• Media Liaison

City honors travel and tourism workforce's best at annual awards; overall, restaurant and hotel

More than 500 people gathered on Wednesday, May 9 at the city's convention center for its annual luncheon and awards ceremony to pay tribute to the backbone of the Virginia Beach hospitality industry, its tourism workforce. The event was held as part of the 2018 National Travel Week, May 6 to 12.

"As one of the major economic engines in Virginia Beach, the tourism industry supports more than 13,000 local jobs," said city publicist Teresa Diaz. "This workforce consists of those who man the frontlines, work behind-the-scenes and operate the many corporate functions required to keep our travel and tourism industry vibrant. Each May, the Virginia Beach Convention & Visitors Bureau hosts a luncheon recognizing and celebrating these amazing tourism representatives. The event is highlighted by an awards ceremony to recognize the 'best of the best' in the industry."

The following hospitality professionals won a 2018 National Travel & Travel award:

Carlos Wilson Lifetime Achievement Award: Brian Sutton - Rockafeller's.

NTTW Public Service Award: Lynn Huneycutt - Virginia Beach CVB.

Volunteer: Maria Harless - Holiday Inn North Beach.

Outside Banquet Catering: Donovan Webb - Distinctive Gourmet.

Transportation: Barrington Mattis - Gold Key | PHR Central Laundry.

Attractions: Ike Owns - IMG.

Retail: David Hand - Taste.

Restaurant Category

Manager: Amanda Connelly - Mission BBQ.

Bartender: Rachel Blake - Gold Key | PHR.

Chef: Ashley Rosado - Holiday Inn North Beach.

Bus Person: Ryan Granneman - Rockafeller's.

Dishwasher: Donald Cornick - Virginia Beach Resort Hotel and Conference Center.

Host/Hostess: Andrew DeCamillis - Tautog's.

Line Cook: Desmond Gordon - Springhill Suites by Marriott.

Prep Person: Yiatza Vargas - Baymont Inn and Suites.

Wait Staff: Shahyar Shahnia - Rockafeller's.

Hotel/Lodging Category

Activities/Spa/Fitness Coordinator: Jonanna Michele - VSA's Ocean Key Resorts.

Banquet Catering: Elgin Bailey - Holiday Inn Virginia Beach Norfolk Hotel and Conference Center.

Clerical/Front Office: Richard Cherry - Virginia Beach Resort Hotel & Conference Center.

Concierge: Walter Jones - Diamond Resorts.

Continental Breakfast Attendant: Aja Perthold - Homewood Suites by Hilton Virginia Beach.

Front Desk: David Bisese - Courtyard by Marriott.

Front Desk: Ken Knight - The Oceanfront Inn.

Housekeeping: Sade Allsbrook - Homewood Suites by Hilton.

Housekeeping: Sharlie Pascua - Homewood Suites by Hilton Virginia Beach.

Laundry: Shirley Hoggard - Virginia Beach Resort Hotel & Conference Center.

Maintenance: George Martill - Doubletree by Hilton.

Sales Manager: Maria Brunner - Holiday Inn Virginia Beach Norfolk Hotel & Conference Center.

Valet: Carl Rossi - Holiday Inn Virginia Beach Norfolk Hotel and Conference Center.

Sun stock image.

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