James F. Downey

B.S., M.S., Ph.D.
James F. Downey


Phone: 561-237-7856
Fax: 561-237-7768

Office Location

de Hoernle International Center

Professional Profile

Dr. Downey began teaching at Lynn in 1994 as an Associate Professor in the former School of Hospitality, Tourism and Recreation Management. Prior to that, his educational positions include Department Chairman of Hotel, Restaurant and Institutional Management at Drexel University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and he served as Dean of the School of Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Administration at the University of New Haven, in New Haven, Connecticut. He also served as the Associate Dean in the College of Hospitality Management from 2002 until 2009 at Lynn.

His hospitality industry background includes the following positions:

  • Leisure Time Industry Associate, Laventhol & Horwath, Certified Public Accountants, Boston, Massachusetts;
  • Vice President of Development, Commonwealth Hospitality Management Company, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania;
  • Senior Business Consultant, IBM Food Service Consulting Consortium, Raleigh, North Carolina; and
  • President, Keystone Associates, Boynton Beach, FL, Management Consultants for the Hospitality Industry.


  • B.S., Pennsylvania State University
  • M.S., University of Wisconsin-Stout
  • Ph.D., Purdue University

Teaching Philosophy

My teaching philosophy has been and continues to be predicated on sound instructional techniques that provide successful student learning outcomes. I have maintained this philosophy since I came to Lynn. Below is a chronicle of how I adapted this teaching philosophy. I did not choose the hospitality industry, the hospitality industry chose me. My family managed a small hotel in eastern Pennsylvania where I began as a front desk clerk at the age of 13. From that experience, I developed a love of the hospitality industry that eventually drew me into the fields of accounting and lodging development. My desire to share that passion and to help others seek a career in hospitality encouraged me to pursue a career in teaching. I believe learning is best facilitated by an instructor who balances sound theory with solid industry experience. For example, my teaching of hospitality accounting and lodging development is facilitated by my experience working for a hospitality-related public accounting firm and serving as a director of development for a hospitality management company. I actively seek to create a student-centered classroom where students participate in directing their objectives very much where I act as a guide-by-the-side rather than a sage on the stage. I also try to integrate several different methods in my classroom that accommodate my students' various learning styles. For example, I might work in a short lecture, a problem solving exercise or break the class into small groups all in the same class session. I strive to create a classroom environment that is flexible enough to accommodate my students’ needs and I have found that technology, especially computer-mediated communication, can be a valuable tool in creating this environment. On-line discussions via blackboard can allow students who are not comfortable with voicing their opinions orally in the classroom to think through their responses and contribute to the conversation while also providing practice with written communication. I encourage my students to take an active role in the classroom, guiding classroom discussions and curriculum choices, and discovering and using their new knowledge. Clear objectives guide lessons and assignments, and I believe that students should be aware of them and able to determine when they have mastered them, realizing that the development of accounting skills takes time. Ultimately, students should learn to seek new learning experiences and direct their own education, encouraging the life-long learning process.

Teaching Specialties

  • Accounting for Financial Reporting
  • Accounting for Management Decision Making
  • Hospitality Management
  • Event Management
  • Special Topics in Hospitality
  • Special Topics in Event Management

Areas of Scholarship and Professional Practice

Dr. Downey continually writes and publishes juried research papers on hospitality business and management subjects including

  • accounting
  • internships
  • cooperative education
  • teaching strategies
  • case studies
  • hospitality facility planning.


  • Appointed President of the Florida/Caribbean chapter of the International Council on Hotel, Restaurant and Institutional Education, July 2008
  • Selected as Lynn University’s Outstanding Teacher of the Year, May 1999

Curriculum Vitae

DowneyJames_CV.pdf — PDF document, 203Kb
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