INTERNATIONAL. Exceptional frontline and behind the scenes travel retail staff have been honoured for their efforts in outstanding customer service, lateral thinking and for going above and beyond, at The Moodie Davitt Report’s third annual FAB Superstars Awards.

Fourteen teams or individuals were singled out as the best in the industry at the FAB + Hospitality Conference and Awards in Bangkok, after being nominated by bosses and colleagues as incredible team players, often when faced with extraordinary personal circumstances.

Judges included Masterchef Australia’s Diana Chan; hospitality expert and owner of Ann Elliott Hospitality Consultancy Ann Elliott; much-respected industry veteran and consultant Nick Inkster; Ground Control CEO Kevin Zajax; Co-founder of food & beverage to retail experts Hunter Palmer – Global Retail Solutions Nick Goddard-Palmer, and veteran US airport commercial revenues expert and Senior Aviation Commercial Planner for ICF Alan Gluck, as well as The Moodie Davitt Report Founder & Chairman Martin Moodie.
“We aim to recognise the doers, the greeters, the people whose small, thoughtful touches and acts of service quietly make our journeys more pleasurable and memorable,” said Moodie, introducing the Awards. “This is an opportunity for the travel F&B community to reward the efforts of staff during what has continued to be a challenging time and to say ‘Thank you! We see that you went above and beyond.’”

He added that “the awards are about heart and soul” and said winners were chosen based on their priceless work ethic, incredible personalities and natural talent for leadership and guiding others.

Savitra Sukhram’s humble approach after 27 years on the job for SSP America.

Front of House Star Individual for The Americas, Guyanese-born Savitre Sukhram certainly left the audience in awe. A cashier and union rep at John F Kennedy International Airport Terminal 4, she quietly battled breast cancer while raising a child and continuing her work for as long as possible until receiving – successful – treatment.

Sukhram was praised and nominated by dozens of colleagues for her passion, kindness and for being the “sage of the airport”, and received a personal recommendation from the company’s Regional Vice President Geoffrey Lentz.

The full 2023 FAB Superstars roll of honour:

Front of House Team winners

The Americas: The Areas Worldwide Challenge

Asia Pacific: SSP Mactan Cebu Team, Mactan Cebu International Airport

Europe: SSP Burger King Team, Stansted Airport

Africa and the Middle East: Emirates Leisure Retail Costa Coffee Terminal 3 Skytrain, Dubai International Airport

Back of House Team winners

The Americas: HMS Host, Toronto Pearson International Airport

Europe: Autogrill Product Innovation, Concept Development and Training Team

Africa and the Middle East: Emirates Leisure Retail Giraffe, Concourse, Dubai International Airport

Front of House Star individuals

The Americas: Savitre Sukhram, SSP America, John F Kennedy International Airport

Asia Pacific: Kate Chessells, SSP Asia Pacific, Operations Manager Hobart International Airport

Africa and the Middle East: Edabelle Ragay-Veloso, SSP Eastern Europe and Middle East, HSE & Sustainability Manager

Back of House Star individuals

The Americas: Wael elTabach, Regional Director of Dining Operations, Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, Paradies Largardère

Asia Pacific: Arianna Brezigar, HMSHost International, Project Manager of Operations APAC

Europe: Jim Norris, Food and Beverage Director, SSP UK and Ireland

Africa and the Middle East: Habibur Rahman Skarkar, Senior Cook, SSP Eastern Europe and the Middle East. ✈️