One of the main reasons American River Bank is different from other financial institutions is our extraordinary team of employees. We often receive feedback from clients about the exceptional, friendly and knowledgeable service our team members provide. We love our team too, which is the reason we celebrate all of our employees and recognize those who go above and beyond for our clients as well as our bank at our Annual Employee Recognition Event. Here are this year’s award winners!
You can join the recognition fun!
You can recognize an employee and share your appreciation for outstanding service by submitting a Shout Out to any branch employee. Shout Out notepads are available at each branch location on the Community Board.
Recognition Award Winners
Rookie of the Year:
- Steven Crain (Roseville) - Steven joined the bank in July of 2017, at the time our Roseville office had been without a Branch Manager since March, the CSC left in June, their full time CSR 4 decided to not come back after her maternity leave, the other CSR was just leaving on Maternity leave. (Unfortunately she didn’t came back either) Steven jumped right in, his first priority was to hire & build an entire new team for Roseville. He brought over a CSC who worked for him at a previous bank and then He and Jen hired their CSR’s together. The branch is now fully staffed with a committed, connected team. Roseville wasn’t tracking in many of their metrics when he joined, Steven didn’t let that dampen his enthusiasm, he began to connect with our clients, hitting 150% of his outbound visit goal and working hard to grow our bank. His COI relationships have led to growth/opportunities on both the deposit and loan sides of the house. He’s created great connections with our clients, brought stability to their Client Sat Scores, earning 98.55% by year end. Steven is an active participant on our weekly leader calls, sharing knowledge with his peers. The Roseville office had a rough start to the year, under Steven’s leadership they now have a great team dynamic and are on their way to a great 2018.
Retail Associate of the Year:
- Malissa Strange (Compliance): Malissa works relentlessly behind the scenes, especially with regards to business new accounts. The Compliance department reviewed documentation for over 1000 accounts opened in 2017, this includes all of the legal documentation for every business new account that was opened by the branches. She also played a role in moving the annual in-person BSA training to a Daily Connection format, which saved time and mileage expenses for almost EVERY department of the Bank. Malissa handles the bulk of all approval requests for combined online banking log-ins and debit cards for trust accounts. Malissa consistently and quietly works hard to make life easier for the people around her.”
Department Manager of the Year:
- Cathy Carter (BSS): Cathy’s role has her wearing many hats, she leads our BSS team and supports the Retail team in so many ways. This past year she led the Roseville office for almost 6 months until they got Steven and then she helped train Steven and the new team. She took on the task of coordinating the support coverage for our Healdsburg team during the Manager’s LOA, If she was not making the trip herself, she was scheduling staff to be there and making hotel reservations. She participated in the interview process for many of our open positions. She was a big part of the completion of the Back Scanning of all the new account files. She helped prepare all our branches for their audits. Also, along with managing staffing needs, Cathy supports the offices with reporting needs, her knowledge around Core and Connections is invaluable, anything they need she can figure out how to pull it out of the system. She is a huge support to Lisa, allowing her to spend more time with the team, clients and prospects, growing our Bank. Cathy is quick to ask for feedback and also give constructive feedback, both to her own team and to managers. Cathy is always looking for ways to improve our performance and the impact we make on our clients, she is never happy with just the status quo and challenges us to do it better.
Champion of Change:
- Alyssa McCoy (Compliance): Alyssa McCoy took on the role of VP Compliance Officer at the beginning of 2017 and has outperformed expectations. She takes every request for information, explanation, or input seriously and with the protection of the Bank in mind. She does so with great approachability, professionalism and charm. She makes time and makes people feel heard and relevant while quickly analyzing the situation and assessing for risk. She works well with teammates across departments and creates an environment of open communication. Oftentimes Compliance Departments are referred to as the “No Department”, Not so at ARB - Alyssa has created an environment of “How can we get it done?” She is observed to represent the Bank and the Compliance Department extremely well to the Board and others. She is a pleasure to work with and highly respected among her peers.”
Community Super Hero:
- Colette Flannery (CSS): Colette is always looking for ways to improve processes for departments and branches. In 2017 Colette noticed that our Bradshaw location was opening multiple savings accounts in different names but with the same mailing addresses. In her research she found out that we brought on a new client relationship tied to a California State Prison work program that would involve opening many accounts at one time for the relationship. Colette reached out to our core vendor and found a way to open accounts via the import of a new account spreadsheet template which can drastically improve the account opening process for the branch. This process can be utilized for any situation where a branch needs to open multiple accounts for the same client on the same day. She also took on the complete management of our Deposit Express Annual review process within the department. The process has many moving parts and once again Colette saw an opportunity to improve an area that required manual tracking. She worked with Lisa Bartoe to develop fields in Core Director that track the number of returned deposited items for current year and previous year eliminating the need to use a manual tracking log. Colette also developed a process to allow us to easily track specific cashier’s checks that were issued 1st quarter 2017 and where we need to be able to monitor them separately when they officially go “dormant” this year. These are just three examples that reflect Colette’s Champion of Change attitude. It is not unusual for her Manager and the CSS team to hear Colette say in the mornings “I was at home last night and was just thinking about ‘x,y,z’ and I have this idea..” She is always thinking of new ways to help and take care of our clients!”
All-Star Branch Leader:
- Babette Haggenjos (Accounting): Babette works as a Deacon of her church in her off time from the Bank, serving her community. She also volunteers in many capacities as a leader in that role, leading the charge in making satchels for the homeless, giving them dignity, serving the children in multiple functions including holiday events and retreats, etc. She served on the Foundation Grant Committee as an advocate and as a financial reviewer. She served on the Foundation’s craft fair committee and led her team in their piece of contributions. Her generosity and sincerity is apparent from the sight of her and is only reinforced by her words and actions. She is a model of what ARB looks to stand for and represents us well. In 2017 Babette contributed 89.25 hours to 4 organizations.
