RHI staff and consultants provide:

  • An independent, impartial perspective

  • Skillful experience in facilitation and documentation

  • Extensive knowledge of best practices

  • On-site, phone and real-time webinar consultation and training

Responsible Hospitality Institute

RHI brings decades of leadership in identifying trends and gathering solutions to many of today's opportunities and challenges in cities throughout the world. RHI's early advocacy defined standards on responsible beverage service training. RHI's current development of guides for college communities, public safety and policing agencies, nightlife social venues and development of an entertainment and music economy provides unmatched access to resources and best practices in the nighttime economy.

Jim Peters is Founder and President of the Responsible Hospitality Institute (RHI) and oversees the development of programs, publications and events. As a consultant for dozens of cities and speaker at conferences worldwide, Peters offers comprehensive insights on trends and effective strategies on managing hospitality zones and nighttime economies. Peters has overseen the evolution of RHI from its founding in 1983, spearheading an international movement to raise awareness of the responsibility of bartenders and servers in preventing drunk driving, to RHI’s current role as a leading resource to cities worldwide on development of a safe and vibrant nightlife and social economy.

Alicia Scholer is RHI's Associate Director. She oversees special projects and is responsible for project management, content writing, marketing strategy and social media management. Since she began in 2005, she has developed a variety of educational publications, resources for urban planners and an online learning curriculum for college communities with nightlife. Scholer brings a detailed portfolio of best practices on nighttime economy management and collaborative relationships with a global network of experts and technicians.

Marjorie Ferrer serves as RHI's Project Associate and has extensive experience working with all aspects of redeveloping downtowns and small towns, outlining strategies and tactics that have proven successful in redevelopment of Downtown Delray Beach for the past two decades. Her working career has armed her with retail experience as a Buyer at Jordan Marsh for 20 years, and tourism experience as Assistant Manager for Miami Seaquarium for 5 years, prior to joining the Delray Beach team.  As Executive Director for the Downtown Development Authority in Delray Beach, she understood the importance of gathering data which allowed the economic successes of the DDA District to be measured and utilized.  These efforts included pedestrian counts, retail and restaurant sales reports from the State Department of Revenue and the increase in property value within the district. 

Technical Experts

RHI brings a team of technical experts to assist in orienting your city's stakeholders to potential benefits of a comprehensive approach to becoming a sociable city with a safe and vibrant nighttime economy. They can review your current policies and practices and work with RHI staff in building consensus among Action Teams for an Action Plan for transformation inclusive of all perspectives and interests.  

Jocelyn Kane is the Executive Director of the San Francisco Entertainment Commission (SFEC). The SF Entertainment Commission was created in 2003 as an experiment in nightlife regulation and promotion. It was created by popular referendum on the 2002 SF Ballot, and has transformed into the best example of how a large vibrant city can maintain its valuable nightlife without over burdening it with regulation. In short, the Commission is made up of 7 appointees who each represent stakeholders involved with nightlife: neighbors, industry, public health, law enforcement, and urban planning. Supporting the Commission is a staff of six people.

Elizabeth Peterson-Gower is CEO and founder of Elizabeth Peterson Group, Inc. (EPG), Elizabeth Peterson­Gower oversees day to day operations of the land use consultancy, provides land use expertise, and serves as the principal visionary. Elizabeth has facilitated the development of over 1600 restaurants, bars, theaters, and mixed­use buildings in historic and complex urban environments. Passionate about community development in historic and urban neighborhoods, Elizabeth is devoted to creating positive live/work/play environments by returning historic buildings to their full vitality and reactivating street life through captivating hospitality, retail, and commercial development. In addition to her land use expertise, Elizabeth has owned and operated several Los Angeles clubs and restaurants.  

Paul Seres owns and operates several NYC Nightlife Venues and restaurants in Manhattan. He co-chairs the licensing committee for the Manhattan Community Board 4, which serves Chelsea and Hell’s Kitchen area in Manhattan. As President of the New York Nightlife Association, Paul helped create the Nightlife Best Practices Guidelines in conjunction with the NYPD. After serving as President of the New York Nightlife Association, in 2012 Paul became a founding trustee of the New York City Hospitality Alliance, a New York City based trade association and lobbying organization that represents the bars, cafes, lounges, nightclubs and destination hotels that make up the hospitality economic engine for the city

Shain Shapiro directs Sound Diplomacy, the leading global advisors on music cities. Sound Diplomacy provides music strategy and research to cities and governments. Shapiro also co-founded the Music Cities Convention - the first music conference dedicated to music industry development and city issues - consulted with UK Music, the European Parliament, and the Arts Council; delivered a TEDx talk on the importance of music to cities; and spoken at over 50 industry events. All these accomplishments have established him as one of the Top 10 Creative Entrepreneurs in Britain. 

 John Thayer retired as a Lieutenant with the Santa Barbara Police Department after 31 years in public safety.  His extensive tactical and special event management experience includes liaison to the U.S. Secret Service when the Western White House was in Santa Barbara.  To meet the challenges of a growing local nightlife scene, he conducted a nationwide survey and selected site visits, resulting in policies, officer selection criteria and training specific to entertainment district policing and nightlife disorder management. As the Safety and Security Manager at the Santa Barbara Bowl concert venue for many years, John oversees contract police, medical and security resources, as well as artist, guest and neighborhood relations for the popular, historic venue.   John has worked with a number of police agencies around the country to assist with the development of contemporary deployment strategies and training specific to entertainment district safety and a featured speaker at conferences in the U.S. and Canada.


RHI Brings Nightlife Solutions to Your City

Benefits of RHI Services

Overview of RHI Services

Frequently Asked Questions

RHI Staff and Consultants


Client Cities

Project Summaries

Video Testimonials (YouTube)

Orlando Press Release Video (YouTube)


"RHI has given us a blueprint to take forward. This project has helped us recognize nightlife as an economy to nourish.
We want to handle sociability in a multi-faceted way – not just through law enforcement – but as a community
planning process that engages hospitality owners."
Kevin Acklin, Chief of Staff to Pittsburgh Mayor William Peduto


Responsible Hospitality Institute

Contact Us    831.469.3396

RHI is a nonprofit organization founded in 1983 with a mission to assist businesses and communities to plan safe and vibrant places to socialize. RHI's Sociable City events create an organized opportunity to connect and share information with peers and access resources from RHI.  © 2017 Responsible Hospitality Institute