2024 Isaac Hunter Award


The Isaac Hunter Excellence in Service Award recognizes frontline employees in the hospitality industry who excel in providing exceptional service to visitors, including serving as representatives of the local community and the attractions and service providers that make the destination a desirable place to visit. These individuals represent their employers’ commitment to visitor satisfaction, as well as Wake County’s desire to interact with visitors in an energizing and enriching manner.


The award is named for Isaac Hunter (1745-1823), who in 1769 opened a tavern near Crabtree Creek that became a popular stopping place for locals and visitors alike. Hunter's Tavern’s popularity led the North Carolina General Assembly Capital Site Selection Commission to locate the seat of state government within 10 miles of the tavern.

In Raleigh’s history this tavern was celebrated as a place where locals and visitors interacted with each other in a genuine and mutually appreciative manner, and it is thought to epitomize a state capital’s unique embrace of high-level public and private change-making, with high quality of life. Accordingly, the Greater Raleigh Convention and Visitors Bureau created the award in recognition of the role hospitality services play in providing memorable experiences to visitors/local residents and making this community a special place to visit and thus also a desirable place to live.

Judging criteria

Nominees are evaluated on information provided about teamwork attitude, hospitality skills, advocacy for Wake County's tourism industry and ease of communication and interaction with visitors.

Nominations for the 2024 awards closed May 28, 2024.