(CNN) – Marriott International, Inc. announced Monday that former GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney had rejoined their board of directors, a position he held prior to his White House bid.
"It is an honor to once again be able to serve in the company of leaders like Bill Marriott and Arne Sorenson and to support the work of the tens of thousands of Marriott associates who make Marriott International the renowned success that it is," Romney wrote in a statement distributed by Marriott.
The move is one of the first signs of Romney returning to his pre-election life. The former GOP nominee will be subletting space at the offices of his son Tagg's investment firm Solamere Capital in Boston, though he won't be joining the firm himself, aides said.
The former candidate has mostly stayed out of the spotlight since his Election Night remarks in Boston. He was spotted taking in the latest installment of the "Twilight" movie franchise with his family, and on Thanksgiving shared a photo with his wife Ann on his official Facebook page.
He met with President Barack Obama and his former running mate Rep. Paul Ryan in Washington last Thursday, but did not speak to reporters afterwards. A statement from the White House said Romney and Obama discussed American leadership abroad, and vowed to stay in touch.
Romney resigned from Marriott's board in January 2011, a year before the first votes in the GOP primary and caucus season. He served on the board beginning in 1993, leaving in 2002 when he served as governor of Massachusetts. He rejoined the board again in 2009.
"We are delighted that Gov. Romney has agreed to rejoin our board, on which he has served with distinction twice before," J.W. Marriott, Jr. wrote in a statement. "We will benefit from his tremendous energy and capability to guide long-term success in an increasingly complex business environment."
Marriott directors received a base pay of $60,000 and $110,000 in Marriott stock in 2011, the most recent year for which pay has been disclosed to the Securities and Exchange Commission. In addition they received $1,250 for every meeting they attended.
Romney has maintained a longtime friendship with members of the Marriott family, who like him are members of the Mormon church and who also own a vacation home on Lake Winnipesaukee in Wolfeboro, New Hampshire.
Speaking during church services at the Wolfeboro branch of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in September, J.W. Marriott Jr. credited Mitt Romney with changing Americans' perceptions about Mormonism.
"That's a great tribute to Mitt and Ann and their family for living such an exemplary life," Marriott, the head of the hotel chain, told the congregation gathered in the picturesque New Hampshire hamlet. "Now that we're out of obscurity, everybody is looking at us and saying, 'Are you as good as the Romneys?'"
The Romney and Marriott families have a long-standing friendship. Mitt Romney's father, former Michigan Gov. George Romney, named his son Willard Mitt Romney after J. Willard Marriott, the family's patriarch.
Romney's association with the company was the subject of Democratic criticism during the general election campaign. Obama's team hurled charges – pegged to an editorial on CNN.com - that Romney was involved with the reporting of a $70 million fictional tax loss when he served on Marriot's board in the nineteen-nineties.
While Romney did not face criminal charges, unlike others linked to the scandal, the authors of the editorial wrote "his endorsement of this stratagem provides insight into Romney's professional ethics and attitude toward tax compliance obligations."
CNNMoney's Chris Isidore and CNN's Jim Acosta and Rachel Streitfeld contributed to this report.
@ John the Historian....your semi-literacy coupled with your venom makes you a totally unpleasant tool.
Wow John the historian what did mormons do to you? If it sounds like a bigot then more than likely it is a bigot.
"George Romney, named his son Willard Mitt Romney after J. Willard Marriott" No surprise that they handed him this lucrative position, then. But he didn't hand them the tax breaks they paid him for, so he's going to be on the list for a while.
how did mitt like his white turkey chili for lunch at the white house, did have a nice piece of humble pie for desert ?
Debbie yep they help each other when they can. But so does LULAC, NAACP. and other groups all across the country. Are they wrong are is it just because these men are white and mormon?
Son of Boss! Son of Boss! Son of Boss! Oops I was thinking about the movie Problem Child when they were calling Jr. Son of Dork.
As for the person that said they never heard of it before, you can thank CNN. They ran one tiny article about it and whenever I tried to talk about it, my posts were deleted.
Willard was a crook from WAY back, but FOX lite aka CNN, didn't want us to know that.
For liberals who claim fruits of not their labor as their own it is not enough just to have somebody lose.They need to spit on that person and step and break something.Well, CNN is good positioned here for that purposes.
Not even one story about Obamas wasting our money with army of personal assistants and millions of dollars for vacations we have to pay for.
Ignorant press supports ignorant people in power and help ignorant people come out and vote for them.
I find it unusual, in the above picture, Romney is carrying his own bags. Is he too cheap to tip the bellman?
No doubt that rates will now rise for Marriott economy accommodations, but will remain the same for luxury suites.
You know what they say? Stick with what you know.
Maybe he'll use the same strategy he had for the US. Just have Marriott lower their nightly rates so much, that it encourages more and more business and guests. Lets see if that works in the private sector (Marriott = Motel 6).
"Hmmm, now how can I destroy Marriott and get even richer doing it?" Good riddance to bad rubbish.
I'm sure we're all waiting with bated breath for the next episode of "As the Willard Turns".
Right back to hob knobbing with the elite I see. Can't you just see him sitting around a big table with other high rollers laughing at the poor working Joes and figuring out new ways to separate them from their money? What a guy!
a new reason to steer clear of Marriott.
Lower wage employees at the hotels better get used to being refered to as "you people".
I'm confused. Are they planning on outsourcing more jobs or trying another tax shelter scheme?
So how did Mitt dodge an indictment? Did he just tell the investigators that he had just retired(retro-active to just before the fraud)? He was either involved or it was another job where he was getting paid to not be there.
Roof Dog Romney missed his chance to tie America to his car and drive us off somewhere dark.
So, how much do you tip at chambermaid?
Wow Bill went to my high school Archbishop Carroll High ,in DC and now that loser mitt is working for him??? Ughhhhhh.
I'll never stay at another Marriott. Romney will never get a penny from me. Interestingly, Chris Matthews wife works for Marriott too. Wonder if their paths will ever cross.
We wish you all the best, Mr. Romney!
I heartily encourage all Marriott service job employees to show their appreciation when Mitt comes to town. Leave a little present for him hidden in his vegetables.
Do you think that this means that the rates will go through the roof at all Marriott owned hotels/motels/inns?
I mean I don't think that the 2%ers that backed the Mormon Moron are going to take that $1Billion dollar investment loss laying down...so to speak. Do you?
Good riddance to Willard. Is Anne still in therapy or is the family just caucasing around her during her time of loss?