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10/11/04 - Bangor Area Employees Announced Stars

10/12/2004

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Press Contact information: Sara Brazer Brazer Communications (860) 354-5260 Greg Dugal, Executive Director Maine Innkeepers Association (207) 865-6100 LOCAL BANGOR AREA EMPLOYEES ANNOUNCED AS 2004 STARS OF THE (HOSPITALITY) INDUSTRY Freeport, ME – October 11, 2004 – The Maine Innkeepers Association (MEIA), a leading provider of information and support to the lodging and tourism industry of Maine, last month announced the winners of its 2004 Stars of the Industry Awards at a luncheon held at the Harraseeket Inn in Freeport. Awards were given to 48 recipients in five categories. Four of those winners were from the Bangor area. The following winners were announced as “Front Desk/Guest Service Employee of the Year”: Susan Savage, University Inn, Orono ~ Susan Savage has worked at the University Inn for 9 years. In 2002, she started working at the front desk, while maintaining her role of Supervisor of the housekeeping staff. “Susan allows me the security of knowing that all aspects of the business are covered when she here, which allows me a balanced lifestyle with my two young children. She loves the business as she would her own, and does absolutely anything and everything that needs to be done, in order to ensure our success. They say that all employees are replaceable. Honestly, Susan is not,” boasts Management, University Inn. Mary O’Connor, Riverside Inn, Bangor ~ Known for her love of the industry and Maine, Mary O’Connor is known by her peers for treating guests with equal courtesy and charm, and shows a genuine interest in their visit – she has more guests return overnight or stop in to say "hi" than any other employee does. “Mary is a versatile, forthright, honest, well-rounded, enthusiastic employee who has made a difference in the lives of many by her professionalism and her compassion. She is the epitome of the Maine spirit, work ethic and values and is an ideal ambassador for tourism,” says Management, Riverside Inn. -more- The following winner was announced as “Maintenance & Groundskeeping Employee of the Year”: Robert Schinck, Econo Lodge, Bangor ~ Robert Schinck joined the Econo Lodge in 1990 as the Assistant Manager, and became General Manager when ownership changed. In 1996 he requested to be moved over to supervise Maintenance. Schinck served in the military for 20 years including a tour in Vietnam. “Bob has saved the Econo Lodge thousands of dollars, doing jobs most hotels would need to hire a general contractor for. He is a true asset and a star of the industry,” boasts Management, Econo Lodge. Mike Kelley, Best Western Black Bear Inn, Orono ~ Mike Kelley is known at the hotel for stepping beyond the boundaries of his own job title…he is willing to help wherever he is needed – recently a scheduling error left the hotel without a cook to prepare a pre-game meal for a team preparing to play University of Maine. By the time anyone got to the kitchen, Mike was already there with the meal well under control and the team never knew the difference. Kelley is also a successful canoe and kayak racer. “The hotel has received the Governor’s Award for quality excellence every year since Mike has been our maintenance man. Since he is the only maintenance person on staff, I give him total credit for our success. This is the second time that the Maine Innkeepers Association has hosted the Stars of the Industry Awards, and it had enormous response, with all types of lodging members - B&Bs, hotels, inns, motels and resorts - responding with nominations. There were 48 Stars of the Industry being honored, each best representing the quality, service and spirit of hospitality, and demonstrating exemplary professionalism, exceptional service, outstanding personal performance and commitment to their property and guests. In addition to the keepsake awards program, each employee received a special Star of the Industry t-shirt, a certificate of recognition and a unique laser engraved Star of the Industry Maine-made award. “It is wonderful to be able to honor those people who are behind the scenes in our industry – they are really what make hospitality tick in Maine.” said Greg Dugal, Executive Director, Maine Innkeepers Association. “Their dedication, loyalty, and kindness all add to their professionalism, and make us proud to be an association that represents them,” he continued. About the Maine Innkeepers Association The Maine Innkeepers Association, a leading provider of tourism information to both Maine’s lodging industry and its visitors, represents nearly 800 B&Bs, camps, cottages, hotels, inns, motels and resorts across Maine, and their suppliers. Through communication, education, promotion and government affairs, the Association helps its members achieve prosperity and deliver a quality product to the consumer. Maine Innkeepers Association is located in Freeport, ME and can also be found at www.maineinns.com. ###

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