RHI’s Sociable City InterviewS series compiles insights from thought leaders about the social economy and life at night.

They will each join in discussions at the 2021 Sociable City Virtual Summit

john samuel

CEO & Cofounder

ABLR 360



john samuel shares impacts on the disabled community

The disabled community has benefitted in unexpected ways from the COVID-19 pandemic. John Samuel, Co-Founder and CEO of ABLR, describes how the shift from in-person dining to take-out resulted in greater digitalization of menus, accessibility to new cuisines via app, and home delivery services.  However, COVID-19 has also created new barriers for the blind and visually impaired community.

John envisions an inclusive future where city planners consider the challenges faced by the disabled community and incorporate ways to make it more accessible and friendly to differently abled communities.

Listen to the full interview if you have interest in accessibility!

Robert saltz discusses Alcohol and Sociability

Robert Saltz brings decades of experience leading research studies on the effectiveness of environmental approaches to reducing risk and alcohol-related harm, especially in bars, restaurants and other venues serving alcohol. This includes responsible beverage service (RBS) training and policy, dram shop (venue) liability and college campus parties.

His association with an international network of prevention advocates and researchers, especially in his work in social settings and risk on college campuses.

In this interview he shares his perspectives on how alcohol consumptions and attitudes are shifting, and how policy makers will work in a new environment post pandemic.

Listen to the full interview if you have interest in RBS research!

Shawn Townsend


Mayor’s Office of Nightlife & Culture

Washington, DC




Shawn Townsend was  recently appointed by Mayor Muriel Bowser as the Director of the Mayor’s Office of Nightlife and Culture in Washington, D.C.

DC was on a winning streak in nightlife achievements prior to the pandemic – from declaring “go go” the city’s official music to releasing an economic study on nightlife. After a team attended RHI’s Sociable City Summit March they launched into action to coordinate meaningful relief for the hospitality industry. From proactive policy to better communication with nightlife businesses, DC agencies have stepped up to the plate to help the city’s severely impacted nighttime economy.

Listen to the full interview how a "night mayor" builds alliances for progress!

john Bodnovich

Executive Director

American Beverage Licensees

Bethesda, MD


As chief executive of this non-profit trade association, Bodnovich engages stakeholders from across the United States to address common concerns and issues, influence federal legislation, and represent members through public relations and strategic communication. He continually monitors business, regulatory, and social environments to ensure appropriateness and effectiveness of messaging while enhancing  members’ reputations as responsible, vital members of the community.

In this interview he shares how he envisions the future of the hospitality and nightlife industry and what his members are doing to cope with impact from COVID.

Listen to the full interview for background on ABL and John's future vision!



Chicago Business Affairs and Consumer Protection



rosa ESCAREÑO Showcases chicago's unique alliance process

Rosa EscareÑo brings 20 years of experience leading large scale agency reform, operations management, communications strategy, and public/government engagement. Chicago's Entertainment Venue Team has served as a template for cities throughout the world uniting police, fire, alcohol regulatory, and health departments for compliance and education.

In this interview she shares the evolution of this unique interagency team working in collaboration with hospitality businesses to define fair and efficient guidelines and policy reform to assist dining and entertainment businesses operate during COVID-19.

Listen to the full interview for background on Chicago's approach!

philip kolvin

Former Chair
London Nighttime Commission

2020 Keynote


Philip Kolvin has an illustrious career in the UK’s nightlife and broader nightlife ecosystem. He is a barrister representing dining and entertainment venues who helped develop the 24/7 licensing legislation in 2003. He served as chair of the Best-Bar-None venue safety assessment process and was appointed by Mayor Sadiq Khan as the first chair of the London Nighttime Commission and author of London's 24 Hour Vision.

In the interview, Kolvin predicts how our post-pandemic socializing patterns will be forever changed. Daylife (socializing during the day) just might become the new nightlife.

Listen to the full interview for more fascinating ideas!



conducted six  interviews  at the 2020 Sociable City Summit in Seattle with thought leaders from diverse perspectives and backgrounds.

Each shared their personal history and role in programs and strategies on nighttime management.

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businesses and communities to plan safe and vibrant places to socialize. ©2018 Responsible Hospitality Institute