Nexion Honors Top Advisors, Suppliers at CoNexion 2019

Nexion honored its top members and supplier partners at the recent CoNexion 2019 conference, which took place in Orlando last week. 

Rising Star Award

Rosie Stermer, owner of Pegasus Travel Advisors, was named Nexion’s 2019 Rising Star, an award that honors a new-to-the-industry Nexion member travel advisor who has shown significant potential for long-term success. 

Stermer joined Nexion Travel Group a year ago, at the same time she opened her travel consultancy, which is based in Silverthorne, CO. In that year, she actively pursued and completed numerous supplier certifications and attended Nexion Travel Group’s Agent Essentials and Groups educational events, Nexion said. She also participated in the NEXstart Lite program. Before entering the travel industry, Stermer worked in business administration and consulting for over 20 years.  

Ambassador Award

Elizabeth Caran, owner of Outlander Travel in Cary, NC, received Nexion’s 2019 Ambassador Award, which is given to a Nexion member who represents the pinnacle of business success, leadership, mentoring, and promotion of the travel industry. The Ambassador Award recipient is also a Nexion Travel Group member who makes valuable use of the host agency’s programs, tools and preferred suppliers, Nexion said. 

Caran has owned her independent travel agency since 2012. She has been a member of Nexion Travel Group for seven years and has 12 subagents working under her, and she holds an Accredited Cruise Counselor designation from Cruise Lines International Association.

An active member of Nexion Travel Group, Caran serves on the Nexion Travel Group Advisory Board, Nexion said. She also regularly attends Nexion Travel Group education and training events, including the organization’s annual CoNexion conference, and encourages her subagents’ attendance at Nexion educational events that can help them build their business. She also serves as co-leader of her local Nexion Networks and is a multi-year recipient of Nexion Travel Group’s Circle of Excellence sales award.

Member Awards

Nexion also announced the winners of its four member awards: Networks Leader of the Year, Mentor Recognition Award, Social Pro Award and NexionTownie of the Year

Nexion Travel Group members gather together regularly in their local communities to form a “Nexion Network.” Led by a volunteer leader, each network is responsible for setting their monthly agendas, arranging speakers and topics. The Nexion Networks Leader of the Year is Tim Larison, owner of Family Travel Gurus in Aurora, CO, who leads the Denver Nexion Network.

The ACT (Agents Connecting Together) Mentor Award was given to Bill Tilburg, owner of Global Travel Advisors in Mansfield, MA. The award recognizes a Nexion Travel Group member who has devoted considerable time and effort to mentoring fellow members and helping them develop their business and capabilities as a travel advisor.

Shylar Bredewold of Odyssean Travel, based in Ontario, was honored as Social Pro of the Year. Bredewold has extensive experience in using social media to market his business and regularly gives back by helping his fellow members with their social media issues, Nexion said.

Mary Anne Thoman of Travel Connections, based in Tulsa, OK, was chosen as this year’s NexionTownie of the Year. This award is given to the Nexion Travel Group member who in an active and committed member of NexionTown, the site for Nexion Travel Group members to connect. Thoman was nominated for this award by various staff at Nexion Travel Group who noticed her activity and willingness to engage with and help others on NexionTown.

AmaWaterways was named this year's Best Overall Supplier. 

Supplier Awards

Nexion also honored its top Supplier Partners of the Year, which are chosen by Nexion members in the United States and Canada in 21 categories. This year’s winners are:

  • Best Overall Supplier – AmaWaterways
  • Best Contemporary Cruise Line – Royal Caribbean International
  • Best Premium Cruise Line – Celebrity Cruises
  • Best Luxury Cruise Line – Regent Seven Seas Cruises
  • Best River Cruise Line – AmaWaterways
  • Best Package Tour Operator – GOGO Vacations
  • Best Escorted Tour Operator – Globus family of brands
  • Best Luxury Tour Operator – Tauck
  • Best Specialty Supplier – Universal Parks & Resorts Vacations
  • Best Rail Supplier – Rocky Mountaineer
  • Best Domestic Airline – Delta Air Lines
  • Best International Airline – United Airlines
  • Best Ground Transportation Supplier – Enterprise Holdings
  • Best Travel Insurance Supplier – Travel Insured International
  • Best Hotel Supplier – IHG
  • Best Technology/Booking Tool – Vax VacationAccess
  • Best Travel Advisor Education Program – Princess Cruises
  • Marketing Supplier Partner of the Year – Norwegian Cruise Line
  • Best Supplier Business Development Manager – Alicia Steuart, Carnival Cruise Line
  • Best Overall Canadian Supplier – Air Canada Vacations

Nexion Travel Group members also voted on the travel supplier who went above and beyond over the course of the year in providing support in one or more of the following categories: relief for hurricanes or other natural disasters, poverty, sustainable tourism, cultural heritage preservation and other philanthropic initiatives. Royal Caribbean International was named the 2019 Supplier Humanitarian of Year.

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