- Lynn Reid (Gold River): Lynn is an outstanding leader, her team is fully engaged and works hard together, achieving success in sales, service and operations. One of Lynn’s biggest strengths is the care she has for people. She provides true extraordinary experience to everyone. See the message below from Mr. Lacey, who is now our client because of the service Lynn provided his father, (his account is in the mid 6 figures):
By way of introduction, my name is Tom Lacey. My Dad Robert Lacey has been a multi-decade customer of American River Bank. My Dad will soon be 96 and for the last few months I've been helping him with a number of things, including his finances/banking.
I have been completely blown away with the tremendous customer service I've received on behalf of my Dad by Lynn and her team.
I've been a high net worth, Wells Fargo customer for more than 20 years and I thought the service I received has been great... it is not as good as Lynn and her team. Her personal care of my Dad -- showing him how to use his new ATM card, to suggesting financial safeguards as his memory is fading, compassion, account safeguarding, etc.... the list goes on.
A high five from me to Lynn and her team.”
- Alisa Zimmerman (Human Resources): Alisa joined our team as the HR Coordinator having NO prior HR experience. She quickly learned a tremendous amount about HR, connected with our team and quickly built rapport using what she had learned and demonstrating that she will work tirelessly for employees to resolve issues that arise. Alisa is the first point person ensuring that new hires have what they need day one – she enters their information into the TriNet system, prepares and sends their welcome package and follows with vendors and support departments to get important password information and prepares the new hire memo with that information. Alisa assisted in the vetting of the Symphony Online Training platform and led us through the conversion – Her efforts with Symphony created efficiencies by giving each of us back several hours as we can now test out and not have to go through each module. In the vane of efficiency, Alisa also revised our Learning Sessions into webinar format and created the content/deck for the 7 Habits of Highly Effective People webinar. There was one webinar session of the 7 Habits series left to present after the leadership change and without skipping a beat Alisa volunteered to lead it. She did an amazing job receiving accolades from several of the team members that attended. All in all Alisa has proven herself to be a contributor to the ARB Team and is deserving of the Support All Star Award.
The Oz Award:
- Wendy Ashton (Jackson): “Wendy is the Financial Services Officer at the Jackson office. In late 2016 her role expanded to include the Amador region Merchant portfolio. In this new role, Wendy got to learn all about the wonderful, complicated world of Merchant services while she was helping the client with EMV conversion as well as their regular needs. She gets lots of calls from Amador Merchants that need something ASAP and Wendy always makes it a priority to assist. Whether it’s late on a weekday or on a weekend she is prepared to assist anyone who needs help. There are several instances where she will go to visit a client on the weekend to swap out a terminal, deliver a loaner or just pop in because they were having some sort of issue in the week that she wanted to follow up on. The Amador Clients love Wendy and know that they can always count on her to take care of their needs!”
2017 Road Warriors:
- Nate Andreassen (Santa Rosa): This past year Nate truly shined as a leader for our bank and the Sonoma region. See it, Own it,
Solve it, and Do it is how Nate looks at everything and it's apparent in his daily actions. When Healdsburg's manager went out on maternity leave in August Nate stepped up to run both offices. Due to unrelated situations over the next two months the CSC and both CSRs left our bank. Nate took on the responsibility for the day-to-day at Healdsburg while interviewing, hiring & training new teammates, ensuring our clients weren’t negatively impacted, leading both branches to strong finishes for the year. Not once during the entire six months did Nate ever complain, I can't stress this enough, he never once expressed frustration with all that was on his shoulders. Not even after the October fires that devastated Sonoma. That first morning getting the call from Nate, there was never a doubt that team and our clients were in good hands. What a scary week that was for everyone. There were multiple mandatory evacuation’s that kept shifting and impacting teammates. Folks would come to work and have to leave, their stress levels were high. At times the fires were less than a mile from the branch and Nate’s home. Nate kept us in the loop, kept track of the team and helped our clients. The Santa Rosa office was only closed for one full day. Nate was either there or at Healdsburg during that week. When a teammate in Sacramento was talking to Nate and heard that Nate's car was packed up and his family was ready to leave at a moment’s notice. He asked Nate “why are you at work”, Nate's reply "people need help". That's who Nate is. During that week Nate and the team reached out to clients to make sure everyone was OK, he offered our office space to clients that had been impacted and sat with many folks listening to how they had been impacted by the fires. Nate shared that it was hard at times but that people need to talk about it. Nate’s dedication to his team, our clients and the bank is apparent in his daily actions and we are lucky to have him on our team.
In 2017 we experienced a special circumstance in our Healdsburg Office. The manager went out on Maternity Leave and during that time the CSC, CSR and BSS that were housed in that office all left the bank for various reasons. We have an incredible crew of “Road Warriors” who stepped in to take care of our Clients. Our Sacramento Road Warrior contingent agreed to spend the entire week away from their families in a hotel in order to keep the doors open at Healdsburg. Our Sonoma Road Warriors spent many hours travelling back and forth between the 2 offices – THANK YOU ALL!!
2017 Shout Out of Attendance Excellence:
2017 Shout Out of Safety Excellence:
Congratulations to ALL!
- Siamak Kermanj – 1 Year
- Alicia Jessie – 1 Year
- Tracey Weems – 1 year
- Eric Tow – 6 Years
- Steve Moyer – 8 Years