NCRLA’s annual award ceremony celebrates North Carolina’s top hospitality industry professionals
Raleigh, N.C. (April 19, 2022) – The North Carolina Restaurant and Lodging Association (NCRLA), the voice of North Carolina’s restaurant, foodservice and lodging industry, hosted its annual 2022 Stars of the Industry awards ceremony last night.
The award recipients were recognized during a ceremony at the Washington Duke Inn & Golf Club in Durham.
At a time when restaurants, hotels and bars are doing their best to respond to labor shortages, supply chain issues and recover from the COVID-19 pandemic, the Stars of the Industry awards afforded North Carolina’s hospitality community a chance to reflect and honor the selfless contributions and stories of inspiration from within the industry. Award recipients were selected based on their exemplary service, leadership, innovation and dedication to the restaurant and lodging industries.
Four members of the North Carolina General Assembly, Sen. Paul Newton, Sen. Kirk deViere, Speaker of the House Tim Moore and Rep. Jason Saine, were recognized for their leadership and exceptional support of the hospitality industry and the policies included in NCRLA’s Blueprint for Revival of the Hospitality Industry. Their support resulted in the largest investment to date in the nation in the revitalization of the hospitality industry through the Business Recovery Grant Program.
“The challenges keep coming, but our leaders in the hospitality industry continue to find ways to rise above it with their service and commitment to keep our businesses up and running,” said NCRLA President and CEO Lynn Minges. “We are so proud to recognize the hardworking men and women on the front lines that keep a smile on their face despite all that they have overcome in the last few years.”
Among the honorees recognized were Vinay Patel, President of SREE Hotels in Charlotte, who took home the Griff & June Glover Award for Distinguished Service and Tim Goss, owner/franchisee of several Firehouse Subs in Charlotte, who was awarded the Ken Conrad Award for Service to the Community. In addition to running their businesses, they spent much of the last year protecting and advancing issues related to the hospitality industry across the state.
The 2022 NCRLA Stars of the Industry award recipients are:
- Restaurateur of the Year: Giorgios Bakatsias, Giorgios Hospitality Group
- Restaurant Managers of the Year: James Holcomb, Washington Duke Inn & Golf Club; Jim McGovern, Angus Barn
- Restaurant Employees of the Year: Sarah Cooper, Burke Manor Inn & Pavilion; Seth Wilson, Heirloom Restaurant; Glaziela Mendonca, Herons at The Umstead Hotel and Spa; Bonnie Davis, Biscuitville
- Lodging Operator of the Year: Ian Sauer, Summit Hospitality Group
- Lodging Managers of the Year: Lee Stell, The Umstead Hotel and Spa; Nicole Ebersole, Parks Hospitality
- Lodging Employees of the Year: Zhongwhen Sui, The Umstead Hotel and Spa; Vera Cobbs, Marriott SouthPark; Carl Stuck, DoubleTree by Hilton Asheville Downtown
- Hospitality Supplier of the Year: Andy Clark, US Foods
- Hospitality Champions of the Year: Sen. Paul Newton, Sen. Kirk deViere, Speaker of the House Tim Moore, Rep. Jason Saine
- Griff & June Glover Award for Distinguished Service: Vinay Patel, SREE Hotels
- Ken Conrad Award for Service to the Community: Tim Goss, Firehouse Subs
- Lifetime Achievement Award: R.B. Fitch, Fearrington House Inn & Restaurant
The emcees for the night were Max Trujillo and Matt Weiss of the NC Food & Beverage Podcast.
The evening was made possible thanks to dedicated sponsors, including Presenting Sponsor US Foods; Silver Sponsors Ecolab, Employers and United Healthcare; Bronze Sponsors Pepsi, Atlas Productions and Meetings on Cue; Registration Sponsor Insurance People; Wine Sponsors Shelton Vineyards and Tryon Distributing; Cocktail Sponsors Chemist Spirits, Sutler’s Spirits and Fainting Goat Spirits; and Beer Sponsors Ponysaurus Brewing, Carolina Brewery and Fullsteam.
Interviews available upon request and photos are available via the online media kit. For more information about the 2022 NCRLA Stars of the Industry, visit www.ncrla.org/stars.
The North Carolina Restaurant & Lodging Association (NCRLA) serves to advance and protect the interests of more than 20,000 businesses that employ 11 percent of the state’s workforce and generate more than $27.3 billion in sales annually. Learn more at www.ncrla.org
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