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Award Winners

Congratulations to all of the 2021 R.O.S.E. and R.I.S.E. Award winners! Have you received extraordinary customer service? 
Nominate them here.


R.O.S.E. Winners


Kristen (Kay) Bright

Guest Services Representative
Hilton Garden Inn, Merrillville

Kay sees every obstacle as an opportunity. Staying positive and keeping a motivational demeanor for every shift, she has changed the attitude of her team around her. Kay shines her light on both the associates and guests. She has made many relationships during the pandemic and is a reason why guests continue to return. Above all, Kay has made an uneasy time of travel, into a comfortable experience at the HGI. She has reassured guests and shown her endless care to each and every one of them that walks in the door. When staffing is falling short, Kay is quick to devote her time and assist wherever needed. She has picked up shifts in every department, with a smile on her face. This dedication is hard to come by. It’s associates like these that turn into those leaders that make the biggest impact. It’s in her name...Kay’s light truly shines BRIGHT at the HGI.

Elyssia Logsdon

Security Officer
Hard Rock Casino Northern Indiana, Gary

One evening a guest was walking through the slot section when they bumped into a slot stand causing a laceration to her leg. The laceration was deep enough that an artery was slashed and began to bleed profusely. The Hard Rock Security team, Gary Police Department and Hard Rock EMTs were notified and immediately reported to the location. Security Officer Elyssia Logsdon, who is currently an Indiana Army National Guard Soldier, immediately recognized the seriousness of this situation and took charge. Officer Logsdon, EMT Myers and an off-duty nurse worked in concert to stabilize the patient, apply a tourniquet by using another guest’s belt, as well as put pressure on the wound using napkins. The wound was eventually wrapped with a 4x4 gauze patch and acrylic tape. The team assessing and treating the guest continued to comfort her by providing additional oxygen and comforting words. The guest was quickly transported to the hospital where she received additional lifesaving treatment and has fully recovered from the incident. The responding Gary Police Officers and the Hard Rock EMT’s all stated without Elyssia’s leadership, quick thinking efforts and life saving measures that took place, the guest’s life would have been in serious jeopardy.

Sandy Martinez

Sales Associate
Eco Chic Boutique, Dyer

Two ladies popped over to Eco Chic during Memorial Day weekend because they saw a Facebook Live video by Sandy who was touting the great sale at the store. They arrived at the store around 3:40pm and were instantly greeted by Sandy with her infectious smile. Sandy let them know that the store was closing at 4:00pm (an hour early) because of the holiday yet she encouraged them to take their time. At 4:00pm one of the customers was still trying on dresses and Sandy let her know that she needed to lock the doors but told her to take her time as she had some work to complete. Around 4:15pm there was a knock at the door. Outside was an elderly woman carrying a dress. She looked very sad when she realized the store was closed. Sandy recognized her as she had visited earlier that day looking for jewelry for her granddaughter’s wedding. There were a couple of pieces of jewelry she had her eye on, but she wanted to make sure she was buying the “right” jewelry for the special day. Without hesitation, Sandy let the woman in, brought her over to the jewelry section and suggested a few pieces for the woman. The woman was so grateful, that with service like Sandy’s, she will keep coming back.

Richard Nichols

Catering Associate
Strack & Van Til, Schererville

Richard always goes above and beyond to make sure Strack & Van Til’s customers are taken care of. He is cheerful, polite, and friendly to everyone he meets. He has a great responsibility towards his job and the customers he serves. One example: During one of the past weekends with heavy rain, Richard delivered and set up an outdoor wedding reception for 100 people. During the event, the tent collapsed with the heavy rain. Richard took it upon himself to stay on his own time and help serve the wedding meal, making sure the guests were taken care of. He is a true example of “going the extra mile,” time and time again.

