the hospitality sector, pioneering Mystery Guest services in Turkey and conducting quality reviews at over a hundred establishments in Turkey, the Middle East, and Russian-speaking countries. He also provides trainings and management consultancy for high-end hotels. Mr. Güdü began his collaboration with the Institute in 2007 and joined its ranks as VP Mystery Guest visits in 2008.
N.B. Image has been ‘Photoshopped‘ to hide identity so he can perform .mystery guest’ visits.