Hirsh, Clements, Almestica recognized at PWCVB annual meeting

PROVIDENCE WARWICK CONVENTION and Visitors Bureau President and CEO Martha Sheridan (left) and Board Chair Dale Venturini (right) congratulate Hall of Fame Inductee Jeff Hirsh (center) at the PWCVB’s Annual Meeting./ PHOTO COURTESY PWCVB
PROVIDENCE WARWICK CONVENTION and Visitors Bureau President and CEO Martha Sheridan (left) and Board Chair Dale Venturini (right) congratulate Hall of Fame Inductee Jeff Hirsh (center) at the PWCVB’s Annual Meeting./ PHOTO COURTESY PWCVB

PROVIDENCE – The Providence Warwick Convention and Visitors Bureau celebrated the organization’s 2017 achievements at its annual meeting Thursday, which included recognition of local leaders.

According to PWCVB data, those events – including meetings, conventions and sports games – which were booked by the organization and took place in fiscal year 2017 resulted in approximately $65 million in direct spending.

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“That momentum is continuing. From June through September of this year, Providence hotel occupancy reached new heights, with June, August and September exceeding 87 percent,” said PWCVB president and CEO Martha Sheridan in a prepared statement.

Jeff Hirsh was inducted into the hall of fame at the Thursday evening event. Hirsh, owner of Lobster Pot in Bristol, is a PWCVB and R.I. Convention Center Authority board member. Among his many contributions to the local industry is his help founding the merchant group Explore Bristol.

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The 2017 Rhode Island Sports Champion award was presented to Aim High Academy parent group’s Diane Almestica in recognition of her growth of the Rhode Island Invitational gymnastics event and volunteer work with 2016 USA Gymnastics Championships.

A special recognition award was bestowed upon Hugh Clements, Providence police chief, for  his community advocacy and the ease with which his department executed large-scale events during the year.

In addition, after its direct involvement in scheduling a military reunion which netted nearly $500,000 in direct spending, Warwick’s Crowne Plaza Hotel was named Member of the Year.

The evening’s honors were rounded out with the distribution of 24 Recognition of Service Excellence awards to members of the industry. The 2017 ROSE honorees are:

  • Jason Armitage, line cook at the Omni Providence Hotel
  • Erica Flaxington, event coordinator at the Iron Works Tavern
  • Jamieson Fletcher, barback and food runner at the Shipyard Pub at Twin River Casino
  • Ashley Fontes, guest relations supervisor at the Providence Marriott Downtown
  • Lydie Gnacadja, bartender and server at the Twin River Event Center
  • Anne Holst, curator and president of the Clouds Hill Victorian House Museum
  • Arolin Hughes, sales manager at The Whiskey Republic
  • David McGinn, captain of security at the R.I. Convention Center
  • Armando Monteiro, prep cook at the Wicked Good Bar & Grill
  • Adam Oppenheimer, bartender at the Lighthouse Bar at Twin River
  • Jason Patrusevich, executive sous chef at the Crowne Plaza Hotel Warwick
  • Jose Perez, lobby attendant at the Hilton Providence
  • Jeffrey Peete, utility man at the Capital Grille
  • Doungvesal Pich, server at Capri restaurant
  • Franklin Rivera, bartender at the Rooftop at the Providence G
  • William Rosen, lead navigator at the Renaissance Providence Downtown Hotel
  • Raymond P. Roy, master tour guide at the Preservation Society of Newport County
  • David Rubino, front desk associate at the Hampton Inn Seekonk
  • Tasia Shaw, front desk agent and night auditor at the Providence Biltmore Hotel
  • Amilcar Silva, night auditor and shuttle driver at the Hampton Inn & Suites Warwick Airport
  • Heather Singleton, chief operating officer at the R.I. Hospitality Association
  • McKayla Sturges, prep cook at Sydney Providence
  • Franklin Ticas, server at Fred & Steve’s Steakhouse
  • Shawn Williams, security guard at Trinity Rep.

Emily Gowdey-Backus is a staff writer for PBN. You can follow her on Twitter @FlashGowdey or contact her via email, gowdey-backus@pbn.com.

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