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Carol Dover, '78 Hospitality Management

Carol DoverTitle: President/Chief Executive Officer
Company: Florida Restaurant and Lodging Association
Location: Tallahassee, FL

Carol B. Dover has served as President/CEO of the more than 10,000 member Florida Restaurant and Lodging Association (FRLA) since July of 1995. Dover is a professional association manager, a lobbyist, a former government insider, and a Florida State University Dedman School of Hospitality graduate with a degree in Hotel and Restaurant Management.

After graduating from Florida State University in 1978, Dover accepted the position of Assistant Director of the Beer Industry of Florida. This position familiarized her with the rules, regulations and tax laws associated with the beverage industry – information which has been beneficial in her role with FRLA.

In 1989, Dover moved inside the halls of the Florida Capitol and was appointed Deputy Chief of Staff, Executive Office of the Governor, serving under the Martinez administration. As Bob Martinez’s Deputy Chief of Staff, Dover was responsible for the Governor’s appointments, served as his spokesperson, and represented his administration before the Florida Legislature.

Dover’s other professional accomplishments include positions at the Department of Business and Professional Regulation Director of the Division of Hotels and Restaurants, the first woman to serve as Chief of the Bureau of Fire Prevention, State Fire Marshall’s Office, and President/CEO of the Florida Outdoor Advertising Association.

As the FRLA’s President/CEO, Dover works to protect, educate, and promote the diverse interests of Florida’s hospitality industry before the Florida Legislature and lobbying against unfair government regulation. The industry represents a $76.1 billion industry, 23% of Florida’s economy, $4.6 billion in sales tax revenue, and nearly 1.1 million employees, making it the state’s number one industry. 

Dover serves as a member of the Board of Directors for the National Restaurant Association, National Restaurant Association Education Foundation, Council of State Restaurant Associations, International Society of Hotel Association Executives, VISIT FLORIDA, Florida Tourism Commission, Florida TaxWatch and the Florida Horse Park.

On opening day of the 2003 Legislative Session, Dover was diagnosed with breast cancer and courageously fought to beat the cancer. Dover, a native of Orlando, is married and has three children and three grandchildren. In her spare time, she enjoys outdoor activities including dressage riding and running.



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