Mary Tavernini-Dowling

CEO of the Hospitality House of the Upper Peninsula (HHUP)

Mary brings over 40 years of experience in corporate management, public relations and marketing. She is responsible for the operations, fundraising and management of the Steve Mariucci Family Beacon House and its supporting entities, Gift Well and Coffee for a Cause.

Mary joined the Beacon House organization in 2011 to help launch the U.P. Celebrity Golf Classic fundraiser with Steve Mariucci to keep Beacon House open after major support funding expired. After a successful first event, she went all in and joined the organization full time. In 2013, she oversaw the expansion of the organization with the addition of 21-bed Hospitality Rooms in the hospital, the hospital Gift Shop and Coffee Shops (in the hospital and Peninsula Medical Center) and the cancer patient Wig Salon all becoming part of the organization. Mary was named CEO to oversee the entire organization’s operations while continuing to fundraise for Beacon House.

In 2016, Mary and the HHUP Board of Directors launched a Capital Campaign to build the new Steve Mariucci Family Beacon House next to the new hospital. The campaign reached its goal of $6 million dollars and concluded with the opening of the new Beacon House in January 2022.

Prior to joining HHUP, Mary held numerous executive level positions with national organizations including Cellular One and Bell South. For 9 years, she also owned and operated a full-service advertising agency called “M. Tavernini & Associates, At Your Service” and “LaDolce Video” production company, which she later sold to her most valued employee and work friend, Tony Beres. Mary also created “The Wedding Emporium” which brought together all the components of weddings and major events, as well as serving as communication director for the Michigan State University College of Human Medicine’s Upper Peninsula Campus and Medical Residency program.

Many people in the Marquette community remember Mary from her first job as owner of “The Cat’s Meow” boutique on Third Street. Her passion for non-profit work included serving on the board of directors for the YMCA of Marquette County for many years, helping to raise the funds to build the Y. She also served the community as a Rotarian and held positions on numerous boards prior to taking on the role of CEO of the HHUP.

Mary lives in Marquette with her husband Kevin, a retired Michigan State Police Sargent now working as the Commodore of Marquette’s two marinas. Mary is a proud stepmom to Kevin’s two children, Tara (Ryan) Korslin, a Physical Therapy Assistant and Patrick Dowling, a Civil Engineering graduate from Michigan Tech.