Like many people, throughout my life I have always enjoyed watching awards shows. It doesn’t matter if it’s the Academy Awards, the Emmys, the Tony Awards or the Country Music Association Awards ‒ mix some glitter and glamor with healthy competition, and I’ll take the time to watch. The difference, though, between watching awards shows as a teenager and watching them today is that I used to know who the nominees were. Now, more often than not, I am unfamiliar with the actors, the movies, the entertainers and the songs.
The banking business has its share of awards programs, too. Recently in this blog I wrote about Old National Bank, Evansville, and Ben Joergens winning top national awards at the American Bankers Association annual convention for their impressive consumer education outreach. A couple of years ago, The New Washington State Bank, Charlestown, won a top national award from the Independent Community Bankers of America for the bank’s heroic response to deadly tornadoes in southern Indiana. American Banker newspaper in recent years named Mike Kubacki, former president and CEO Lake City Bank, Warsaw, as Community Banker of the Year. These accolades are proud moments for the recipients and reflect well on the full Indiana banking community.
Staff members of the Indiana Bankers Association are no strangers to winning awards. Each year since 2002, the Indiana Society of Association Executives has hosted an annual “STAR Awards” ceremony. Each year since 2003, the IBA has been honored with at least one STAR Award. The many Indiana trade associations represented compete for awards of excellence in categories such as Outstanding Convention or Outstanding Website. Other STAR Awards recognize individuals, such as Association Professional of the Year or Association Executive of the Year.
Last week the 2015 Awards ceremony took place. Once again, IBA was well recognized. IBA won in the category of Outstanding Individual Program/Event for creating a successful Future Leadership Division “Day at the Statehouse” program. Kudos to Dax Denton, Christina Bennett and Josh Myers for the planning and execution of what will now be an annual event. IBA also won in the category of Outstanding Non-Dues Revenue Program, in recognition of the IBA Marketing Packages for associate members. The Marketing Package concept was created by Paul Freeman several years back, and is now ably managed by Rod Lasley and Susan Clark.
A particularly proud moment, however, was the selection of Amber Van Til, IBA executive vice president, as 2015 Association Professional of the Year. This individual award is presented annually to a non-CEO in the association business. What makes Amber’s win so impressive is that she is the sixth IBA officer to be so recognized in the award’s 14-year history. I am not aware of any other organization that has won the Association Professional of the Year award more than once, yet six of our professional staff have been honored: Paul Freeman, Laurie Rees, Christina Bennett, Laura Wilson, Dax Denton, and now Amber Van Til. Bankers in Indiana are well served by the dedicated professionals of the IBA.
I am extremely proud of the IBA staff and the accomplishments they achieve year after year on behalf of our member banks and bankers. Thanks to the inspiration of our membership, IBA staff has worked hard and has been blessed with awards for accomplishments achieved throughout the year.
– S. Joe DeHaven