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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: Michele Goldberg, Director of Marketing
Greater Springfield Convention and Visitors Bureau
Tel: (413) 755-1344/E-mail: michele@valleyvisitor.com

GSCVB Announces 19th Annual Howdy Awards Finalists

Springfield, MA-- (5/22/13) - The Greater Springfield Convention and Visitors Bureau (GSCVB) named 48 individuals from throughout the Pioneer Valley as finalists for the 2014 Howdy Awards for Hospitality Excellence. The finalists were honored at a reception last night at Hadley Farms Meeting House in Hadley, MA. The awards program, now in its 19th year, was created by the Greater Springfield Convention and Visitors Bureau (GSCVB) to recognize front-line employees in the hospitality industry for providing outstanding service to their guests and customers.

The finalists, who primarily represent a variety of businesses, organizations and activities from throughout Hampden, Hampshire and Franklin counties, now move up to the next level of competition -- judging by a group of recognized industry professionals from outside the region. The winners will then be announced and honored at a gala dinner and awards presentation on Monday, June 9, at the Log Cabin Banquet & Meeting House in Holyoke. On that night, a winner will be named in each of eight categories -- Accommodations, Attractions, Beverage, Food, Public Service, Retail/Business, Transportation and People’s Choice. A Spotlight Award, which recognizes individuals or organizations that have made a significant contribution to the tourism industry in the Pioneer Valley, will also be presented that evening, as will the People’s Choice Award, which is bestowed upon the finalist who earns the most “likes” on the Howdy Awards’ Facebook page.

The Howdy Awards program not only recognizes accomplishments, professionalism and service in the local hospitality industry; it also provides career-enhancing credentials for winning recipients and additional marketing exposure for the businesses and services whose employees excel. Sponsors for the 2014 Howdy Awards for Hospitality Excellence include Yankee Candle Village, Aladco Linen Co., Baystate Health, WWLP TV-22, Eastern States Exposition, Freedom Credit Union, Global Spectrum, The Log Cabin Banquet & Meeting House/The Delaney House, MassLive.com, Massachusetts Convention Center Authority, Performance Foodservice, The Republican, Mix 93-1 and WHYN NewsTalk 560 and Yuengling. Each winner of the seven standard Howdy categories will receive an engraved Howdy Award for Hospitality Excellence, a lapel pin and a gift bag as well as a framed certificate recognizing their accomplishment.

Tickets to the Gala Dinner in June are $65.00 per person, and $625 for a table of ten. For ticket information or more information regarding the Howdy Awards for Hospitality Excellence, call Michele Goldberg at the Greater Springfield Convention and Visitors Bureau at (413) 755-1344.

The GSCVB, an affiliate of the Economic Development Council of Western MA, is a private non-profit destination marketing organization dedicated to promoting Massachusetts’ Pioneer Valley for meetings and conventions, group tours and leisure travel. For more information, visit www.valleyvisitor.com.

Accommodations

Mary Annis Guest Service Agent Hampton Inn Hadley/Amherst
Roxanna Castano Housekeeping Supervisor/Bartender La Quinta Inn & Suites
Jason Gold Front Desk Agent Holiday Inn Express-Ludlow
Jason Jones Chief Engineer Homewood Suites
Phil McBride Bellman/Director of Guest Transpotation Sheraton Springfield Hotel
Kevin Orzechowski Front Desk Clerk The D Hotel & Suites
Sabrina Pretti Front Desk Clerk Hilton Garden Inn
Joyce Wright "At Your Service" Agent Springfield Marriott Hotel
     

Attractions

Harold Bennett Associate Basketball Hall of Fame
Evelyn Farrow Sales Associate Yankee Candle Village
Stefanie Marotte Welcome Center Clerk Springfield Museums
Mallory Seibert Sales Associate Yankee Candle Village
William Vezina Crew Member Bright Nights/Spirit of Springfield
     

Beverage

Liz Edge Bartender Hadley Farms Meeting House
Heidi Holt Bartender Brewmasters Tavern
Heather Lively Bartender The Farm Table/Kringle Candle
Rick Lombardi Bartender Leone's Restaurant
Mary Mercier General Manager Yarde House
Victoria Torti Bartender 30 Boltwood Cafe
     

Food

Luisa Cardaropoli Owner Palazzo Cafe
Brianne Ebel Wedding Banquet Coodinator Hotel Northampton
Kevin Doubleday Sous Chef 30 Boltwood Cafe
Jenna Elliot Server Look Restaurant
Neil Gadbois General Manager Log Cabin Banquet & Meeting House
Nellie Ivasko Server Donovan's Pub
Dan LaFlamme Waiter The Whately Inn
Joanne Sullivan Server Uno Chicago Grill - Holyoke
Stella Matos Store Manager Dunkin
Jodi Brouillette Server Steaming Tender Restaurant
Diane Mead Manager Uno Chicago Grill - Holyoke
Jeremy Medeiros Cook Friendly's
Jenna Pepper Server Fazio's Ristorante and Pizzeria
Lindsay Swasey Server Chandler's Restaurant
     

Public Service

Louis Brault Trash Collector Waste Management
Judy Butcher Receptionist Jewish Community Center
Christine Horne White Street Crossing Guard Springfield Public Schools
Patrick Leahy Police Officer Holyoke Police Dept.-Chief's Office
Donva Montgomery Patient Reservation & Guest Services Baystate Medical Center
Gina Heile Receptionist/Facility Coordinator Accountable Care Associates
     

Retail/Business

Jason Blunt Instructor Roots Gymnastics
Scott Drake Customer Service Associate Atkins Country Market
Kim Lee Manager People's Bank
Rhiannon McDermott Customer Service Representative Lee Premium Outlets
Carolyn Owens Sales Associate Walgreens
     

Transportation

Millie Colon Cashier Mobile
Barbara Eckert Parking Attendant Executive Parking
Ricky Johnson Motorcoach Operator Peter Pan Bus Lines
Janice Webb Travel Agent Emerald City Travel
     

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