29 Apr Travel Leaders Bestows Both of its Most Prestigious Awards on Bonnie and Walter Lee of Albertville, Minnesota
Owners of the Travel Leaders agency in Albertville honored with the “Golden Legacy” lifetime achievement award and the “Associate of the Year” award.
Orlando, FL (April 29, 2017) — Today, Albertville, Minnesota-based Travel Leaders Associates Bonnie and Walter Lee, were honored as the best among hundreds of Travel Leaders (www.travelleaders.com) travel agency locations nationally. The couple received both of Travel Leaders’ highest honors – the “Golden Legacy” award and the “Associate of the Year” award. The first is for their lifetime achievements in best exemplifying the international franchise system’s entrepreneurial spirit and highest quality standards, while the second epitomizes excellence in service to clients and for their effective use of the Travel Leaders brand – specifically over the course of the past year. The honors were bestowed during a special ceremony at the 2017 Travel Leaders International Conference taking place at Loews Royal Pacific Resort at Universal Orlando.
“Bonnie and Walt Lee have taken Travel Leaders Albertville from a start-up business to a thriving enterprise that has $65 million in annual sales, while creating an environment that is inclusive of younger talent that is new to the travel industry,” stated Roger E. Block, CTC, President of Travel Leaders Network, America’s largest retail travel agency company. “Additionally, the Lees have dedicated a significant amount of time in providing some of their best practices in host agency management to their Travel Leaders peers. They also provide stellar service to their clients before, during and after each trip. I am very proud to honor them with both our Associate of the Year award and our prestigious Golden Legacy award.”
The Lees, who started their predominantly leisure travel focused agency in their basement in the 1990s, have built an extremely successful business in large part by serving the needs of travelers seeking destination weddings and honeymoons. In addition to the full-time travel agents working in their Albertville location, they have also built a business model that specializes in hosting and mentoring Independent Contractors (ICs) across the country that has grown to 822 ICs. That represents a 73 percent increase since 2013, when they last were named Travel Leaders’ Associate of the Year. Since then, Travel Leaders Albertville has increased its sales volume more 30 percent.
The Lees are continually adding programs and resources for their ICs, including an annual workshop series at their own national convention. It works as both a recruitment tool and professional development opportunity. Last year, 140 ICs attended, up from 96 the year before.
“Bonnie and Walt emphasize hosting good people, with great personalities and a passion for travel, who are willing to learn the travel agency business, as well as how to be a successful entrepreneur. They understand that their patience in teaching and training the next generation will benefit their business in the long term,” added Block. “Even though their operations are getting larger every year, they still amazingly maintain intimate business relationships with the agents they host.”
Travel Leaders’ highest honor is the Golden Legacy Award celebrating the lifetime achievements of the
Travel Leaders Associate (franchisee). In order to be considered for the Associate of the Year award, Bonnie and Walter Lee first had to earn Travel Leaders’ “Agency of Excellence” award. Only 25 franchisees nationally were honored with that distinction in 2017. To earn the “Agency of Excellence” award, Travel Leaders agencies are scored in several categories that reflect business growth; utilization of marketing programs to effectively reach local consumers; participation in key local and national business networking meetings, and in training programs to enhance service to their clients, as well as their overall promotion of the Travel Leaders brand.
Travel Leaders Albertville is located at 5985 Large Ave NE, in Albertville, MN. To learn more about Bonnie, go here. To contact Travel Leaders Albertville, call 763-497-0312 or visit their website: http://www.travelleaders.com/albertvillemn. “Travel Better” with Travel Leaders.
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About Travel Leaders Network
Travel Leaders Network assists millions of leisure and business travelers, annually, and is the largest seller of luxury travel, cruises, river cruises and tours in the travel agency industry. Led by flagship Travel Leaders-branded travel agencies (www.travelleaders.com), the network includes nearly 7,000 Associates and Member travel agencies locations in the United States and Canada and represents more than $17 billion in annual sales volume. Travel Leaders Network’s award-winning Agent Profiler agent-locator, marketing, technology, supplier partnerships and educational programs are designed around our travel agents’ commitment to our vacation and business travel clients in providing a progressive approach toward each unique travel experience. Travel Leaders Network is a Travel Leaders Group LLC company.