Hospitality Superstars Recognized During Annual Luncheon and Awards Ceremony

2018 National Travel & Tourism Week celebration draws record crowd

Thursday, May 10, 2018

​More than 500 people gathered on Wednesday, May 9 at the Convention Center to pay tribute to the backbone of the Virginia Beach hospitality industry, the tourism workforce.

As one of the major economic engines in Virginia Beach, the tourism industry supports more than 13,000 local jobs. 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 (CVB) hosts a luncheon to recognize and celebrate these amazing tourism representatives. The event is highlighted by an awards ceremony to recognize the "best of the best" in the industry.

Congratulations to the following hospitality professionals who 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

About the Virginia Beach Convention & Visitors Bureau (
Where the Atlantic Ocean and the Chesapeake Bay meet, Virginia Beach promises visitors a unique chance to "Live the Life." Nature at its finest, just-caught and just-picked local food and toes-in-the-sand relaxation combine for a soul-satisfying experience. A world-renowned boardwalk, energetic downtown, state-of-the-art Convention Center, abundant parks and waterways, and mild weather give rise to an active lifestyle and flourishing local culture. The Virginia Beach CVB is responsible for promoting year-round leisure, business, meetings and conventions, international and sports travel to Virginia's most populous city. For media information and images, visit Follow Virginia Beach on Twitter at, Instagram at, Facebook at

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