More than 280 members and suppliers attended MAST’s Awards Night, “The Winner’s Circle”, March 3 with over 80 awards presented in five categories to more than 45 agencies and suppliers, according to MAST’s President and COO, John Werner. Werner presented the President’s Award to Linda Puchyr of Crystal Lake Travel, Crystal Lake, Illinois.
MAST’s highest sales award, the All Star Award, was presented to 22 agencies for their 2008 preferred supplier sales. Top agency was Foremost Travel in Chicago, Illinois. In addition to the award, these 22 top agencies will also attend the All Star trip this September aboard the Disney Wonder, hosted by Disney Destinations and Disney Cruise Line.
Nine agents were honored with the Million Dollar Agent Sales Award for their achievements in individual sales of MAST’s preferred suppliers. An additional seven agents received the Outstanding Agent Sales Award for their leisure travel sales of MAST’s preferred suppliers.
In the Business Development Awards category, Hinsdale Travel, Hinsdale, Illinois won for Best Group Promotion for their “Girls-on-the-Go” promotion and a Mediterranean group cruise aboard the Celebrity Summit. Destinations Travel Services of Sterling, Illinois won the award for Best Travel Show for their Jamaican-themed Chamber of Commerce business after-hours program.
MAST also recognized the exceptional service provided by its preferred suppliers. Recipients honored were Globus Family of Brands for Best Sales Managers and Best Product and Sales Training; Travel Guard for Best Inside Sales Support and Best Customer Service; Disney Destinations for Best Reservations Department; Royal Caribbean International for Best Group Department; Apple Vacations for Best Internet Site for Agents, Best Brochures, Marketing and Sales Tools, and Best MAST Sales Sensation Exhibit; and Travel Impressions for Best Client Documents and Trip Presentation.
Commenting on the President’s Award to Linda Puchyr, Werner said: “Through the years, Linda represented the views and interests of small, full-service agencies and brought that experience to her service on MAST’s Board of Directors and the numerous committees on which she served. Linda was a real champion of the needs of small agencies and always full of ideas to advance their interests. She worked with me on many projects and brought great clarity and common-sense solutions to everything she was involved in. Linda is most deserving of this award.”
Werner said that the awards underscored the achievements of MAST members and suppliers. “We proved tonight that some things are achievable even in difficult times. There are success stories to share and hard work is still rewarded. There is always a reason to celebrate.” Werner also said he believes that agencies and all small businesses will continue to persevere and figure out a way to survive
MAST Travel Network is a major travel agency consortium and marketing group in the Midwest with over 180 agency members in eight states and Canada.