Bethesda, Maryland-based Marriott International announced Friday that CEO Arne Sorenson has been diagnosed with Stage 2 pancreatic cancer.
Sorenson intends to remain in his role as CEO while undergoing treatment, Marriott said.
Sorenson was diagnosed Wednesday after a series of tests at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore.
“The cancer was discovered early. It does not appear to have spread and the medical team — and I — are confident that we can realistically aim for a complete cure. In the meantime, I intend to continue working at the company I love. Let me make one request, look ahead with me,” Sorenson said in a message to employees.
Sorenson, 60, will start undergoing chemotherapy next week, with surgery planned near the end of 2019.
Sorenson became the first nonfamily member to lead Marriott when he was promoted to chief executive in 2012. He rose through the ranks, starting with Marriott in 1996 as a vice president of business development.
He oversaw Marriott’s $13.6 billion acquisition of Starwood Hotels & Resorts, securing Marriott’s position as the world’s largest hospitality company.
Marriott is also one of the largest employers in the Washington metro, with almost 17,000 local employees and 177,000 worldwide.