ARDA finalists july

In April 2023, Grand Pacific Resorts was proud to send 20 contenders to the esteemed American Resort Development Association (ARDA) Conference held in Orlando, Florida. This annual event serves as a platform for recognizing the outstanding achievements and excellence exhibited by professionals and programs in the timeshare industry. It was an extraordinary occasion for Grand Pacific Resorts and our Associates, four of which took home awards for their service and contributions.

To celebrate the exceptional accomplishments of our talented finalists, we are thrilled to present a series of blog posts featuring them throughout the year. This month, we shine the spotlight on three of our remarkable Associates: Kelly Carnell, Maya McLaughlin, and Mike Jaeger! Keep reading below to see their nominations as presented for their ARDA finalist positions.

Kelly Carnell – Front Desk Supervisor at Red Wolf Lakeside Lodge

kelly carnell

Our devoted Front Desk Supervisor is passionate about her Team and enriching the Owner and Guest vacation experience. Kelly has been in her role for 22 years and has been a tremendous reason that Red Wolf Lakeside Lodge has ranked in the top two properties in our family of resorts. She has been Employee of the Year five times and is truly loved by everyone. Although Kelly frequently overcomes obstacles in her role with eager determination, one of her primary challenges is simply getting to work. To reach her resort in the mountains of Lake Tahoe, Kelly has to commute through one of the tallest highway passes in the country, driving at least 45 minutes each way. One morning, when a tree crashed down on her car, Kelly rushed to get a replacement windshield and still reported to work on time. Anyone else would have taken the day off, but Kelly did not want to let her Team down. Kelly also oversees the Front Desk, Activities Program and handles the onboarding and training of new Associates. This includes providing guest services and financial literacy training for all of our Tahoe-area resorts. Kelly is an active listener, skillful communicator, and is always working to improve her training methods. She is a major reason Red Wolf Lakeside Lodge has a 5% or lower delinquency rate on maintenance fees. She personally reaches out to past-due Owners, encouraging them to share their struggles, while also booking them a complimentary 2-night stay. This strategy has re-engaged many Owners, resulting in significantly greater revenue from maintenance fees, positively impacting the budget, and making Owners happy again. Thank you Kelly!

Maya McLaughlin – Rooms Control Manager at the Hilton Grand Vacations Club® at MarBrisa

maya mclaughlin

Maya quickly worked through the ranks of Grand Pacific Resorts. She started as a Front Desk Agent, then was promoted to Supervisor, and now is a Rooms Control Manager. She is exceptional with Owners and immediately develops a rapport with them. When our resort lost its night auditor, Maya took over the position for an entire year until we could hire someone for the position. Not only did she have to adjust to working an overnight shift (11:15 p.m. to 6:00 a.m.), but during that time she also revamped the night audit program. When the new hire came onboard, Maya handed her a seamless program to follow. Maya is back to her day-to-day work, managing inventory and keeping track of Out of Service rooms. Our Owner feedback describes Maya best: 

“The Front Desk at check-in was exceptionally easy to work with. Maya was so pleasant. Even though our room wasn’t ready, she made the wait pleasant. We were extremely satisfied with Maya’s attention and happy attitude.”

“I needed water at 3 a.m. Maya was the only one working, and she went out of her way to make sure I got bottled water and had housekeeping deliver me additional waters the next morning. Maya is in tune with Owners and their needs, you need to keep this one!”

“I loved the property; the team was so nice and accommodating. Maya, the Overnight Manager, helped me with my computer issues. She stopped the work she was doing and sat with me for over an hour to get my emails up. I had an important meeting the next morning. She made my stress levels decrease 10-fold.”

Mike Jaeger: Preventative Maintenance Supervisor at the Hilton Grand Vacations Club® at MarBrisa

mike jaeger

Supremely skilled Mike has been with Grand Pacific Resorts for over two years, bringing a wealth of experience in construction, plumbing, and electrical remediation to his position. This disabled Marine Corps veteran, who served in Iraq, is certified in mold, asbestos, and lead remediation. Before joining us, he was part of a three-person water intrusion team at Camp Pendleton that managed 7,000 housing units. Today, he is Preventive Maintenance Supervisor for our 366-unit resort, with three and four-story buildings on 55 acres. Mike oversees our preventive maintenance program with a team of four, working in tandem with the property’s 15-person maintenance team. Mike was the first to tackle the resort’s water issues, using his certification, experience, and knowledge in this field. He also took a deep dive into the HVAC issues and began to identify problem units, conducting entire remediation and build-backs himself, often using all his trade skills in plumbing, electrical, drywall, and painting. He  inspected kitchen appliances, cleaned coils, gaskets, pulled all sink traps, and ensured that they were clear. Mike reviewed things others would never have given a second thought to. He identifies issues and fixes problems, resulting in the elimination of 70-85% of all our concerns within the first year. Mike is a dedicated leader, has superb work ethic, never complains, and takes on the most challenging tasks with a passion for success. He is always solution-oriented, very balanced, calm in the midst of chaos, and constantly looking out for the health of the resort, all of which earned him Associate of the Year.