INTERNATIONAL. The Travel Retail Superstars Awards, the first edition of an annual awards for travel retail employees across airport, airline, downtown store and cruise sectors, has reached its crescendo.

The Moodie Davitt Report today named the inaugural winners of the TR Superstars Awards, which have placed an overdue spotlight on those frontline and behind the scenes heroes and heroines who have helped kept our industry going throughout the most profound and sustained crisis it has ever faced.

We asked employers to submit a written entry for each individual or team, addressing the impact made by the person or department through their actions, and how far they reached; how they measured success in terms of service or helped improve the business; and what made a particular staff member or team stand out.

Categories included Star Team, Star Individual, Star Story (Team or Individual), Innovation (Team or Individual) and Humanity, Leadership & Inspiration. Nominations were invited by region and by department: Shop Floor — Customer Facing, Logistics Warehouse, Back Office (Marketing, IT, Commercial and Procurement) to cover as broad a spectrum of staff as possible.

The announcement was made at the Virtual Travel Retail Expo on the final day of the pioneering all-digital event.

The awards, hosted by Martin Moodie, were judged by Spark Group of Companies CEO & Founder Heidi Van Roon and Flash global Logistics Global Director of People & Culture Marcus Griffin.

Martin Moodie, Spark Group of Companies CEO & Founder Heidi Van Roon and Flash global Logistics Global Director of People & Culture Marcus Griffin announced the winners of the inaugural TR Superstars awards

Moodie said, “All the nominees and their stories are exceptional, moving, exemplary. The number of entries we received was humbling and inspiring, a true celebration of the human touch that sets this industry apart.”

“These awards are so timely and appropriate,” added Van Roon. “I’m a big supporter of adding the human element into everything we do and reading these submissions have really inspired me thanks to the amazing commitment, creativity and resourcefulness of these individuals who have gone above and beyond”

Griffin added, “Thank you for The Moodie Davitt Report for this fabulous initiative and a huge shoutout to all the nominees and the folks who nominated them. The travel retail industry is awake, it’s alive and it’s recovering and if you read these wonderful stories of colleagues giving back – it will certainly inspire you.”

Here are the winners of this inaugural awards that celebrates the most important and very human element of our industry.


Star Team Americas: Shop Floor – Customer Facing

Andrezza Hotta, Head Buyer Accessories, Shopping China & Carol Escobar, Import Executive, Shopping China, Shopping China’s Border Shop, Paraguay

Nominated by Victorinox

“(Right) Carol and (left) Andrezza’s actions have shown that consumers and sales staff come first. After going through what was the most challenging times in their professional careers, they always put the consumer and the sales staff first in every initiative discussed between themselves and Victorinox.” — Victorinox

Star Team Americas: Logistics / Warehouse

The Team at WTDC

Nominated by Sean Gazitua, President & CEO, WTDC

“The company changed gears to begin handling medical equipment,medical supplies, and renewable energy equipment during the pandemic. Masks, COVID-19 test kits, ventilators, and other equipment surged into the U.S. as traditional transportation options took a backseat to dedicated trucks and chartered planes.” — Sean Gazitua

Star Team Americas: Back Office – Marketing, HR, IT, Commercial, Procurement

Paradies Lagardère Marketing Team – MORE Campaign

Nominated by Paradies Lagardère

Star Team Europe: Shop Floor – Customer Facing

Fraser Meldrum Manager, Luggage Point, Glasgow Airport

Julie Fenwick Business Manager, Luggage Point, Glasgow Airport

Nominated by Luggage Point

“Day in, day out from Fraser and Julie, despite the restrictions enforced by the COVID-19 pandemic, they have sought to give the highest level of service to our customers using every means at their disposal, often thinking outside the box to make things happen.” — Luggage Point

Star Team Europe: Back Office – Marketing, HR, IT, Commercial, Procurement

ARI Sales & Marketing Team, The TasteHouse, The Loop Dublin Airport

Nominated by Pernod Ricard

“Through close partnership and collaboration, both ARI and Pernod Ricard Global Travel Retail have mutually benefited in numerous ways. Neither party could have foreseen the obstacles that would face the team, the industry and indeed the wider global impact.” — Pernod Ricard

Star Team Asia Pacific Shop Floor – Customer Facing

Team at ARI Auckland (The Loop Duty Free), Auckland Airport

Nominated by ARI Auckland

Star Team Middle East & Africa: Shop Floor – Customer Facing

DXB Dubai Duty Free Brand Ambassadors Team for Pernod Ricard, DXB

Nominated by Pernod Ricard

“For those 18 months, the group of dedicated DDF brand ambassadors demonstrated an incredible level of discipline & grit, wresting control of this unprecedented situation and transforming it to an opportunity for self-improvement. We stand humbly on the shoulders of these giants; as such we believe we owe them our thanks and support.” — Pernod Ricard

