Vail Resorts employees honored

Provided to the Tribune

Vail Resorts has recognized three Lake Tahoe employees with its 2013 Epic Service Award.

Geoffery Jackson of Heavenly Mountain Resort, Aaron Pearlman of Northstar California Resort and Chad Cleaves of Kirkwood Mountain Resort will represent the Tahoe area and be honored in Breckenridge, Colo., on an all-expenses paid trip in July, the company announced in a press release.

“This annual Epic Service program showcases employees who demonstrate exceptional guest service behaviors that drive Vail Resorts to be recognized as a leader in service to our external and internal guests,” Blaise Carrig, president of Vail Resorts mountain division, stated in a press release. “Employees are nominated by their peers for displaying exceptional service — this year we had about 1,500 nominations, nearly double the submissions from 2012, the program’s inaugural year.”

Jackson helped one family’s matriarch celebrate her 75th birthday tubing with 15 of her family members. They started their day with a wonderful gondola ride and, as she turned to face the mountain, Jackson welcomed her and offered her a complimentary tube ride. He personally escorted her to the top of the hill, gave her some one-on-one instructions, reassured her, and led the whole staff team in singing “Happy Birthday” before she tubed down the hill.

Pearlman was recognized for helping a guest find a lost wedding ring. After a fun Super Bowl weekend in Northstar, a guest realized that his wedding ring was missing. The ring wasn’t an ordinary one; the guest’s father had given him some old Morgan silver dollars just days before he passed away from a long battle with Leukemia when the guest had been 13. When he got married the previous year, he’d had one of the coins made into his wedding ring. When Pearlman, of Northstar’s Cross Country Center, learned about the lost ring he told the guest that he would do everything he could to locate the lost ring. After a long initial search which came up short, Pearlman returned to the cross-country area to canvas the trails again. With a touch of luck and his own persistence, Pearlman found the ring tucked away under the snow.

Cleaves was honored for helping a guest find chains for a rental car to get through the snow. A senior citizen from New York rented an economy car from a discount car rental company when he arrived in Reno. He made the drive over the winding road to Kirkwood and became a regular at the Wall Bar, where he met Cleaves, a Kirkwood mountain dining employee. At the end of the week, the guest told Cleaves he was supposed to drive back to Reno the next day, but chain controls would make this impossible because the rental car didn’t come with any. After his shift, Cleaves found the guest’s car, got his tire size, drove to multiple auto parts stores in Tahoe, many of which were sold out, bought chains and drove the hour back to Kirkwood during the storm to install them — all without the guest’s knowledge. The guest made it back to Reno safely.

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