Normally, in May, we are gearing up for the annual FE&S Dealer of the Year and All Industry Awards Gala in Chicago. This year, that event is the furthest thing from our minds.

Our thoughts are with those directly impacted by COVID-19, from the people stricken by the illness to the first responders to the healthcare workers who, on a daily basis, bravely battle this insidious virus and provide care for the afflicted. Our thoughts are also with the unsung heroes; the grocery store and factory workers, delivery people, truck drivers, nursing home attendants and, yes, restaurant workers, whose efforts normally go unnoticed, or at the very least, get pushed to the background. The real value of those jobs is on full display as so many of them have been deemed essential to our survival as we shelter in place and limit social interaction.

Here at FE&S, we refuse to allow the pandemic to rob our 2020 award winners of their chance for the recognition that they have earned. Of course, they will receive our full coverage in the pages of FE&S.

In April we shared a great story about Harry Schildkraut, recipient of the FE&S 2020 Hall of Fame Award, as well as the five Top Achievers. The beat goes on in this issue with a profile on Mobile Fixture, the FE&S 2020 Dealer of the Year and a closer look at Camp Southern Ground, an inspiring foodservice operation that earned recognition as the FE&S 2020 Facility Design Project of the Year.

The September issue will spotlight the FE&S 2020 DSR of the Year, with bonus coverage on the runners up.

Rather than cancelling the 2020 Dealer of the Year and All Industry Awards Gala, we will roll it forward into 2021. Our hope is that many of the 2020 award winners will be able to join us May 22, 2021, to receive their much-deserved recognition on a special night at Four Seasons Hotel Chicago, alongside next year’s DSR nominees and FE&S award winners.

The approach might be a little unconventional, but we think it only makes sense to recognize these contributions and acknowledge them with a special celebration, once it again becomes possible to do so.

So, here’s to that glorious day!