Celebrating Successes, Sharing Rewards and Making Time for Fun

Be Different. Deliver Excellence.


Jun 18, 2019

Video Above: Photos of Collabrance Team Members celebrating at the Annual GreatAmerica Awards Banquet.

Annual Awards Banquet Exemplifies the GreatAmerica Company Culture

This past weekend, we gathered as a GreatAmerica family to celebrate together at our annual employee awards banquet, an event that exemplifies our GreatAmerica Principle #7: “We celebrate successes, share rewards, and make time for fun.” This black-tie event begins with an awards ceremony at the local Paramount Theatre, followed by dinner and dancing at the Cedar Rapids County Club.

Image Above: Tony Golobic, GreatAmerica CEO & Chairman, encourages team members to embrace the opportunities around us at the Annual Awards Banquet. Tony proclaimed that at GreatAmerica, yesterday was great, but tomorrow will be even better - because we will make it so!

Image Above: My wife, Nya, and I enjoy dinner among the GreatAmerica Family.

Celebrating Successes

Throughout the awards ceremony, our GreatAmerica Office of the President puts on a production that recognizes the year’s achievements as a company and employees. The awards show provides a mix of entertainment and surprises, including this year:

Image Above: Service Milestone Awards celebrate employees who have achieved tenure at GreatAmerica. Employee’s receive service milestones awards for 5, 10, 15, 20 and 25 years of service with GreatAmerica.

Image Above: Jake Wagner from Collabrance performed with other GreatAmerica Team Members as KISS in surprise Lip Sync Battle.

I look forward to this event as a fun, laughter-filled occasion, but also as an opportunity to pause and reflect on how fortunate I am to work alongside so many wonderful people who embody the GreatAmerica values of hard work, integrity, and excellence in fulfilling the company mission; “We help our Customers achieve greater success.”

Sharing Rewards

There are many accomplishments and employees to recognize, and it’s always exciting to see teammates on stage. We have a variety of awards that recognize team members at the event. Here are a couple Collabrance Team Members who won awards this year:

Image Above: Corey Kerns, Vice President & General Manager at Collabrance, wins “Outstanding Achiever Award” nominated and selected by peers for going above and beyond in his work and being a role-model GreatAmerican. Outstanding Achiever Awards are the pinnacle of the event for recognition. Every year the company is encouraged to nominate team members who they feel embrace our culture to the fullest and prove to be valuable to the company. The previous years’ winners review the nominations and select the next year’s winners. The award is purely peer-based.

Image Above: WOW of the Year Awards recognize team members who consistently deliver, “The GreatAmerica Experience.” Randall Pugh, Service Desk User Support Specialist at Collabrance, won “WOW of the Year Award” for continuously providing exemplified service experiences to customers.

What does this event, recognition and celebration means to employees? For me, during my first year at GreatAmerica, I was honored to be nominated by my peers and receive the “Rookie of the Year Award.” Having experienced that sense of honor, it brings me such joy to see my teammates recognized for their accomplishments at this event.

The generous trip that accompanied the GreatAmerica Rookie of the Year Award is something I will never forget, but what stuck with me most, was how honored I felt to receive the award because of what it represented to be recognized in an organization such as GreatAmerica; an organization that is filled with amazing people who are all-in on a culture of delivering excellence every day.

Make Time for Fun

Image Above: Collabrace Team Members dance the night away at the GreatAmerica reception.

When I think about the group of extraordinary teammates with which I shared Saturday night, I have no doubt we will continue to accomplish amazing strides together and that we're building relationships for a lifetime. There is a lot that goes into the GreatAmerica Awards Banquet every year. And every year, it is filled with laughter, fun, celebrations, making new friends, and creating memories. I’m proud to be part of the GreatAmerica Family and get to be a part of a strong company culture.

Even though our Awards Banquet is only once a year, we will still continue to “Celebrate Successes, Share Rewards & Make Time for Fun” EVERY. DAY.

Connect with us on social media to experience the GreatAmerica Principles and Company Culture throughout the year!


Tags: culture, events
Category: Personnel

About The Author

Andrew Wiese

Andrew Wiese, Operations & Finance Analyst, is responsible for evaluating the operational, risk, and financial implications of the Collabrance operating strategy​. Prior to joining Collabrance, Andrew started at GreatAmerica in 2016 as a Senior Financial Analyst in Corporate Finance. In 2017 he was nominated by his peers and won Rookie of the Year. Most recently, Andrew served as Director of GreatAmerica’s Financial Analysis team which leads all activities with respect to financial controls and evaluating the financial implications of the operating strategies within each the GreatAmerica business units. Prior to joining GreatAmerica, Andrew worked as a financial trader in the commodities space. Andrew received his B.A. in Political Science and his M.B.A. from the University of Iowa.