Marriott International has announced that president and CEO Arne Sorenson will temporarily scale back his duties to facilitate more demanding treatment for pancreatic cancer.
In May 2019, the company announced that Sorenson, 62, had been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and was beginning treatment.
Sorenson, who will remain Marriott’s president and CEO, is expected to step back from full-time oversight of the company for several months.
During this time, he will stay involved in directing the hospitality giant “to the extent practical” and will remain a member of the board of directors, according to a statement by the company.
In consultation with Marriott’s board, Sorenson has tapped two veteran executives of the company to share the responsibility for overseeing the day-to-day operations of its business units and corporate functions during this period, in addition to maintaining their current responsibilities.
Stephanie Linnartz, group president of consumer operations, technology and emerging businesses, will oversee Marriott’s international lodging division, as well as legal, human resources and communications and public affairs.
Tony Capuano, group president of global development, design and operations services, will oversee the company’s US and Canada lodging division and finance.
Both Linnartz and Capuano are longtime members of Marriott’s leadership team, having joined the company in 1997 and 1995, respectively.
Sorenson said: “Since my diagnosis, I’ve been working with a great medical team at Johns Hopkins to treat this cancer.
“While I have worked throughout my treatment to date and plan to remain as engaged in the business as my health allows, the right thing to do for me, my family and the company is to focus on my health.
“I know Stephanie and Tony will work with Marriott’s strong executive team to continue to move the company forward.
“I, along with my family and my medical team, remain optimistic about my prognosis, and I plan to return full-time after the conclusion of my treatments.”
Marriott executive chairman and chairman John Willard Marriott Jr said: “Arne has the full support of the board and the executive team as he takes this time to focus on his health, and our prayers are with him for a speedy recovery.
“Arne has built an excellent executive team. I have every confidence in Stephanie and Tony, and the entire leadership team, to continue to implement our strategy and to not miss a beat running day-to-day operations.”