Star Team Middle East & Africa: Back Office – Marketing, HR, IT, Commercial, Procurement

Operations and Human Resources Team

Nominated by Dubai Duty Free

“The Ops and HR Teams in particular were at the centre of DDF’s rapid response to the COVID-19 crisis and have played a central role in keeping the workforce safe, engaged, productive and resilient…by putting people first, creating a safe environment and enabling new ways of operating.” — Dubai Duty Free


Star Individual Americas: Shop Floor – Customer Facing

Alejandro Cordella, Store Sales Executive Watch & Accessories at Dufry – Ezeiza International Airport, Buenos Aires

Nominated by Victorinox

“Alejandro is a true brand ambassador and a passionate, experienced watch salesperson. His knowledge of the industry, brand and overall generosity of sharing his knowledge with everyone makes him a true star individual.” — Victorinox

Star Individual Americas: Back Office – Marketing, HR, IT, Commercial, Procurement

Marie-Lise Manoukian, Head of Finance, Aer Rianta International-North America

Nominated by ARI-North America

“Marie-Lise showed what a true leader she is and hired a phenomenal new team, without being able to meet any of them in person. With this new team she was able to keep the company cash flow positive even though all the stores were closed and we had no revenue to speak of for four months.” — ARI North America

Star Individual Asia Pacific: Shop Floor – Customer Facing

Kenny Wong, Brand Consultant, Taoyuan Airport

Nominated by Pernod Ricard

“Kenny Wong deserves this award for bringing to life the convivial cocktail experience in store and driving team morale, building excitement with travellers and building consumer confidence within the store environment, and providing shop floor insight to the team when airside access was restricted.” – Pernod Ricard

Star Individual Asia Pacific: Back Office – Marketing, HR, IT, Commercial, Procurement

Sarah O’Donnell, HR Specialist, ARI Auckland (The Loop Duty Free)

Nominated by ARI Auckland

“Her compassion, commitment, and loyalty reach every person in our business. Her strength, initiative, and support through the darkest days of our industry has been a guiding light to many…I often find people unknowingly turn to Sarah for her guidance and input.” — Stephen Mascarenhas, ARI Auckland

Star Individual Europe – Shop Floor – Customer Facing

Rosalie Kirkman, In-store Consultant, William Grant & Sons GTR, London Heathrow

Nominated by William Grant and Sons

“Rosalie Kirkman deserves the award for her dedication and professionalism to give customers the best possible service. Her energy and effort are incredible for a woman who continues to push the boundaries and continues to lead by example after 40 years delighting customers at LHR.” — William Grant and Sons

Star Individual Europe: Back Office – Marketing, HR, IT, Commercial, Procurement

Collette Heffer, Customer Service Team Leader, 3Sixty UK

Nominated by 3Sixty Duty Free & More

“Collette is the only team member who has worked full time since April 2020 to now, and without her commitment to the business we would not have been able to generate the sales we have.” — 3Sixty Duty Free & More

Star Individual Middle East & Africa: Shop Floor – Customer Facing

Ali Attia Ali El Sayed, Sales Assistant – Retail, DDF

Nominated by Dubai Duty Free

“Ali is one of DDF’s finest employees with an extraordinary customer service skill. His polite and friendly nature makes it easy for customers to approach him. One would always see him handing over shopping baskets, looking for customers that require assistance, answering customers queries and helping them pack their goods when required. His service has always been nothing less than exemplary.” — Dubai Duty Free

Star Individual Middle East & Africa: Back Office – Marketing, HR, IT, Commercial, Procurement

Wendy Valenzuela Rivera, Project Manager, QDF

Nominated by Qatar Duty Free

“Wendy has been instrumental in the redevelopment of the core duty free stores at HIA and in the opening of numerous new boutiques and F&B outlets across an extremely challenging backdrop” — Thabet Musleh


Star Story Americas: Shop Floor – Customer Facing

Crystal Channel, Retail Zone Manager, Portland International Airport

Nominated by Paradies Lagardère

“We’re so proud of the way Crystal saw a passenger in need and exceeded expectations for service, kindness, and care. Crystal lives and breathes customer service excellence, which goes well beyond the boundaries of our airport stores and restaurants and strives to positively impact the lives of passengers every day.” — Paradies Lagardère

Star Story Americas: Back Office – Marketing, HR, IT, Commercial, Procurement

Laura Siener, Regional Retail Operations VP, 3Sixty Duty Free & More

Nominated by 3Sixty Duty Free & More

“Every week, every month, Laura has found a way of recognising performance, backing up corporate programs like our Excellence Awards and Quarterly Recognitions, and is always saying that we need to find a way of recognising our teams out there, that they have gone through a lot – not thinking about herself and her own personal health battle.” — 3Sixty Duty Free & More

Star Story Asia Pacific: Shop Floor – Customer Facing

Discover Singapore Team, Lagardère Travel Retail Singapore

Star Story Asia Pacific – Shopfloor (Lagardere Travel Retail Singapore Pte Ltd – Discover Singapore).mp4 from Henry Lim on Vimeo.

