Tourism Richmond Service Awards honour exceptional service

The sixth annual Tourism Richmond Service Awards were held Tuesday night at River Rock Show Theatre. - Martin van den Hemel photo
The sixth annual Tourism Richmond Service Awards were held Tuesday night at River Rock Show Theatre.
— image credit: Martin van den Hemel photo

Richmond’s exceptional customer service professionals were honoured at the sixth annual Tourism Richmond Service Awards held tonight at the River Rock Show Theatre.

“We are blown away by the dedication of the award recipients, nominees, dedicated front-line staff throughout the city and the service-oriented culture that dominates our Richmond-based businesses,” said Ed Gavsie, director of visitor and partner services at Tourism Richmond.

“It’s because of their extra efforts that the Tourism Richmond Service Awards program grows annually—as do the nomination stories we receive.”

The winners were:

•Accommodation: Daphne Liou, River Rock Casino Resort. Also nominated were: Mohamed Ramadan, River Rock Casino Resort; John Lal, Sheraton Vancouver Airport Hotel.

•Attractions: Robert Atkinson, River Rock Casino Resort. Also nominated: Harvinder Jaswal, River Rock Casino Resort; Daniel Cameron, River Rock Casino Resort.

•Retail: Jack Zhong, Chapter’s—Ackroyd, Richmond. Also nominated: Wendy Craig, Scotiabank; Katharyn    Spearman, Express- Richmond Centre.

•Food and Beverage:  Cherie Dubois, Sheraton Vancouver Airport Hotel—Harold’s Bistro. Also nominated: Charles Massion, River Rock Casino Resort; Virginia Aludino, River Rock Casino Resort.

•Transportation and Travel: Mike Cappiello, Sheraton Vancouver Airport Hotel. Also nominated: Connor    Moon, Tourism Richmond Visitor Centre; Lucky Pahwa, ICBC Driver Services.

• Frank Keitsch of Organic Ocean won the Tourism Spirit Award. The award is selected by the staff of Tourism Richmond to an individual or organization that has made a major contribution to the industry.

•Joey Kwan, Aberdeen Centre, won the Tourism Partner Award, which is awarded to an individual or business that has helped Tourism Richmond achieve its objectives.

The annual Extra Mile Award winner was Sheena Brooks of Accent Inn Vancouver Airport. According to her nominator, Brooks always goes above and beyond the call of duty.

“Sheena’s smile and caring towards guests and co-workers makes a person’s day—both guests and her fellow workers.”

Besides Brooks, the other monthly winners who were the finalists in the Annual Extra Mile Award are:

•Mike Harvey—River Rock Casino Resort

•Crystal Lalonde—Fairmont Vancouver Airport

•John Lal—Sheraton Vancouver Airport

•Merceda Tolenada—Hilton Vancouver Airport

•David Li—River Rock Casino Resort

•Shawn Scott—PriceSmart Foods

•Madelyn Turqueza—Marquise Services at YVR

•Balwinder Brar—Days Inn Vancouver Airport

•Stephanie Wong—Vancouver Airport Hilton

•Trina Armour, Mia Yoon, Kathy Nguyen—Marriott Vancouver

•Raeburn MacDougall—Delta Vancouver Airport Hotel.

“Outstanding customer service and the resulting word of mouth is arguably the critical success factor in the tourism industry —quite simply, without customers there would be no business,” said Tourism Richmond CEO Tracy Lakeman.


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