Pagliacci Pizza's Core Value Awards: Honoring Excellence

Every year, at a company dinner event called the Annual Luncheon At Night (years ago, it actually was a luncheon), Pagliacci Pizza honors a select few outstanding crew members for job excellence. Over great food and a presentation reviewing the past year and looking forward to the next, the highpoint is the award ceremony. Nothing exemplifies the excellence Pagliacci Pizza strives for more than the Core Value Award winners listed below.

Tyrone Award: Molly Wakenshaw, General Manager, Ballinger
 

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The Tyrone Award, named for Tyrone Fabroa, a beloved employee who died tragically in 2011, is the highest honor given annually to any Pagliacci Pizza employee. Tyrone's devotion to mentoring and supporting his crew made him a beloved manager, and the eponymous award honors someone whose work mirrors the exceptional qualities and dedication to Pagliacci that Tyrone embodied every day. This year’s winner is Molly Wakenshaw. Molly started working for Pagliacci in 2008 at Ballinger and has worked as the general manager at both our Madison and Columbia City stores. In 2017, she returned to Ballinger as the general manager. She says, “For me, the Tyrone Award is always a very emotional part of the luncheon. It brings back lots of memories of the time I spent working with Tyrone. As soon as Steve said this person has worked for Pagliacci for 11 years, I knew it was me. I was very surprised, honored, proud and speechless. It is by far my proudest moment working with Pagliacci so far. It still hasn’t quite sunk in yet.”

Always Delivering Excellence Award: Stone Way
 

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Stone Way opened in 1992 as Pagliacci Pizza’s second delivery kitchen. In 2013, we gave it a complete overhaul, adding a much bigger kitchen, a spacious new dining room and a slice bar. Jon Obrycki, General Manager, says, “The recognition is something the store is stoked on. We have a great team at Stone Way that cares about doing things right. Just having people that care and have the drive to be good helped us win the award.”

Respect and Care for Employees: Alice Strassburger, 145th Shift Lead
 

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Alice Strassburger has worked at the 145th location in North Seattle since early 2017. She immediately impressed everyone with her customer service skills, and she quickly earned a promotion to shift leader. Alice pushes the crew, shouting encouragement during busy times. She’ll take anyone interested in taking on more responsibility under her wing, and help them get there. Jackie Reynolds, General Manager, says, “Alice is our unofficial cheerleader. She is sincere in everything she does. She makes this place feel like family.”

Service Beyond Expectations – Dusty Amans, West Seattle Driver Lead and Shift Lead
 

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Dusty Amans started with Pagliacci Pizza in 2013. Over the years he has filled many vital roles at Pagliacci. His present position is an unusual hybrid, a job for which he is specially qualified. Pierce Faulkner, his General Manager, says, “Dusty is a rockstar up front and seems to know almost everyone who comes in the front door. He makes everyone feel special in their own way. While on the road, he is always delivering excellence with a bright, shining smile.”

Tirelessly Seek to Improve: Jeff Woodruff, Vice President of Operations
 

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Jeff Woodruff started at Pagliacci Pizza in 1995 and was promoted to District Manager in 2006, Director of Operations in 2007 and VP of Operations in 2011. Since stepping into a leadership role, Jeff has overseen tremendous changes all with an eye toward improving what we do and how we do it. Of winning the award, Jeff says, “I’ve never won a Core Value Award, and I was totally surprised. It’s often said that we can improve at recognizing how people contribute and I certainly don’t do this enough. Even rarer is recognition that works its way up. Learning that someone I manage suggested that I should win an award means a tremendous amount to me.”

Tirelessly Seek to Improve: Mike Young, General Manager Columbia City

Mike Young started working for Pagliacci Pizza tour Miller store when he was 15. After finishing high school, he moved to full time. Youthful as he was, he quickly proved his worth and was instrumental in helping us open our stores in Madison Park and on Main Street in Bellevue. Before moving to Columbia City in May of 2017, Mike was General Manager at 145th. Of winning a Core Value Award, his third over the years, Mike says, “Running a relatively new store like Columbia City gave me new challenges and new opportunities. I’m honored and humbled by the award.”

Fanatical About Quality: Sam Eisenhood, Catering Manager
 

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When Sam Eisenhood started in customer service at Pagliacci in 2002 to supplement his nighttime gig working in nightclubs like Showbox Sodo, he thought he’d be a short-termer. But he liked the work and the people, and our customers loved him. When the job of Catering Manager opened up in 2011, Sam took over. Under his guidance, it has grown into a significant part of Pagliacci’s operations. Sam says, “The people managing the stores at Pagliacci are really dedicated. That makes my job easy. When I’m selling 30 pizzas to an office in a downtown high-rise, and I promise it’ll be there by noon, I say it with great confidence because of the people I work with.”

Do the Right Thing: Hannah Dinan, Stone Way Assistant Manager
 

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Hannah Dinan started with Pagliacci Pizza in 2015 and has been a huge part of Stone Way's success. Even during stressful shifts, she keeps her cool and works to solve issues that come up quickly. The crew she manages are comfortable approaching her with questions and concerns because she cares and listens carefully. Her general manager, Jon Obrycki, says, “When Hannah is working I know it will be a smooth shift. She holds everyone accountable equally, and handles difficult conversations with empathy and concern.”

Do the Right Thing: Shelley McNulty, Central Office
 

Shelley McNulty started at Pagliacci Pizza in 1999 as the Marketing Assistant in a department of one. Over nearly twenty years, Shelley has helped with almost every element of Pagliacci’s operations, including managing the marketing team. Currently, Shelley does the essential behind-the-scenes work required to connect all the dots between departments, locations and employees in our rapidly growing company. Shelley says, “Dorene Centioli-McTigue, the founder, was very hands-on with marketing and I thought I might get a little bored. Six months after I started, she announced she was selling the company. Of course, I thought I’d have to look for a new job. Little did I know just how busy my job would get over the next twenty years.