Ford earns top
David Ford of Mississippi Bend Area Education Agency, Bettendorf, has been chosen as School Counseling Advocate of the Year by the The Iowa School Counselor Association.
While Ford’s work as the director of AEA PREP is notable, his advocacy for school counselors pre-dates the creation of PREP. He is a former school counselor and school counselor leader, which has aided in his work with the AEA.
He is constantly advocating for understanding the school counselor’s role and he is also careful to demonstrate that college and career readiness is not the lone job of the school counselor.
Mentor of the Year
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Chef Michael Gabrielson, or "Chef Gabe," has been honored by the Iowa Restaurant Association as the 2019 Mentor of the Year for his desire to build future culinary talent.
After suffering a traumatic brain injury in the Army and recovering for two years, Gabrielson went to college and graduated with an Associate’s Degree in Culinary Arts, Food Service Management and Hospitality-Tourism Management, the association said in a news release.
He worked in upscale restaurants and private clubs and owned his own establishment, before landing the role as Chef De Cuisine at the Isle Hotel Casino and Convention Center, Bettendorf.
In this job he became connected with the Davenport ProStart program and began serving as a mentor for the Davenport high school culinary team. He appreciates the exposure it provides students, but also the opportunity he has to showcase the industry.
Hudson named 2019
Employee of the Year
Emily Hudson, of Hemispheres Bistro in Bettendorf, has been honored as the Iowa Restaurant Association's Employee of the Year for her commitment to the industry, as well as her team and every guest experience.
According to the association, Hudson is quick to share how Hemisphere's Bistro takes great care to offer its guests an exceptional experience with every service, every plate and every pour. All who work with her agree that Emily is at the heart of it all, the association said in a news relase.
The locally-owned restaurant opened four years ago and allows guests to virtually build their own dining experiences by selecting dishes, sauces, cooking techniques and pairings with flavors influenced by India, Asia, Italy, and France.