Jennifer Schreiber

Pharmacist’s Assistant
Walgreens, Whiting

The guest who nominated Jennifer assists a 97-year-old woman that has no living family. Given her age, the woman has multiple prescriptions to fill and does not have a supplemental Medicare policy. Jennifer goes out of her way to make sure that any discounts are applied to the woman’s bill. She also makes sure that the prescriptions are filled quickly in a timely fashion. Finally, she asks how the woman is doing, which means a lot to the 97-year-old and even to the customer picking up the prescriptions. All the better, Jennifer is this way with everyone; often serving the drive-thru window, the counter and phone calls simultaneously. She seems to be guided by the principle that all customers are important. Jennifer Schreiber is the reason why many people continue to shop and get their prescriptions at the Whiting Walgreens.

Kirk Sladic

Lead Bartender
DOC’s Smokehouse & Craft Bar, Dyer

Kirk has been a bartender at DOC’s since shortly after it opened. Kirk prides himself on getting to know his guests, not just their names but what they drink. Frequently he is mixing a guest’s preferred cocktail before they make it to their seat at the bar. He keeps a notebook with notes on what a particular guest likes or dislikes and helps guide their beverage selection. He has an encyclopedic knowledge of bourbon and can almost always select one a guest will love after asking them a few questions. When DOC’s announced it was reopening in April, the Facebook page was quickly filled with comments asking if Kirk would be returning. Kirk has become an integral part of the DOC’s family over the years, and DOC’s would not be the same without him.

Proselia Walker

Cook
Hard Rock Casino Northern Indiana, Gary

Proselia comes to work each day as a living example of going the extra mile. She gracefully maneuvers between the back of the kitchen prepping pizzas, to the front of the house, running expo and serving guests, and then to the kitchen line, accurately and enthusiastically cooking orders. She wears multiple hats very well, but where she shines is when she listens, mentors, and pushes the team forward with the spirit of generosity. She is constantly uniting both the front and back of the house, in and outside of work. She goes out of her way to remind staff daily, that we are a strong team, while sending positive vibes, whether she is at work, or on vacation. Everyone knows they are a priority to her. By working with Proselia, her teammates feel happier, hopeful, and acknowledged. This positive energy is always passed on to the guests.

Patrick Wozny

Breakfast Attendant
Hampton Inn & Suites, Valparaiso

Patrick is an amazing breakfast attendant but does so much more! He is always concerned about the hotel’s “little” guests and making sure they have a great experience and will stop at nothing to get them to smile. By making the kids happy this usually rubs off on the adults as well. Whether it be making Donald Duck noises, playing like a T-Rex or making sure each kid leaves with a sticker, he will not stop until they are smiling when they leave. It doesn’t just stop at kids though, as Patrick has worked extremely hard to make sure that we can be accommodating of all guests - especially those with dietary restrictions. The hotel has had several guests ask about Gluten Free options and instead of just giving them the basic GF muffins Patrick wanted to make sure that everyone would have options and not just prepackaged items. Patrick worked hard to make sure the hotel could even start making GF homemade waffles for guests so they were not left out. Rain, snow or sunshine, Patrick is always at work.

YuanYun Zhong

Server
Hard Rock Casino Northern Indiana, Gary

YuanYun is always providing excellent customer service and is the very definition of teamwork. On July 9th of this year, a customer left their denture wrapped in a napkin and left the restaurant. They returned later in the shift looking for it. YuanYun combed through the garbage bin looking for the denture and was able to find it for the guest. This saved the guest from embarrassment as well as the financial hit to the pocketbook. YuanYun has shown compassion to guests on many occasions. Recently, one of the casino’s guests had difficulty removing the tail from his peel and eat shrimp due to arthritis in his hands. YuanYun graciously stepped in without hesitation to assist him.  YuanYun’s compassion and friendliness are authentic, and is shown to her guests day in and out.


