Business Briefs for the week of Sept. 1

Eagan IT company hires cloud operations chief

Eric Walter has been hired as vice president, cloud operations at Eagan-based ConvergeOne, an IT services provider.

In this newly created position, Walter is responsible for the company’s cloud operations and delivery and will focus on driving efficiencies through automation, process and technology. He will report directly to ConvergeOne chairman and CEO, John A. McKenna Jr.

Walter previously served as vice president of cloud services at Genesys/Interactive Intelligence. Prior to that, he spent over 10 years in leadership positions at IBM focused on data center management and disaster recovery planning.

New manager at Firefly

Sandy Fritz-Gerke has joined Burnsville-based Firefly Credit Union as credit administration manager.

She has over 20 years of financial experience in leadership, commercial lending and investing positions.

In her new role, Fritz-Gerke will manage policy and procedure compliance, underwriting, financial analysis and reporting.

“I look forward to contributing my strengths in a collaborative, team environment,” said Fritz-Gerke. “Having served as a longtime credit union employee, I feel my experience will bring a lot to the Firefly team and I am excited to see where this journey will take me.”

Outside of her position, Fritz-Gerke served on a scholarship fund for several years as vice chair and board chair, where she was able to help youth attend post-secondary education.

Credit union kids program soars

This summer, Burnsville-based Firefly Credit Union launched its Catch A Firefly campaign, giving families the opportunity to enjoy a free summer activity, while learning ways to save money.

The purpose of the campaign was to give kids the resources they need to collect coins by day and fireflies by night. Parents and children were welcomed into any Firefly branch location to pick up their Catch A Firefly Kit – a firefly catching net and a mason jar packed with tips on how to save money and catch fireflies.

Firefly employee and financial education specialist Geoff Bullock was the face of the campaign as he appeared on several media channels including WCCO Morning News, WCCO Radio, KARE 11 Morning News and CCX-Channel 12 Feature Story.

“It is crucial to teach children the importance of saving money and to instill these financial habits early on,” said Bullock. “This campaign allowed us to do just that in a fun and engaging way for both kids and their parents.”

Nearly 4,000 children received a Catch A Firefly Kit, making them mindful of the following steps for successful saving:

1. Set a goal of how much you want to save.

2. Decide what you’ll do with your savings.

3. Talk with your parents for ideas of how to earn money.

4. Save, save, save.

5. Earn dividends by moving your money into a savings account when your jar is full.

Ecumen Centennial House a top workplace

Ecumen Centennial House of Apple Valley, along with other Ecumen communities, has been named one of Minnesota’s Best Places to Work by the Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal for the 10th time.

The award is based on rankings from an independently conducted employee survey in a variety of categories such as work environment, communication, leadership, teamwork, innovation, and employee development. Ecumen was honored in the large-company category.

Ecumen is featured in an Aug. 18 Business Journal special section and was honored at an Aug. 17 awards ceremony at the Renaissance Minneapolis Hotel, The Depot.

Ecumen Centennial House of Apple Valley employs 66 people locally, and Ecumen employs nearly 4,000 people, primarily in Minnesota.