During the SITE Global Conference in Panama, several members and chapters were recognized for their service and excellence to the SITE community in 2016. Scroll below to learn more about each of the winners.
Through the Chapter of the Year and Chapter Excellence Awards, SITE acknowledges the extraordinary efforts and performance of local chapter leaders and members, as well as recognizes the importance of the SITE Chapter network to support growth and continued success of local initiatives that result in the strenghtening of our incentive travel industry. The full list of Chapter of the Year and Excellence Awards are:
Chapter of the Year:
SITE Canada created and put into practice strategic initiatives to grow, strengthen, and provide added-value to their membership, some of which have been adopted by our global chapter network. With a truly effective and customized membership retention campaign, ten events a year that meet the educational and networking needs of the community, engaging communication and more, this chapter has demonstrated to be a true leader within our network.
Excellence in Education:
SITE Italy surveyed its local members to find what topics they were interested in learning and how they preferred to receive this education. The result was a series of education events both live and online that catered to the specific professional needs of their region - offering a mix of live events and webinars resulted in increased engagement from members near and far.
Excellence in Special Event:
This chapter is proof that great feats can be achieved through creativity and cooperation - surpassing their event goals in fundraising to support local charities, offering dynamic networking for their attendees, and creating sales opportunities for their sponsors. Their signature event has now become an iconic gathering in the region’s industry that brought together 650 attendees in 2015.
Excellence in Membership:
This award recognizes the re-birth of a chapter that faced many challenges specific to their region and are true advocates of incentive travel in their region, promoting the value of SITE membership. It was through the work of relentless leadership that the chapter grew 400% in the past year by adding new events, effective marketing, press coverage and partnering with industry exhibitions.
Member of the Year: The Member of the Year award is presented to a volunteer who has left an indelible mark on SITE throughout the year. This year's winner is Brian Mordecai, Director of Group Sales, Viceroy Hotel Group and Co-Chair of SITE Incentive Summit Americas.
Kevin Forde Spirit Award: The Kevin Forde Spirit Award is given each year to a SITE member who exemplifies the traits that Kevin Forde was known and respected for: generosity of time and energy to those in the industry who needed help or advice; representation of the motivational experiences industry within a professional role endorsing one’s destination; volunteering with SITE and giving back to the SITE global community.
This year's winner is Wichita Villacres, Owner/Director, ECO Destination Management Services and past president of the SITE Florida & Caribbean Chapter.
Richard Ross Past President's Award: Presented by the SITE Past Presidents Council, this award is in memory of SITE Past President and long-time member Richard Ross, who died in the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks in New York City. The award recognizes an individual or organization that has furthered the vision, ideals and ethics of its namesake, and has provided notable contributions and long-term service to SITE and the incentive travel industry.
This year's winner is Martin Lewis, Managing Director, CAT Publications and a member of the SITE Foundation Board of Trustees.
David Riddell Memorial Scholarship: The David Riddell Memorial Scholarship was created in memory of SITE Past President David Riddell to provide an opportunity for worthy individuals to participate in SITE educational programs. The scholarship will fund Global Conference attendence costs up to $2500 for one recipient chosen based on financial need, nomination from a SITE chapter leader, and an interest in the future potential growth of SITE.
This year's scholarship winner is Stephanie Dhima, Sales Manager, Event Partners Ireland.
Please join us in congratulating all of our 2016 award winners!