Angled view of the front of the Kish Innovation Center building with Kish sign
STATE COLLEGE, PA – Kish Bank and its affiliates held the first ever remotely conducted Employee Recognition Month, celebrating its employees and expressing appreciation for their dedication and outstanding performance during the past year. Being unable to hold its 36th annual Employee Recognition Dinner amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, Kish instead took the opportunity to innovate with a fully remote, month-long celebration of its employees.
“It’s astounding how quickly [COVID-19] forced us to adapt everything we do, but it doesn’t change the importance of our celebration and the enthusiasm we have for celebrating our team’s accomplishments,” said Greg Hayes, President and Chief Operating Officer.
The month’s theme was “Kish Heroes,” celebrating the heroism Kish team members continuously demonstrate while serving their clients and communities. Special tributes were paid to the many “Kish superheroes” who have gone above and beyond in their work during the COVID-19 pandemic, whether by providing exceptional service to their clients and communities in a time of great need, or by supporting the organization and their fellow team members during unprecedented times.
“The team’s performance since the pandemic struck has been truly extraordinary—nothing short of heroic,” said Bill Hayes, Chairman and CEO. He continued, “From PPP loans to more than 840 businesses, to residential mortgage originations that doubled prior year volumes, to business and consumer loan payment deferrals, to the conversion to a new core operating system, all accomplished by teams working remotely or distanced from each other—it is truly a testament to the capacity of the team to perform under duress. To be able to pivot quickly from normal business routines to respond in the timeframe that we did is really a validation of all that Kish stands for. It will go down in our annals as a shining moment during a difficult period.”
Each week of the month-long event featured a special video message from Bill and Greg Hayes recognizing various employees and teams throughout the organization. The festivities included a welcome for 38 new employees, recognition of employees’ educational and industry leadership achievements, and presentations of special achievement awards. Multiple customer and community video testimonials also served to highlight the meaningful impact of the team’s work. Length of service awards were presented to 27 employees celebrating milestones ranging from 5 to 40 years. Of note were 20-year service awards presented to Leslie Sauer, AVP, Accounting Manager, and Cheryl Shope, VP, Residential Lender; a 30-year service award presented to Joanna Minium, Bank Operations Specialist; and 40-year service awards presented to Karen Gilbert, Commercial Relationship Assistant, and Cam Long, Personal Banker. Larry Burger, VP, Commercial Relationship Manager, was also honored with a special lifetime achievement award. All recipients were presented with personalized gifts by Bill and Greg Hayes.
Kish’s Community Impact Award, a prestigious award presented annually to a Kish employee for their outstanding volunteer efforts, was presented to Paula Kauffman, AVP, Commercial Loan Operations and Documentation Manager. Kauffman’s many community service efforts have included volunteering with Big Brothers Big Sisters, Shelter Service of Mifflin and Juniata County, Backyard Ministries, Toys for Tots, and the Lumina Center in Lewistown. For her award, Kauffman received funds to be directed to a charity of her choice.
The highlight of the month was the presentation of the “2020 Employee of the Year Award,” which was awarded to Ashley Henry, VP, Systems and Projects Manager, in recognition of her exceptional level of service to the Kish organization and its customers. Henry, who has been with Kish since 2005, received a presentation plaque, personal days, and a Kish Travel voucher for a future trip to a destination of her choice.
Hayes congratulated all 235 Kish employees on a year of record performance and growth, attributing it to their shared determination to make the lives of those around them, their clients and their communities, better.
About Kish Bank
Kish Bank is a $1.0 billion regional community bank that operates seventeen offices and financial centers in Centre, Mifflin, Huntingdon, and Juniata counties. Affiliates of Kish Bank include: Kish Insurance, Kish Financial Solutions, Kish Benefits Consulting, and Kish Travel. For additional information, please visit www.kishbank.com. Kish Bank is a subsidiary of Kish Bancorp, Inc., trading under the OTC stock ticker symbol of KISB.