2017 Award Winners

Chairman's Award

Lynne A. Urbani, Director, House Policy Office, Rhode Island House of Representatives

President's Award

Bob Luz, Massachusetts Restaurant Association

Hotelier of the Year

Walter Andrews, Newport Marriott

Restaurateur of the Year

Richard Mignanelli, Richards Pub & Restaurant and Ritrovo Pub & Grille

Boss of the Year

Kristine Cox, The Newport Harbor Hotel & Marina

Jackson Donoyan, NYLO Hotel

Vendor of the Year

FJ Concepts

Packaging & More

Vendor Representatives of the Year

Benjamin Greene, Ecolab

Ron Bernier, Rhode Island Distributing

David Muller, Sysco Boston

Volunteer of the Year

Dawn Arpin, Blum Shapiro

Jennifer Hogencamp, Blum Shapiro

Chef of the Year

Walter Slater, Trio

Richard Silvia, White Horse Tavern

Mary Brennan Tourism Award

Lara Salamano, Commerce RI

Experience Rhode Island Tours

Lifetime Achievement Award

Peter Letendre, Sysco Boston (Retired)

Media Partnership Award

Providence Journal Company

Woman of the Year

Ruth Ferrazzano, Murphy's

Man of the Year

Thomas Regan, Christopher & Regan Insurance

Farm to Fork Excellence in Sustainability

Cook & Dagger

The Salted Slate

The Spiced Pear Restaurant

Hospitality Ambassador of the Year

Liz Tanner, Commerce RI

John C. Gregory, Northern Rhode Island Chamber of Commerce

Employees of the Year


Dwayne Julius, Gurney’s Newport Resort & Marina

Juan Diaz, Hilton Providence

Roselia (Rosita) Roca, Hilton Providence

Jack Alkabout, Hotel Viking

Ashley Bergen, Hotel Viking

Joseph Downing, Hotel Viking

Rory Freeman, Omni Providence Hotel

Wanda Jorge, Omni Providence Hotel

Lea Sunaz-Lods, Providence Biltmore Hotel

Danny Monfils, Providence Marriott Downtown

Daniela Ferrufino, Renaissance Providence Downtown

David Gulley, Renaissance Providence Downtown

Liliana Teixeira, Renaissance Providence Downtown

Frank Agresti, The Hampton Inn and Suites Providence Warwick Airport

Laura Leavitt, The Hampton Inn and Suites Providence Warwick Airport

Amilicar Silva, The Hampton Inn and Suites Providence Warwick Airport

Anthony Paulrick Francis, The Hilton Garden Inn Providence Airport Warwick

Courtney McNeight, The Newport Harbor Hotel & Marina


Ashley Bousquet, Angelo’s Palace Pizza

Rolando Morales, Angelo’s Palace Pizza

Barbara Caswell, Chelo’s Hometown Bar & Grille

Wayne Hemond, Chelo’s Hometown Br & Grille

Jeff Shabo, Chow Fun Food Group

Kelly Doran, Gracie’s

Nancy Cordeiro, Gregg’s Restaurants and Taverns

Kristine Swanson, Gregg’s Restaurants and Taverns

Jay Martin, Gurney's Newport Resort & Marina

Shenelle Teixeira, Providence Marriott Downtown

Malika Walker, Providence Marriott Downtown

Mariana Gonzalez-Trasvina, The Mooring Seafood Kitchen & Bar

Susan Tosan, The Newport Harbor Hotel & Marina

Mercedes Fajardo, The Rooftop at the Providence G

Michael Ferrucci, The Rooftop at the Providence G

Sarai Pryor, The Rooftop at the Providence G

John Lawless, Twin River Casino

Kimberly Graziano, Wicked Good Bar & Grill


Nicholas Barone, LAZ Ultimate Hospitality

Lucas McDonald, LAZ Ultimate Hospitality

Christopher Raposo, Regency Plaza


Sam Williams, Angelo’s Palace Pizza

Sean Corcoran, Fleming’s Steakhouse & Wine Bar

Kerrie Berard Leroux, Kay’s Restaurant

Anthony Guaetta, Lighthouse Bar


Manuel Justo, Providence Biltmore Hotel

Katherine Ross, The Newport Harbor Hotel & Marina

Edwin Vasquez, Twin River Event Center

Reinaldo Gomes, VIP Lounge at Twin River Casino

Emerging Leader

Jared Chelo, Chelo’s Hometown Bar & Grille

Kyle Poland, Circe

Aarin Clemens, Dean Hotel

Joshua Dabiew, Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar

Ramon Guzman, Hilton Providence

Casey Gilman, Omni Providence Hotel

Michael Babb, Providence Biltmore Hotel

Melissa Williams, Twin River Event Center

Daniel DiPietro, Twin River Casino


Jen Bailey, Discover Newport

Laura DeStefanis, Greater Providence Warwick Convention and Visitors Bureau

Kristen Vecchi, Rhode Island Convention Center

John Rodman, The Preservation Society of Newport County

David Brown, Twin River Casino

Frank Martucci, Twin River Casino

RI Hospitality Education Foundation Award Winners

Chairman's Award

Russell Moring Catering & Events

Teacher of the Year

Donald Fair, Chariho Career & Technical Center

Education Partnership of the Year


Uncle Tony's Pizza & Pasta - East Providence

Education Ambassador of the Year

Lee Lewis, Junior Achievement of Rhode Island

Jules Olley, Point Judith Country Club

Student of the Year

Shane Cha, Exeter Job Corps Academy