Boot Pro ski tuner wins Ski Business award
By Christian Avard
Staff Writer | January 19,2013
CHRISTIAN AVARD / STAFF FILE PHOTO
The Boot Pro ski shop manager Randy Haskell tunes a pair of Kastle MX 88’s for a long-time customer.
LUDLOW — Randy Haskell of Chester got the email he was waiting for this week.
Skiing Business informed The Boot Pro ski tuner that he was selected for the Ski Business Shop Hero award. The award goes to ski shop employees who go above and beyond to provide excellent customer service.
Winners are determined by the number of votes cast. Haskell was the top vote-getter with 505 votes followed by Brian Hearld of Crystal Mountain Sports in Thompsonville, Mich., with 450 votes and James “Jamie” Georgelos of the Alpin Haus Ski Shop in Amsterdam and Clifton Park, N.Y., with 349 votes.
The top three vote-getters receive an all-expenses-paid ski trip to Park City Mountain Resort, new ski gear and a National Ski Shop Hero title. Haskell, Hearld and Georgelos will also be recognized at the Ski Industry Association Snow Show in Denver, Colo., on Jan. 31.
Haskell was excited, but humble, upon receiving the award.
“Everyone was elated at the shop (here in Ludlow). The customers came in and asked about it or they checked online. It was an incredible morale booster for the whole shop,” Haskell said.
This is Skiing Business’ second year of hosting the award and the first time that a New Englander and Vermonter was named the top winner, Ryan Dionne said. The Boot Pro owner Shon Racicot and co-workers Matt Tripp and Matt Reeves nominated Haskell for the award.
The finalists submit a video explaining why they deserve the award. Voting began Dec. 20 and closed Jan. 10.
Dionne said people from all over rallied for Haskell. Many of them also wrote positive comments on the voting website in support of his nomination.
“They wrote things like, ‘Randy is the best boot fitter’ and ‘He deserves the award so much,’” Dionne said. “It’s great for us to be able to recognize those employees when we know they don’t make a lot of money, they’re doing it because they love the sport and working with people. This is our way to give back to those people with more than just a paycheck.”
Haskell has been in the alpine ski business for 29 years. He got his start at Norse House Ski and Sport in Bondville, tuned skis for the pros, and worked at Northern Ski Works in Ludlow.
Haskell has been service manager at The Boot Pro for two years. He plans to go on his all-expenses-paid vacation to Park City in February.