(INDIANAPOLIS) – Todd Walker is an important reason why the Indianapolis International Airport (IND) has been recognized by some of the most prestigious organizations – and most importantly millions of passengers – as a world-class airport and the Best Airport in North America. In fact, his passionate approach to serving others landed him a Hoosier Hospitality Award last Friday from Lt. Governor Suzanne Crouch and the Indiana Office of Tourism Development.
Walker, assistant manager of the Terminal Services department at the Indy airport, was nominated for the award with the support of several employees and his direct supervisor. They recognized Walker for his daily push to “create an exciting atmosphere” for Indianapolis Airport Authority staff and airport passengers alike. That attitude is reflected in the cleanliness of the terminal, welcoming guests to special events held at the airport and transforming the terminal into a winter wonderland for the annual Holly Jolly Jetway event for Santa’s preview arrival each November.
“Todd is an all-around leader whose work personifies what we mean when we say public value,” said Mario Rodriguez, executive director of the Indianapolis Airport Authority. “Seven years in a row IND has been recognized as Best Airport in North America, and Todd is a key asset in making that happen by ensuring passengers are having an excellent customer experience.”
In addition to making sure his team has all the resources they need to serve passengers 365 days a year, he rolls up his shirt sleeves to work shoulder to shoulder with his staff.
“You can find Todd assisting passengers with luggage or directing them to the appropriate concourse, baggage claim or rental car area,” his staff wrote. “Todd is committed to providing exceptional customer service to every department in the terminal, no matter the time of day you call him – he’s there ready to make a difference.”
But to drive the kind of success the Indy airport has experienced, it takes a team effort – and Walker exemplifies what it means to be a servant leader.
Walker and his family come to the airport each holiday to prepare food for IAA staff who are scheduled to work – a time when many people have the day off. The tradition started several years back when Walker first provided the holiday meals with his own money and prepared them on his own time. His staff said it’s not unusual to find Walker at IAA all-employee luncheons and events acting as grill master over the meal or serving plates of food to employees in the breakroom.
Walker’s attitude and commitment to making the Indy airport and staff the best they can have also earned him several IAA Core Values Award for his leadership contributions. IAA Core Value Awards are given to IAA employees for their outstanding performance for providing excellent customer service – the kind that keeps the Indy airport honored throughout North America.
“Todd is highly valued throughout IND, but it’s rewarding to see him recognized by the Lt. Governor and the State for exemplifying Indiana’s unique brand – Hoosier Hospitality,” said Rodriguez.
The Hoosier Hospitality Awards recognize a high level of service in tourism-related jobs at hotels, restaurants, attractions and other destinations. This award is given annually to front-line staff members who exemplify Hoosier Hospitality.
For more information on the 2019 Hoosier Hospitality Award recipients, please visit: https://www.visitindianatourism.com/node/408.