About Stars of the Industry
Employee recognition and retention are invaluable elements to the success of hotels. IHLA's Stars of the Industry Awards Program was established in 1996 to honor IHLA member hotel employees for their outstanding accomplishments, service, and leadership in the hospitality and lodging industry. Illinois has thousands of exceptional hotel and lodging employees who help our visitors enjoy their stay, and the Stars Program recognizes the best of the best, those who truly go above and beyond and whose incredible hard work, dedication, attentiveness, and genuine kindness towards both guests and fellow colleagues is an inspiration to their peers.
To honor the talent and performance of employees who go that extra mile to provide extraordinary service to their hotel guests, each year, awards are presented to individuals in 11 categories from IHLA member hotels in 3 regions:
- Chicago Suburban
- Central Illinois
IHLA hosts 3 annual Stars of the Industry events, each in their 20th year:
Stars of the Industry Central Illinois Regional Luncheon | October 2017: TBA
Stars of the Industry Chicagoland Regional Luncheon | 11/1/17: Hyatt Regency O'Hare
State Stars of the Industry & Membership Holiday Luncheon | 12/14/17: Chicago, TBA
Each year, a dedicated team of judges review hundreds of nominations to select the Regional then State winners of the award categories listed below. Our members then gather as an industry to recognize these exceptional individuals who best represent the service and spirit of the lodging industry.
The Regional Stars of the Industry Awards Luncheons take place in October. At the Central Illinois Regional Luncheon, one set of winners is selected from nominees in Central, Northern, Southern, and Western Illinois. At the Chicagoland Regional Luncheon, two sets of winners are selected: Chicago and Chicago Suburban.
READ MORE ABOUT THE 2016 WINNERS
Participating in Stars of the Industry
We encourage all of our members to participate in this high profile employee recognition program; to nominate and show appreciation for their outstanding team members and give them the opportunity to be recognized by their peers at an entertaining celebration they will never forget. There is no cost to nominate an IHLA hotel member employee.
All nominees will be listed on our IHLA website and in the Regional Stars Program Book and will receive an IHLA Stars of the Industry Recognition Certificate. New Hotels that nominate employees for the first time will receive recognition in the Regional Stars Program Book and at the Regional Luncheons. It is IHLA's privilege to celebrate the accomplishments of all the nominees, finalists, and winners presented each year.
Stars Nomination Form - 2016 nominations are now closed.
To submit nominations, complete the form HERE and submit no more than one additional page explaining why the nominee deserves the award. Additional supporting materials may include two individual documents such as testimonial letters, guest comment cards, or digital pictures of nominees in action. Please upload nomination form and supporting materials as ONE PDF. Nominees must have worked a minimum of one year in the hotel or lodging industry. Resubmitting updated applications for previous nominees is encouraged. Regional winners are not eligible to be nominated again in the same category if they have won within the past three years.
Regional Level Awards
State Level Awards
- Hotelier of the Year
- Department-Division Head Employee of the Year
- Manager of the Year
- Administrative Employee of the Year
- Bell Staff Employee of the Year
- First-Level Supervisor Employee of the Year
- Food & Beverage Employee of the Year - Front of the House
- Food & Beverage Employee of the Year - Heart of the House
- Guest Service Employee of the Year
- Housekeeping Employee of the Year
- Maintenance Employee of the Year