Welk Resorts CEO Honored with the American Resort Development Association’s Circle of Excellence Lifetime Achievement Award

Jason Gamel ARDA Jon Fredricks CEO of Welk Resorts

Jon Fredricks, CEO of Welk Resorts, was honored with the 2021 American Resort Development Association’s Circle of Excellence Lifetime Achievement Award during an awards ceremony this month that also recognized Welk Resorts’ customer service and activities programs for excellence.

ARDA bestows its ACE Lifetime Achievement Award each year on an individual whose leadership, professionalism, creativity, reliability, quality standards and ethics are demonstrated in an outstanding body of work.

With his roughly 30 years of leadership and service to Welk Resorts and the vacation ownership industry, Fredricks has led Welk Resorts as its CEO since 2014 and president since 1999. He has also served as chair and a member of the ARDA board of directors, a director of the ARDA International Foundation (AIF) board and a member of various industry committees or task forces over his career.

As the grandson of Welk Resorts’ famous founder and namesake, television bandleader Lawrence Welk, Fredricks leads with the same humility and humanity as both his grandfather and his uncle, Larry Welk, who preceded Fredricks as CEO.

Fredricks oversaw Welk Resorts’ expansion into Colorado with the 2020 opening of The Ranahan by Welk Resorts in Breckenridge; new properties in Northstar Village at Lake Tahoe; and creation of the Experiences Collection by Welk Resorts, a curated group of 16 high-quality resorts available to Welk Owners at no additional cost in destinations like Hawaii, Arizona and Florida.

Earlier this year, Welk Resorts and Marriott Vacations Worldwide Corporation announced plans for Welk Resorts to join the MVW portfolio. The transaction closed in April, and Fredricks continues to lead Welk Resorts during the company’s integration with the MVW group of companies.

“It has been one of my great joys in life to have worked in this dynamic industry for over three decades, side-by-side with innovative and talented associates to improve our services, products and systems for our guests, Owners and Members,” said Fredricks. “To say 2020 presented us with some unexpected challenges would be an understatement. I am so proud to see associates throughout Marriott Vacations Worldwide also recognized for their hard work, resilience and unwavering dedication over the past year.”

“We couldn’t be happier for Jon to receive this well-deserved recognition. We have served together on ARDA’s Executive Committee for many years, and I have the utmost respect for all he has accomplished in the industry. We are also so proud to now have Welk Resorts be an important part of our company and we’re excited for the future,” said Steve Weisz, chief executive officer of MVW.

Prior to his career in the family business, Fredricks worked in commercial lending with Union Bank. He earned his bachelor’s degree in urban planning from the University of California, San Diego and is an American Hotel & Lodging Association Certified Hotel Administrator and an ARDA Registered Resort Professional. In the community, Fredricks has served on the Cal State University San Marcos Foundation as well as on the Lawrence Welk Family Foundation boards.

Also recognized with 2021 ARDA Awards were the Welk CARES Program, which received an ACE Excellence in Customer Service award. The program, which was quickly rolled out in response to COVID-19, was created to guide the brand’s proactive customer communications — answering questions and providing policies to address the pandemic’s impact, and ensuring Owners, Members and guests felt valued and appreciated, even during the hardest of times. The ACE Award is an honor bestowed upon those that have attained the highest level of excellence and whose accomplishments and dedication drive the industry to new heights.

Welk Resorts’ INSPIRED For You activities program and team also won an ARDA Award for its pandemic-driven innovations and pivots, which allowed Owners and guests to continue making the most of their vacation experiences through online reservations and fun, socially-distanced activities.

About Welk Resorts

Welk Resorts got its start in 1964 when beloved television bandleader Lawrence Welk bought a motel and nine-hole golf course north of San Diego. Married for 61 years, Welk and his wife Fern knew that one of the best ways to stay healthy and build bonds was through the shared experience of vacations. Today, Welk Resorts continues to be family-owned and operated and has grown to seven quality vacation resorts. These include Welk Resorts in San Diego, Palm Springs, and Lake Tahoe, Calif.; Branson, Mo.; Cabo San Lucas, Mexico; and Breckenridge, Colo. In addition, Welk Resorts’ Platinum Points Owners have access to the RCI Exchange Portfolio of over 4,300 resorts in 110 countries, as well as the Experiences Collection, a portfolio of 16 additional vacation resorts including Four Seasons, Disney Vacation Club, and Fairmont properties in Hawaii, Arizona, Florida, New Mexico, and more.

For more, visit www.welkresorts.com.