About Me

Rob Hays Ashford is a businessman through and through. He has nearly 20 years of experience operating companies and helping them grow to astronomical heights. His expertise includes 15 years of experience in the real estate industry.

Hays is currently using his decades of expertise as the President and Chief Executive Officer at Ashford Hospitality Trust. He has successfully held this role for more than eight years.

Rob Hays: Current Roles and Duties

Hays' career has been a successful one. He currently holds his most essential business role as the President and Chief Executive Officer of the Ashford Hospitality Trust.

Hays has held numerous roles at the Ashford Hospitality Trust. He is responsible for executing key operational and strategic initiatives. He has also been the company's leader overseeing acquisitions, mergers, refinancing, hedging, divestitures, and more.

In addition to his position as President and CEO, Hays is the Senior Managing Director of Ashford and is a member of the Ashford Trust Board of Directors.

Career History

Rob Hays Ashford dedicates much of his time and energy to the success of Ashford Hospitality Trust. Many of the top moments of his career took place at this company, where he has held numerous executive positions.

Learn more about Hays' career history here:

Investment Banking Analyst at Merrill Lynch from 1999 to 2000

Senior Business Analyst at Dresser, Inc. from 2003 to 2005

Chief Strategy Officer at Ashford Hospitality Trust and Braemar Hotels & Resorts from 2005 to 2020

All these positions led up to Hays' current role as the President and CEO of Ashford Hospitality Trust, where he continues to work full-time. Rob Hays Ashford also serves as the Senior Managing Director for Ashford, Inc. and on the Ashford Hospitality Trust Board of Directors.


Hays attributes much of his success to the quality education he received at Princeton University.

Hays attended Princeton University from 1995 to 1999 and graduated with an A.B. in Politics. At Princeton, he served as the Vice-President of the Colonial Club, the President of the Agape Christian Fellowship, and the Bible Study Leader at Thomas Aquinas Institute.

Hays continued his education at the Pontifical University of the Holy Cross in Rome from 2002 to 2003, where he studied philosophy.

1995-1999: Princeton University

2002-2003: Pontifical University of the Holy Cross

Professional Skills and Experience

Rob Hays' decades of experience in real estate and hospitality helped him acquire countless skills. In addition to being an esteemed leader at his company and beyond, Hays has been praised for his expertise in the following:

corporate finance

financial modeling


capital markets

financial analysis

business strategy


investor relations

Hays' colleagues consider him an excellent problem solver and critical thinker who can turn challenging business or financial situations into profits. His industry knowledge and interpersonal skills are difficult to rival.

Achievements and Accomplishments

Many of Hays' most significant accomplishments link to his career, education, and faith. Hays is also an esteemed athlete who was a four-year starter on the Princeton University Golf Team. He served as the team's captain from 1998 to 1999 and was All-Ivy League in 1996.

Rob Hays Ashford is also a member of the Synod Preparatory Commission. Bishop Edward J. Burns chose just 26 individuals to serve as part of this commission.

The commission members assist Bishop Burns in numerous matters, including organizing and preparing the Synod. They help draw up the Synodal directory and preside over preparatory commission meetings as needed. Hays has always been a man of faith, so his role as just one of 26 members of the commission is a significant honor.

Hays was also proud to be named a "Playmaker" for Stee A. Klein's famous talk show. The show featured him on April 29, 2022, for his role at the Ashford Hospitality Trust, ranging from daily duties to overseeing major company decisions.

Personal Interests and Hobbies

It's easy to only think of business when hearing a name like Hays'. That is likely because he is most famous for his many successes with the Ashford Hospitality Trust. However, Hays has countless interests outside of work that often go unmentioned.

Hays remains faithful and enjoys speaking at Young Catholic Professionals conferences. He served as a Keynote Speaker at the organization's 2022 National Conference and the Executive Speaker Series. Hays volunteers as a speaker for numerous Catholic and business conferences directed toward young people.

Rob Hays Ashford continues to be an avid golfer. He was the Honorary Chairman of the 2017 Bishop's Pro-Life Golf Classic and commonly plays rounds throughout the Dallas-Fort Worth area. He remains a strong supporter of the Princeton University Golf Team and the entire University.

Hays hopes to teach young people to believe in themselves, whether they're striving toward business, educational, religious, or athletic goals. His dedication to all these areas of life led him to his position as the President and Chief Executive Officer of Ashford Hospitality Trust.


Rob Hays Portfolio