From left to right: Thane B., our Assistant Director of Security; Pete T., our Managing Director; Diana B., our Employee of the Year; Carol C. ,our Manager of the Year; Penny C., our Food and Beverage Director; and Gerald G., our Director of Safety, Security and Risk Management.

If you replied to our online survey after your stay in 2022 to recognize a Wilderness employee or manager for a job well done, THANK YOU.

Guests’ comments are compiled monthly, and together with our directors’ input, one employee is honored. Then once a year we select the “Manager of the Year” and “Employee of the Year” for having the ultimate “can-do-it” attitude and for exceeding guest expectations.

The 2022 “Manager of the Year” was Carol C., who has been a Wilderness at the Smokies team member since 2017. As a food and beverage manager, Carol is responsible for managing the operations for the F&B Outlets throughout the resort.  Along with leading and developing her team, Carol is responsible for providing excellent customer service to our guests, ordering and maintaining inventory, budgeting, training and making sure all health & safety rules and regulations are being followed.

According to her team members, “Carol is trustworthy and we can count on her for anything. She is always trying to improve her department with continued training to ensure great customer service and that we are ready for anything.  Carol is always keeping us in the loop with daily reminders, so when it’s time to face the day, we are prepared.”

Carol has been in the food industry since she was 14 years old. She started her journey at Dairy Queen, then worked at Walmart, Olive Garden, Reel Concessions and Wendy’s. She lives in Kodak and is a Sunday school teacher at Beech Springs Baptist Church, Kodak.

Carol was awarded a PTO Day; a two-night stay at a hotel in Charleston, SC; a ghost tour excursion in Charleston, SC; a $250 bonus; a $100 gift card; dinner for two at Camp Social or Hidden Trail; four tickets to Anakeesta; and a $20 Wilderness at the Smokies gift card.

The 2022 Employee of the Year was Diana B., who has been a Security Dispatcher with the resort since 2013. In this position, she is responsible for keeping logs for security, conducting monthly radio audits, keeping an eye on the weather, watching security cameras for all properties and taking internal and external calls. Benge started in the resort’s laundry department before transferring to a PBX operator and then onto security dispatch where she has been the last seven years. She lives in Sevierville.

According to her team members, “Diana is a great asset to the company.  She always has a smile on her face and greets everyone she meets.  She likes to keep busy and goes above and beyond to help keep her department organized, clean and in order. Diana is detailed orientated and will jump in and help where needed, even if it’s in another department.”

Diana B. received a PTO day; a two-night stay in Gatlinburg; A Great Smoky Mountain Railroad Train Excursion; a $250 bonus; a $50 gift card; dinner for two at Camp Social or Hidden Trail; and four tickets to Gatlinburg Skylift Park.

We’d like to congratulate Carol C. and Diana B. for a job well down.