March 06, 2007
2006 marked the 30th anniversary of the Ketchikan Visitors Bureau, which was incorporated on January 30, 1976. It is the second oldest visitors' bureau in Alaska. The Anchorage Convention and Visitors Bureau was established in 1975.
The KVB's standing awards and the winners for 2006 include:
The Rainbird Award- presented to the outstanding individual, group or business who has volunteered their time and talents to further the efforts of the Ketchikan Visitors Bureau and the visitor industry in Ketchikan was presented to Mary Bolshakoff, owner of Alaska Traveler Accommodations. Mary was recognized for her assistance to the KVB over the past several years in coordinating accommodations for travel writers, travel trade professionals and the film crew who traveled to Ketchikan last summer to shoot a new video that will be used to market Ketchikan.
The Spirit of Alaska Award- presented to the individual or organization who by their actions, embody the traits of friendliness and service to visitors for which Ketchikan is known was awarded to Karen Lynch, food and beverage director for the Cape Fox Lodge. Karen was nominated because of the effort she and her staff put forth to provide a quality experience for conferences and special events guests, as well as patrons of the hotel's restaurant.
The Heart of the Community Award- recognizes the efforts of an individual or organization within the tourism industry who have demonstrated support for programs that benefit local needs. The award was presented to Rob and Zella Scheer, Sarah Verharen and Erin Swanson of the Great Alaskan Lumberjack Show for their ongoing support for a variety of programs including the Salvation Army, WISH, the 4th of July Logging Show and the Visitor Industry Charity Walk.
The Golden Totem Award- presented to the individual or business that has demonstrated outstanding leadership, new ideas and cooperative efforts in working with Ketchikan's visitor industry was awarded to Norma McGinnes, owner of Latino Tour en Alaska. Norma was nominated "as the first dedicated foreign language tour operator in Ketchikan and possibly southeast Alaska opening a new avenue to visitors whose ability to enjoy Ketchikan due to a language barrier could limit their enjoyment".
Special awards were also presented
Outstanding Service Award to Taquan Air nominated for their commitment to a quality experience for their customers and the highest standards for air safety.
Community Achievement Award to Cruise Line Agencies of Alaska, recognizing the "behind the scenes" service provided to cruise visitors and their families and ships personnel in times of medical emergencies as well as providing quality service to the cruise industry.
2005-2006 KVB board of directors' chair, Katie Montgomery was also recognized for her service at the banquet. Chris Meier, Ketchikan operations manager for Alaska Travel Adventures is the 2007 chair of the board.
Keynote speaker Senator Lisa Murkowski addressed the audience of 120 who attended the banquet, which was held at the Cape Fox Lodge.
RAINBIRD AWARD PAST RECIPIENTS:
SPIRIT OF ALASKA AWARD PAST RECIPIENTS:
Marge Hanger, 1983; Fireboat HV Newell Crew, 1984; Cape Fox Dancers, 1985; Temsco, 1986; June Allen, 1987; Barbara Roper, 1988; Judee Mettler, Erin Malay and Kathy Tallman (SE Stevedoring), 1989; Jan Ross, 1992; Ketchikan General Hospital staff, 1993; Saxman Elders Dorothy Utterberg and Elizabeth Denny, 1994; Don Fisher, 1995; Francis Broderick, 1996; Sherrie Slick, 1997; Pam Leask, 1998; Lois Munch, 1999; Ken and Rebecca Mix, 2000; Ketchikan Seaman's Center, 2001; Princess Tours and Rhonda Bolling, 2002; Johnny Gilson, 2003; The Haida Descendant Dancers (Xáadas Ták'anlang), 2004; Kim Kirby and Greg Thomas, 2005; Karen Lynch, 2006.
GOLDEN TOTEM AWARD PAST RECIPIENTS:
Ollie Hanger, 1979; Paul Breed, 1980; Dolly's House, 1981; Bob Giersdorf, 1982; Gary Larson, 1983; Len Laurance, 1984; Tom Sawyer, 1985; Cape Fox Corporation, 1986; Alaska Airlines, 1987; Mike Feskins, 1988; Waterfall Resort, 1989; Judy Doyon and the UAS Visitor Industry Program, 1992; Lew Williams III, 1993; Carroll Fader, 1994; Jerry and Candi Scudero, 1995; Alaska Cruise Lectures, 1996; NorthWest Cruise Ship Association, 1997; Deer Mtn. Tribal Hatchery and Eagle Center, 1998; Chuck West, 1999; The Great Alaskan Lumberjack Show, 2000; Ketchikan CHARR, 2001; Alaska Amphibious Tours, 2002; Experience Alaska Tours, 2003; Alaska Rainforest Sanctuary, 2004; Cape Fox Tours, 2005; Norma McGinnes, 2006.
SPECIAL AWARD RECIPIENTS:
Over the years the KVB has determined that special awards are warranted for outstanding contributions. While not necessarily awarded annually, here is a list of the recipients of our special awards categories:
Excellence in Tourism: Cape Fox Tours, 1997; Dale Pihlman and Cynthia McNulty, 2000; Seahorse Ventures, 2002; Alaska Canopy Tours, 2005.
Outstanding Achievement Award: Ken and Rebecca Mix, 1995; Spruce Mill Development Corp., 1998; John Kimmel, 2003; The Williams Family & Pioneer Printing, Inc., 2004.
Community Achievement Award: City of Ketchikan, 1998; Roberta "Bobbie" McCreary, 2003.
Heart of the Community Award: Gray Line of Alaska-Ketchikan Division, 1998; Alaska Airlines-Ketchikan Station, 1999; Ketchikan Fire Department, 2000; Randy Steward and the Ketchikan Boat Parade Committee, 2001; Cape Fox Lodge, 2002; Best Western Landing, 2003; Ray Troll, 2004; Tim and Katie Montgomery, 2005; Rob and Zella Scheer, Sarah Verharen and Erin Swanson, 2006.
Outstanding Service Award: To be announced, 2005, Sherrie Slick, 2006; Taquan Air, 2006.
Lifetime Achievement Award: Len Laurance, 2005.
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