Pictured left to right: Jason Harris (Spirit of Service winner), Melody Fenton (Do Gooder of the Year winner) and Bruce Brady (Legacy Award winner)
Blue employees honored with prestigious awards
Each year, the Blue family gets together to celebrate a year of employees working hard, having fun and winning for our members. The event is something we all look forward to because it’s a chance to connect with coworkers we don’t normally see on a daily basis. The energy and laughter makes it clear to anyone why we choose to work at Blue.
After some fun and the infamous “Blue-per” awards, all our staff settles in for the awards ceremony which honored three, wonderful employees. We are very pleased to announce our employee recipients of the Spirit of Service, the Do Gooder, and the Legacy Award of the Year.
Spirit of Service
This is an absolutely amazing award. Not just because of what it represents, but also because the finalists are nominated by their fellow colleagues.
What is the Spirit of Service Award?
Each year we award ONE Blue employee with the Spirit of Service Award. The Spirit of Service Award was dedicated to a former employee, Linda Oligschlager. Linda was a member of the Blue team from 1997 until 2000, when Blue’s shining star lost her battle with cancer. Linda O. as she was affectionately known, was the epitome of “Service that Matters.” Always smiling, whether it was on the phone or face to face, she touched so many with a genuine smile, a warm hello and sincere concern. Every day was a good day with many unaware of the daily struggle she dealt with. The Spirit of Service was created to honor team members who. Like Linda, strive to ‘care’ for others, ‘share’ and give their best effort, to be ‘fair’ in their dealings, be ‘there’ in heart and spirit and be ‘square’ and hold onto the positive.
Our Spirit of Service Committee, which is made up of past recipients, evaluates each nominee on the five points of what it takes to be a “shining star. It is an incredibly tough decision to determine the winner.
This year’s Spirit of Service went to our 1st Mortgage Officer, Jason Harris.
Jason was speechless when he won the 2019 Spirit of Service award. He said he never thought he would be the winner out of such great nominees, so he didn’t prepare a speech and said it is a humbling experience.
Our Spirit of Service finalists are staff well-known in our communities, and we want to make sure we recognize them. The 2019 nominees were:
Michelle Troutner (eServices Manager)
Lyndsay Stahl (Regional Director)
Mason Hearn (Financial Specialist, 7th Ave. Branch)
Jason Harris (1st Mortgage Officer)
Jason Harris is pictured here receiving the award for 2019. "Jason blew us away with his way over the top service."
Do Gooder of the Year
If you haven’t heard about Blue’s “do good” mantra, just ask any of our employees. Last year, the credit union introduced a new award that represented employee volunteerism at the credit union.
While this award was introduced in 2017, volunteering is not something new to Blue. In 2018 alone, our employees logged 2,782 hours of volunteer time. That’s the equivalent of 115 days of doing good for others. Last year’s first-ever recipient, Megan Mordahl, mentioned this isn’t just an accolade, but rather how she lives.
At our awards banquet, Megan passed the torch to this year’s Do Gooder of the Year, Melody Fenton. Melody is our culture coach and personally logged 107 hours of volunteer time over the past 12 months. One of her most notable community contributions is her “queen duty” at Cheyenne Frontier Days. Melody accompanies rodeo queens (think of them as western heritage royalty!) from all over the world for a full week. She ensures that they make it to appearances on time and their needs are met. She’s also been seen in other communities like Laramie, WY for the Realities For Children Forever Family Ride and feeding firefighters during a local appreciation event. Melody said her favorite volunteer activities are in her hometown community.
“I love spending time introducing others to Cheyenne because I’m proud of where I grew up,” she said. “We live in a unique region and being able to share the places and experiences I love with others makes me immensely happy.”
A huge shout out to Melody for making her community and the world a better place!
Melody (pictured third from the right) is seen with her fellow "Do Gooders" at a local firefighter appreciation lunch.
The Legacy Award is in fond memory of Betty Thomas, an employee who lost a hard-fought battle to leukemia in 2013. She was our assistant contact center manager at the time and worked at the credit union for over decade. Betty’s spirit truly represented what it means to be a Blue employee. She was a role model for others and left a lasting legacy that embodies our mission and values. Other recipients include our executive administrative assistant, Margo LaHiff and CEO, Stephanie Teubner.
This award is only given when a recipient is found, rather than annually. This year we gave the Legacy Award to no one more deserving than Bruce Brady, our former Chief Human Resources Officer. Bruce was with Blue for 11 years and recently retired this past December, following his career in the United States Air Force. He’s an example of someone who would give the shirt of his back, even if you didn’t ask. Some of our best memories of Bruce will be forever commemorated in this very special honor. We asked him about what kind of legacy he wanted to leave at Blue.
“It goes back to the rule of leaving something better than how you found it,” Bruce explained. “Blue is viewed as the leader in doing good, and I hope the impact I’ve left shows that we’ve always done the right thing for our staff, members and communities.”
Even though we won’t see Bruce every day, we’ll still see him volunteering in the community and at many Blue events in the future. Congratulations, Bruce!
Bruce is pictured at a ceremony held in Cheyenne for the Vietnam Traveling Memorial Wall. He volunteered his time all week during the event to watch over the display.