R.I.S.E. Winners


Sonia Bailey

Executive Housekeeper
Fairfield Inn & Suites Fair Oaks Farms, Fair Oaks

When an elderly couple was displaced by a fire during COVID, little did they know that an Executive Housekeeper would become their everyday hero. Fearing constant interaction with different staff members would expose them to COVID, Sonia became family to them. She calmed their fears by making them her top priority; coming in on her days off to offer room service and making their hotel room a home away from home for more than a year. Not only do hotel guests rave about the amazing things Sonia does, but her team does as well. Sonia has forfeited days off to ensure her team could relax and spend time with their families. Sonia’s smile, positive attitude, hard work and meticulous attention to detail are one of the big reasons why guests love the property.

Joe & Pam Broadaway

Owners
Trailblazers Bike Barn, Hobart

Earlier this summer, a couple contacted Trailblazers Bike Barn to inquire about purchasing a bicycle. The store was closed when they called but the owner, Pam, answered saying she was in the store doing paperwork and was happy to answer any questions. After talking to the customer for a while, she invited her and her husband to come in that day (even though the store was closed) and offered to show them what she had in stock. From the minute they entered the store, Pam went above and beyond explaining, fitting, answering their questions and ultimately locating a bike which fit her needs. Sadly, they were unable to ship the bike she desired to Trailblazers, but Pam still encouraged them to purchase it when she located it elsewhere. Pam even offered to treat it as if the bike was purchased from Trailblazers by giving the first service free, etc. The great service the couple received by both Pam and Joe established clients “for life” by building relationships over making money.

Jon Collette

Security Ambassador Supervisor
Horseshoe Casino, Hammond

Jon has been on the security team for nearly 5 years. He makes sure his shifts run smoothly through teamwork and is also known as a scheduling expert. On November 13th of last year, Jon entered the men’s bathroom on the casino floor and found a guest on the ground in a stall with the door locked, unresponsive and unconscious. Through quick thinking, Jon was able to work with another supervisor to reach the guest and start emergency treatment. Horseshoe’s security team handles many unique situations every week, and Jon is a leader that sets an example for other team members.

Nicole Jones

General Manager
Best Western Northwest Indiana Inn, Hammond

In May of this year, Nicole and the staff of the Best Western Hammond endured one of the most challenging situations that the industry would have to face – the disappearance of a nonverbal child who was staying at the property. Nicole was one of the first people to be told of the child’s absence and immediately sprung into action. During this entire ordeal Nicole assisted in any way that she could – comforting the family, personally going to nearby businesses, searching the property, assisting the police with camera footage, making meeting rooms available for staging areas, providing ice and water for the searchers and to the best of her ability, accommodated every request the authorities had. Nicole managed all these issues, in addition to running the hotel. These were difficult, disheartening days, which culminated in the worst outcome possible when the boy was located. Everyone involved in the search commended Nicole on her professionalism during this unfortunate ordeal.

Milan Kruszynski

Port Authority Director
Hammond Port Authority, Hammond

Milan is the face of the Hammond Port Authority which manages and operates the Hammond Marina, Lost Marsh Golf Course, the Pavilion at Wolf Lake, and all trails and parks north of 129th Street. He is a hands-on director and goes out of his way to create a wonderful recreational experience for everyone using the facilities. Milan works long, arduous hours while ‘in season’ often going weeks without a day off. He can be found at all the Port Authority events as no job is beneath him. If there is something to be done and his staff needs help, he is the first one to jump in. Milan epitomizes the true meaning of the term public servant. After more than 30 years with the City of Hammond, he still arrives at work daily looking for ways to improve the quality of life for the residents.

Spencer Newell

General Manager
Schoop’s Hamburgers, Highland

Spencer has done a great job in trying to retain, train and protect the health of all employees throughout the COVID health crisis. This is not a job that can be accomplished remotely. He worked during periods of community restrictions, handling carryout meals only, and always maintained proper social distancing to protect the community and the fellow employees. Some of the challenges he faced include supply chain issues, increases in the prices of supplies, problems receiving items, as well as a major employment staffing crisis. In addition to keeping the store running, Spencer also provided opportunities for various groups to enjoy a meal on the house as a way of saying thank you to the community and to support local police, fire, hospital, and charitable organizations.