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Rising Stars from Co Antrim announced at Hospitality Exchange

NI Hotels Federation outgoing President Stephen Meldrum is pictured with the Rising Star Award Recipients.

Hospitality Exchange 2022 returned to the Crowne Plaza Belfast this month. The two-day conference was hosted by Pamela Ballantine and the Northern Ireland Hotels Federation (NIHF).


Hotel members, along with suppliers and supporters of the industry, came together at the Crowne Plaza to hear from the experts.


The Northern Ireland Hotels Federation was delighted to announce the lucky recipients of a Rising Star Award for 2022. The winners were nominated by hotels and accommodation providers who recognise these individuals career progression to date, their contribution to each business and their future career trajectory. 


Megan Wright, Group Revenue Manager, Galgorm Collection, Ballymena.

Stephen Meldrum, outgoing President of Northern Ireland Hotels Federation, said:

“Attracting talented people is an integral part of the hotel’s sector success and I think we have all recognised the growing importance of their contribution. This is an industry with incredible opportunities and one where you can progress through the ranks, gaining experience and qualifications along the way. It is vital that we highlight this along with the diversity of roles, transferable skills, and a well renumerated career path. Without skilled and dedicated staff, we would struggle to deliver a great customer experience and engage with guests.


“The Federation has rebranded its suite of rewards under the Key Awards umbrella, with each category recognising and rewarding the excellent people we employ.  People are without doubt the key to our success and the new rising star category seeks to highlight those who have shown dedication to date and who have much to contribute to the future.


“The nine stars are representative of the diversity of opportunities available, covering everything from reception to housekeeping, and digital management. There was an exceptionally high standard and I congratulate all those who have been recognised as a rising star as part of the 23rd Hospitality Exchange.”


Helen Carton, Supervisor, Fullerton Arms, Ballintoy.

Speaking at the event Economy Minister Gordon Lyons said:

“It is a pleasure to be part of today’s event to acknowledge the talent and contribution of the rising stars within the tourism and hospitality industry and I applaud everyone’s efforts. One of our greatest strengths is our people working in the sector who genuinely welcome visitors from near and far, going the extra mile so that they enjoy their time here.


“Judging by the number of events and speaking engagements I have had the pleasure of attending, as well as getting out to experience tourism projects on the ground, the tourism industry is undoubtedly gearing up for a return to growth and success in the years ahead and there is a good deal of optimism and ambition in the sector.”


Organised by the Northern Ireland Hotels Federation, the Rising Stars for 2022 are:


  • David McMullan, Food & Beverage Manager, Best Western Plus White Horse Hotel, Derry-Londonderry

  • Katie Beaton, Assistant Conference & Banqueting Manager, Bishop’s Gate Hotel, Derry-Londonderry

  • Pedro Silva, Restaurant Manager, Bullitt Hotel, Belfast

  • Seamus Morgan, Bar Manager, Canal Court Hotel, Newry

  • Yasmine Peacock, Front Office Shift Leader, Fitzwilliam Hotel, Belfast

  • Helen Carton, Supervisor, Fullerton Arms, Ballintoy

  • Megan Wright, Group Revenue Manager, Galgorm Collection, Ballymena

  • Matthew McRoberts, Digital Marketing Manager, Hastings Hotel Group

  • Jordan Sloan, Assistant Bar Manager, Titanic Hotel, Belfast


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