Jay S. Patel

  • UWF BEI Vice Chairperson
  • Business Owner and Operator

Jay Patel serves on the UWF Board of Trustees and is the Board's representative on the BEI Board of Directors. Mr. Patel is the Vice Chair of the BEI Board and has served in that role since BEI's inception in 2012.

Mr. Patel, of Pensacola, is a real estate developer and manages multiple assets of franchised hotels in the panhandle area of the Gulf Coast. Trustee Patel authored a book called Franchising Is It Fair? how to negotiate and equitable franchise Agreement and played an active role while serving various positions over two decades for the Asian American Hotel Owners Association (AAHOA) and also co-founded the National Association of Black Hotel Owners, Operators & Developers (NABHOOD).

For many of his accomplishments over the years, Trustee Patel was recognized and honored with three Honorary Doctorates rewarding him for his implication in education, theology & his vision to better the hospitality industry. Over the years, Trustee Patel has been the recipient of multiple industry-recognized awards from various national organizations including the prestigious Outstanding Service Award, The Award of Excellence, The Spirit Award, Strategic Partnership Award, The Chairman's Award and most recently, The Hispanic Industry Leadership Award from the International Hispanic Professionals.

He also served on the National Board of Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) that was founded by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in 1957. He was elected to serve on the National Board to preserve and enhance the civil and human rights through non­violence and apply such principles of Dr. Martin Luther King JR. and Mahatma Gandhi.

Now Trustee Patel is facilitating the transition of the hospitality industry to the 21st century by testing, promoting and using various blockchain technologies through complex reservation and payment smart systems. These digital solutions will eventually interact with, what Trustee Patel anticipates to be, hospitality's eco-mobility infrastructure that will primarily provide guests with fleets of wirelessly charged electric and autonomous vehicles available at hotels. Trustee Patel, as an environmentally conscious leader, also promotes energy conservation through smart Solar micro-grids and hotels.

He and his wife, Ela reside in Pensacola FL with their two children and his mother.