CX Force Awards: Empowering the Future of Customer Experience

Avaya celebrates the first-ever CX Force Awards winners: seven visionaries who are transforming customer experience across industries.

Introducing the seven inaugural CX Force Award winners! Avaya, in partnership with the International Avaya User Group (IAUG), and co-sponsored by Silicon Valley-based technology research and advisory form Constellation Research, proudly present the CX Force Awards as a program designed to spotlight and celebrate the innovators, strategists, and pioneers dedicated to reshaping the world of customer experience.


The Inaugural CX Force Awards Winners 2024

This year's winners were honored with trophies in an on-stage winner’s ceremony at Avaya ENGAGE in Denver, Colorado. See below for details on the seven CX Force Award winners, their roles and achievements, and what made them stand out to the judging panel. Thank you to all nominators and nominees who helped to make the first year of the CX Force Awards program a success! Check back later this year for updates on the 2025 edition of the CX Force Awards.

CX Force Awards Judges

The CX Force Awards winners were selected by a panel of judges including Avaya Chief Marketing Officer Josh Mueller, IAUG President Lori Wodrich, and Constellation Research Vice President and Principal Analyst Liz Miller. Each entry was assessed based on the nominee’s career achievements, innovative CX strategies, the tangible impact of their work, challenges they’ve overcome, and the role Avaya’s solutions and technology played in these accomplishments. For more information on the 2025 CX Force Awards program and winners, revisit this webpage later this year for updates.

WINNER – CX for Education:
Tara Pasalic
Systems Integration Specialist, McMaster University

Tara embodies the spirit of innovation and passion that defines the CX for Education category. Driven by her dedication to enhancing the educational experience for students, faculty, and staff, Tara took the initiative to transform McMaster University's voice communication platform. She leveraged public cloud technology to empower seamless collaboration, creating a more inclusive and engaging environment that enriches the McMaster experience. She remains dedicated to providing staff and students with the tools necessary to foster creativity, collaboration and community.

WINNER – CX for Employees:
Jayne Hogle
Director of Unified Communications, American Heart Association

The CX for Employees category points to CX leaders who not only care about the outputs of customer experiences, but also the symbiotic relationship between customer and employee experiences in driving business success. Jayne’s work showed a thoughtfulness around how employees at the American Heart Association work, and how to effectively map the systems and technology they use to meet those standards. Her passion for optimizing customer and employee experiences led to streamlined internal processes and overall business modernization at scale.

CX for Healthcare:
Rafael Sousa
Chief Technology Officer, HNIPO

CX for Healthcare focuses on the individuals pioneering patient-centric care that tangibly improves healthcare experiences. Rafael and his team pursued various technological integrations that changed both hospital operations across the communications system and extended into optimizing patient care. These initiatives powered multilingual service and engagement across the communications base, which led to faster service, reductions in wait time, speed and efficiency of their internal systems, and the impact of these internal improvements on external communications and service.

CX for Good:
Ian Cole
Chief Innovation Officer, Give Kids the World Village

CX for Good aims to spotlight an individual either in the nonprofit space or in a more service-oriented role with a CSR focus, who is positively impacting communities or citizen experiences. Ian is an active, hands-on leader in adopting new technologies that enhance the customer experiences they provide. He is passionate about advancing the mission of Give Kids the World Village forward and will never recommend a technology that does not hold true or align with the aspirations of the organization, which reflects his desire to drive positive and impactful social change.

CX for Growth:
Hugh Carr
Director of Customer Services, Standard Focus

The CX for Growth category focuses not only on the nominee’s efforts in improving customer experiences, but also the outcomes of that work and its direct impact on revenue or overall business growth. Hugh’s work at Standard Focus demonstrates strong leadership in dramatically streamlining bottom-line costs and remaining passionate about its impact on CX, all while maintaining a hands-on leadership approach across a team of 900+ agents operating contact centers in 10 locations worldwide, supporting 11 different languages and providing true omni-channel and AI solutions to customers.

CX for Transformation:
Virginie Nowak
Group Chief Customer Experience Officer, Access Bank PLC

The transformation category recognizes the individuals who steered their organizations toward success by embedding an experience-first mindset into their operations. Virginie’s efforts pushed Access Bank to innovate at a pace that is advanced for most banking institutions, which are normally slower to adopt new technologies. Her pursuit accelerated impressive results and metrics that reflect true business transformation, and her commitment to training and educating all employees to feel confident using the new tools demonstrate true CX business transformation.

Rising CX Superstar
Emily Stubbs
Director of CX, Aerflo

The Rising CX Superstar category aims to recognize an individual’s growth within the industry while looking ahead to the future and proactively pursuing opportunities to drive CX innovation. Aerflo’s Emily Stubbs showed a willingness to pursue partnerships with non-traditional departments across the organization, and to think outside of the box in her CX strategy to proactively anticipate customer needs. She also took the initiative to build a CX group from the ground up, taking a data-driven approach to kickstarting the group and solving customer problems.

About the Awards

The CX Force Awards, presented by Avaya in partnership with the International Avaya User Group (IAUG) and Constellation Research, are designed to spotlight and celebrate the innovators, strategists, and pioneers who are reshaping the world of customer experience. In a world where exceptional experiences are the cornerstone of every industry, the CX Force Awards seek to recognize those who create meaningful change and set the benchmarks for excellence.

Nomination Criteria

Nominees are evaluated based on their career achievements, innovative CX strategies, the tangible impact of their work, challenges they’ve overcome, and the role Avaya’s technology and solutions played in these accomplishments. We are seeking nominees who demonstrate a high level of innovation, creativity, and leadership within the customer experience domain, particularly those who utilize or are familiar with Avaya solutions. Inspiring personal stories, successful CSR initiatives, and any relevant anecdotes that reflect a nominee’s passion for elevating customer experiences add weight to the nomination.

FAQ and
Official Rules

Find answers to common questions and official rules about the nomination process, award categories, criteria, and more to ensure your nomination stands out. Click here for more information.

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