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In this issue, we once again feature coverage from our annual WAVE and Trendsetter awards. This is the 10th anniversary of WAVE, and we are humbled by the support we have received from both readers and suppliers. By participating in these awards for the past 10 years, travel agents have proudly supported their favorite suppliers across all industry segments. Through their carefully considered votes, agents have given back to the companies that do so much to support them every day.
The WAVE Awards are actually a two-part process. Our editors begin by painstakingly analyzing each category to come up with the suppliers most deserving of the Editor’s Pick stamp of approval. From these choices, travel agents in the West vote for the best of the best in order to determine the WAVE Award winners that we acknowledge in this issue.
This issue also celebrates the achievements of eight top travel agents in four Trendsetter Award categories. These Trendsetters display the kind of professionalism that raises the profile of all agents.
Finally, we pay tribute to the 2015 TravelAge West Excellence in Leadership Award recipient: Jack Richards, president and CEO of Pleasant Holidays. This award acknowledges a person who has had a major impact on the tourism industry, especially in the West. Without a doubt, Richards has been a leader in our industry for his entire career and is one of the biggest supporters of travel agents I’ve ever met.
“Jack’s strategic vision has always been focused on growing the business for Pleasant Holidays,” said Bob Sullivan, president of the Travel Group at Northstar Travel Media, when presenting the award to Richards. “He has expanded the Pleasant portfolio to offer new products that have evolved the company well beyond just Hawaii. With Jack’s leadership, Pleasant continues to enjoy a superb relationship with its travel agent partners, as evidenced by the numerous WAVE Awards and Travel Weekly Readers Choice Awards it has garnered.”
For more WAVE coverage, including more photos and a video from our black-tie WAVE dinner, visit our website TravelAgeWest.com/Wave.