Best Western International, Inc., operator of the Best Western Hotels & Resorts brand, operates about 4,100 hotels and motels. The chain, with its corporate headquarters in Phoenix, Arizona, operates 2,163 hotels in North America. The brand was founded by M.K. Geurtin in 1946. David Kong is the president and CEO of Best Western, and Dorothy Dowling is the chief marketing officer. In 1964, Best Western took the first step towards global expansion when Canadian hotel owners joined the system. Best Western then expanded to Mexico, Australia, and New Zealand in 1976. In 2002, Best Western International launched Best Western Premier in Europe and Asia. (The other hotels in the chain were known as Best Western.) In 2011, the chains branding system-wide changed to a three-tiered system: Best Western, Best Western Plus, and Best Western Premier. Since it no longer operates under a single brand, Best Western concurrently modified its slogan in 2011 from "the worlds largest hotel chain" to "the worlds largest hotel family."