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Stars of the Industry Award Winners Announced

January 18, 2018

View photos from the 2018 Stars of the Industry Awards
View photos from the 2018 Lodging Summit and Vendor Expo
 
Oklahoma Hotel and Lodging Association Honors Outstanding Lodging Employees and Properties

The Annual Stars of the Industry Awards was held at the Embassy Suites Norman Hotel & Conference Center on January 16, 2018. This program, presented by the Oklahoma Hotel & Lodging Association, is designed to honor Oklahoma's outstanding hospitality professionals for their service and commitment to the guest service and hospitality industry. Our partners in support of this lodging award program include Auto-Chlor System; Clearwater Enterprises; Cox Business; HD Supply; Heartland; McGregor Insurance Group; STR; Total Beverage Services LLC; United Linen; and US Foods.  

This year, submissions resulted in nearly 40 nominees from properties of all sizes among the ten categories – proof of Oklahoma’s outstanding employees and properties.  Merits and accomplishments were realized for the calendar year 2017. Honorees were each nominated by the owners, General Managers, or Human Resource departments of the recipient's property.

This year’s Stars of the Industry Award recipients are as follows:

Innovation Award
David Davis - OSU School of Hospitality and Tourism, Stillwater

Additional Nominees:
Marriott Conference Center at NCED, Norman

Outstanding Food & Beverage Employee of the Year
Lolita Hewlett - Marriott Conference Center at NCED, Norman

Additional Nominees:
John Aquino - Embassy Suites Norman Hotel & Conference Center
Andrew Banks - Skirvin Hilton, Oklahoma City

Outstanding Front Desk Employee of the Year
Kayla Stone - Hyatt Regency Tulsa Hotel, Tulsa

Additional Nominees:
Diana Casler - Riverwind Hotel, Norman
Sheila Chapman - Marriott Conference Center at NCED, Norman
Kristian Hallford - Hard Rock Hotel & Casino, Catoosa
Carolina Medina-Gonzales - Skirvin Hilton, Oklahoma City
Palmer Ohene-nyako - Embassy Suites Norman Hotel & Conference Center

Janelle Wilson - Holiday Inn Express & Suites Bricktown, Oklahoma City

Outstanding General Manager of the Year-Large Property
Gerald Rappaport - Skirvin Hilton, Oklahoma City

Additional Nominees:
James Cunningham - Hyatt Regency Tulsa Hotel, Tulsa
Antonio Munoz - Embassy Suites Norman Hotel & Conference Center


Outstanding General Manager of the Year, Small Property
Ronnie Krodel - Riverwind Hotel, Norman

Additional Nominees:
Brian Werkman - Holiday Inn Express & Suites Bricktown, Oklahoma City
Sissie Young - Treasure Valley Hotel, Davis


Outstanding Lodging Employee of Year, Large Property
Reynaldo Molina Chavira - Courtyard by Marriott Downtown OKC, Oklahoma City

Additional Nominees:
David Batchelder - Marriott Conference Center at NCED, Norman
Adam Davidson - Hyatt Regency Hotel, Tulsa
Heather Gootee - WinStar World Casino Hotel, Thackerville
Roxanne Kupper - RiverSpirit Casino Resort, Tulsa
Jason Peterson - Embassy Suites Norman Hotel & Conference Center
Thomas Pillow - Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tulsa, Catoosa
Jamie Taliaferro - Skirvin Hilton, Oklahoma City


Outstanding Lodging Employee of Year, Small Property
Linda Wall - Shangri-La Golf Club, Resort and Marina, Monkey Island

Additional Nominees:
Tiffany Bonham - Treasure Valley Hotel, Davis
Janet Ehrlich - Riverwind Hotel, Norman


Outstanding Manager/Supervisor of the Year
Kimberly Young - WinStar World Casino Hotel, Thackerville

Additional Nominees:
William Duren - Marriott Conference Center at NCED, Norman
Jillian Gosselin - Skirvin Hilton, Oklahoma City
Jessa Leal - RiverSpirit Casino Resort, Tulsa
Ashli Steele - Riverwind Hotel, Norman


Outstanding Roomkeeper of the Year
Heather Factor - Riverwind Hotel, Norman

Additional Nominees:
Roberta Bendabout - Hard Rock Hotel & Casino, Catoosa
James Hines - Hyatt Regency Tulsa Hotel, Tulsa
Rebecca Wales - Northwest Inn, Woodward


Outstanding WIL Leader of the Year
Bea Silva - Skirvin Hilton, Oklahoma City

Additional Nominees:
Karen Dunkin - Wyndham Garden Inn Airport, Oklahoma City

Oklahoma award recipients will be submitted to the American Hotel and Lodging Association (AH&LA) to compete in the national Stars of the Industry Awards competition. National winners will be honored during the AH&LA Summit in September 2018.
 
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Join OKWIL for a Community Outreach Project at one of two locations on February 13. Members will volunteer for either Dayspring Villa Women and Children’s Shelter Tulsa or Women’s Resource Center Norman, deep cleaning and organizing the shelters rooms. Let us know if you can join us!
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Join OKWIL from 2:00-4:00pm on March 8 for a seminar on technology in the workplace - Texting, Posting, Emailing, oh my! presented by Kim Strom of Meridian Technology Center. Face-to-face communication, phone conversations and verbal chats have been replaced with texts, posts, tweets, snaps and emails. With so much time spent on our devices, social skills are decreasing, information misunderstanding is increasing and productivity is often taking a turn for the worse.
01.18.18
OH&LA presented the Annual Stars of the Industry Awards, designed to honor Oklahoma's outstanding hospitality professionals for their service and commitment to the guest service and hospitality industry, on January 16, 2018. This year, submissions resulted in nearly 40 nominees from properties of all sizes among the 10 categories.
01.18.18
The OH&LA held its annual Lodging Summit, including the Vendor Expo and Stars of the Industry Awards, on January 16 at the Embassy Suites Norman Hotel & Conference Center - and it was a great day by every measure.
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