2016 ECE Retreat Recap + Awards

As a growing company with fourteen offices located from Atlanta to NYC, it isn’t often that we find ourselves all in the same room. However, every other year, each ECE office comes together for a couple of days to commune at a company-wide retreat.

The 2016 ECE Retreat was held last week in Richmond, VA. While it’s a special occasion any time we have everyone all together, this retreat was especially extraordinary. We culminated the celebration of our 40th anniversary by converging upon our founding city for two days of laughter, fun and conversation.

The theme of our retreat was “Honoring the past. Building for the future.” This theme was woven throughout all retreat activities and sessions. In celebrating our 40th anniversary, it has been important for us to recognize our history and the individuals who have built ECE into what it is today. The ECE story is a cool one, and we are so proud to have a history rich in innovation, integrity and honesty.

Equally as exciting as where our company has been is where we are headed. We couldn’t be more thrilled as we sit on the cusp of launching our next 40 years. Our success is collaborative. We wouldn’t be where we are without our amazing clients, our talented artists and our dedicated employees.

On November 21, we honored our rockstar employees and two very special artists at the ECE Awards Dinner. The sit-down dinner was held at Sam Miller’s Restaurant in downtown Richmond.   The night began by recognizing employees who had reached a milestone in the number of years they have been at ECE.

5 YEARS OF SERVICE

Scott Toole, Doug Daniel, Ellie Schwarz, Diane LaBonte, Scott Haynes

L to R: Scott Toole, Doug Daniel, Ellie Schwarz, Diane LaBonte and Scott Haynes

10 YEARS OF SERVICE

L to R: Kevin Greene, Lydia Sanchez, Matthew Thomas, Chris McClure and Doug Daniel.

L to R: Kevin Greene, Lydia Sanchez, Matthew Thomas, Chris McClure and Doug Daniel.

15 YEARS OF SERVICE

L to R: Terry Evans, Doug Daniel and Jack Shannon. Not pictured: Lea Wren.

L to R: Terry Evans, Doug Daniel and Jack Shannon. Not pictured: Lea Wren.

20 YEARS OF SERVICE

Front row: Doug Baker, Kris Kaminski. Back row: John Wolfslayer, Mark Letson, Rick Stowe, Doug Daniel and Barry Herndon.

Back row: John Wolfslayer, Mark Letson, Rick Stowe, Doug Daniel and Barry Herndon. Front row: Doug Baker and Kris Kaminski.

30 YEARS OF SERVICE

L to R: Doug Daniel, Larry Farber, Toni Cline, Steve Harry and Ed Duncan.

L to R:  Doug Daniel, Larry Farber, Toni Cline, Steve Harry and Ed Duncan.

Next, employees were recognized for their lifetime sales achievements.

LIFETIME SALES EXCEEDING $1 MILLION

L to R: Doug Daniel, Kevin Greene, Ellie Schwarz, Toni Cline, Chris McClure, Clint Robins and Jack Shannon.

L to R:  Doug Daniel, Kevin Greene, Ellie Schwarz, Toni Cline, Chris McClure, Clint Robins and Jack Shannon.

LIFETIME SALES EXCEEDING $2 MILLION

L to R: Terry Evans, ECE Atlanta LMD Rick Stowe, CEO Doug Daniel and Matthew Thomas.

L to R: Terry Evans, Rick Stowe, Doug Daniel and Matthew Thomas.

LIFETIME SALES EXCEEDING $3 MILLION

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L to R: Doug Baker and Doug Daniel

The next awards went to two very special artists.

ECE EXCLUSIVE ARTIST ACHIEVEMENT: TOP GROSSING BAND

L to R: Doug Daniel and Dennis Smith (Party On The Moon)

L to R: Doug Daniel and Dennis Smith (Party On The Moon)

ECE EXCLUSIVE ARTIST ACHIEVEMENT: 40 YEAR LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT

L to R: Kenny Mann (Liquid Pleasure) and Doug Daniel

L to R: Kenny Mann (Liquid Pleasure) and Doug Daniel

The final two awards presented were the cherished Sheryl Benson and Dennis Huber awards. ECE’s legacy is rich with individuals who have been both inspiring, visionary leaders and models of integrity and honesty. Two of which, Dennis Huber and Sheryl Benson, set the bar so high with their attributes, ECE continues to honor them at company retreats by recognizing current employees who exemplify their admirable qualities. These awards are nominated and voted on by the employees of ECE.

The Sheryl Benson award was designed to honor and pay tribute to a great lady who was a solid and passionate advocate for ECE and our work here. In the 1980’s, Sheryl was one of the few female agents working in a predominantly male industry. On Leap Day in 1988, she broke new ground for ECE by becoming our first female agent. Over the course of her 23-year career at ECE, her counsel and advice was sought by everyone in the company, agents and artists alike.

Words that we have gathered from others to describe Sheryl and her character are: dedicated, artist-focused, great listener, ethical, unselfish, strong, thorough, moral, positive, tireless, respectful, respected, professional, knowledgeable, honest, sincere, of high integrity. This award is presented to an ECE employee who best exemplifies these qualities. Sheryl’s daughter and ECE partner, Kris Kaminski presented this special award to Diane LaBonte.

2016 SHERYL BENSON AWARD – DIANE LABONTEawardparty-93awardparty-95

The Dennis Huber award honors our founder who for many years was the heartbeat, soul and conscience of ECE. Born out of Dennis’s vision, creativity and drive, our company has become one-of-a-kind in our industry. Over forty years ago when ECE was just an idea, Dennis set us on a path and showed us that passion, hard work, and innovation could create something that many years later provides a wonderful career and so much enjoyment.

This award is presented to an ECE employee or artist who best exemplifies the qualities of leadership, integrity, honesty and hard work that we knew and admired in Dennis.

We were honored to have the Huber family join us for the awards dinner. Dennis’s daughter, Hannah, presented the award to Toni Cline.

2016 DENNIS HUBER AWARD – TONI CLINE
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The remainder of the evening was spent eating, conversing and celebrating! Below are a few additional photos from the event. We especially want to give a special thanks to the vendors who helped make not only this night, but our entire retreat beautiful and organized.

Event Planner: Glint Events | Photographer: Jessica Maida Photography | Florals: Petals and Twigs RVA | Rentals: AFR Rentals |  Dessert Bar: Sweet Fix | Hotel: Courtyard Marriott Richmond Downtown | Screen Printed Swag: Ink Floyd | Welcome Party Venue: 7 Hills Brewing Co | Awards Dinner Venue: Sam Miller’s Restaurant | After Party Venue: Sine Irish Pub

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