Star Story Asia Pacific: Back Office – Marketing, HR, IT, Commercial, Procurement

Back-Office & Merchandising Team, Maldives

Nominated by Airports Company

Star Story Middle East & Africa: Shop Floor – Customer Facing

Walid Rawass and Ziad Korjieh, Brand Ambassadors Phoenicia, Beirut Duty Free, Aer Rianta Pheonicia, Lebanon

Nominated by Pernod Ricard

“The BA’s commitment to sell during these trying times does expose the true resilience of Walid and Ziad. They have taken this time to maximise sales to the full potential knowing full well passengers have been few and far between. A discovery they share during these trying times is that challenges make us stronger and maybe even achieve better.” — Pernod Ricard


Innovation Asia Pacific: Shop Floor – Customer Facing

Melanie Rutherford, Head of Operations,  ARI Auckland Ltd  (The Loop Duty Free)

Nominated by ARI Auckland

“When faced with the choice to either accept or fight the challenges thrown at ARI Auckland in the last 12 months, Mel has always chosen to fight. She has fought for the jobs of 240 employees and for a business that she has helped to charter through some particularly rough seas…she is an inspiration to all around her.” — ARI Auckland

Innovation Europe: Back Office – Marketing, HR, IT, Commercial, Procurement

All EMEA: Dufry GCM Marketing Team

  • Georgie Rickard – Senior Marketing Dufry EMEA & Global Co-ordination
  • Sophia Sergides – Market Activation Manager – UK
  • Anielka Scandoval – Market Activation Manager – Americas
  • Margarita Pchelkina – Market Manager – Russia
  • Regina Bao – Market Activation Manager – Asia
  • Bronwen Goodbar – Digital Manager

Nominated by Pernod Ricard

“Throughout lockdown, the team consistently led a holistically resilient ‘rebellion’ against restrictions by providing a compelling 360 consumer experience both online and via relevant cross category activation in a safe, reassuring way to maintain passenger confidence in duty free. The collaboration and partnership spirit with the Dufry Global team has re-inspired the channel.” — Pernod Ricard

Innovation Middle East & Africa: Back Office – Marketing, HR, IT, Commercial, Procurement

IT Team (Home Delivery Specials), Dubai Duty Free

Nominated by Dubai Duty Free

“The Home Delivery channel has earned DDF a new segment of happy customers as well as giving the experience and confidence needed to set up and operate a totally new revenue stream as an airport retailer. Above all, it has been a huge team effort…and has kept hundreds of its staff busy at work during the darker days of the pandemic.”


Logistics / Warehouse

Sean Gazitua, President & CEO, WTDC

Nominated by WTDC

“Sean brings tremendous positive energy and industry knowledge to the workplace and has demonstrated exceptional leadership over the last 18 months as he navigated the company’s direction in these uncertain times.” — WTDC

Humanity, Leadership & Inspiration Americas: Back Office – Marketing, HR, IT, Commercial, Procurement

Gregg Paradies, President & CEO, Paradies Lagardère

Nominated by Paradies Lagardère

“Without exception, Gregg Paradies puts the organisation ahead of any personal interest or goal and emerged as a beacon of hope, inspiration, and trust.” — Paradies Lagardère

Humanity, Leadership & Inspiration Asia Pacific: Shop Floor – Customer Facing

CWI & Darin Brand Consultants, Jeju International Airport Korea

Nominated by Pernod Ricard

“When a colleague was threatened with Covid-19 and having to self-isolate for weeks, the team’s agility, humanity & leadership shone through. Their teamwork exceeded any expectation as two competing agencies supported one another and achieved maximised sales and improved efficiency, showing the importance of humanity and how a new team spirit can shine through for a business.” — Pernod Ricard

Humanity, Leadership & Inspiration Asia Pacific: Back Office – Marketing, HR, IT, Commercial, Procurement

All Teams, Lagardère Travel Retail Singapore

Nominated by Lagardère Travel Retail Singapore

“In such times of crisis, we stepped up as a team on social activism towards our airport community and beyond. The numerous efforts by our team have allowed us to demonstrate our Group’s values and our team’s commitment towards our social responsibilities in the pandemic. We hope these efforts will inspire learning, optimism, activism and wellness amongst our employees, communities and beyond.” — Lagardère Travel Retail Singapore

Humanity, Leadership & Inspiration Asia Pacific – Special Judges Award

Rakhita Jayawardena, President of King Power Traveler (KPT)

Nominated by King Power Traveler

“The livelihood of the company and entire staff was at stake, yet Rakhita was undaunted and rallied all the staff spread across our 12 operating locations across Asia with his bold and resounding words, ‘We will survive and we will continue.’” — King Power Traveler

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