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Brewers' "Hank" visits West Bend

Hank hits a home run at West Bend

Hundreds of West Bend associates lined up Monday afternoon to meet and have their pictures taken with Hank the dog, the Milwaukee Brewers’ unofficial mascot. He didn’t disappoint.

Hank, a Bichon mix, was escorted by Brewers executives and joined associates in the Terrace for the hour-long event. After greeting the audience with a few barks, Hank was seated on a table where he was photographed with associates. He was the perfect gentleman ... no growls, no accidents.

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West Bend named Top Workplace in Southeast Wisconsin

West Bend Mutual Insurance Company is the Number One Best Place to Work in Southeast Wisconsin!

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West Bend ranked first on the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel’s list of 2014 Top Workplaces in the large company category, moving up from second place in 2013! This honor was announced Friday, June 6 when the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel hosted the fifth annual Top Workplaces awards breakfast. A record number of employers in southeastern Wisconsin participated this year, so 150 Top Workplaces were actually recognized.

“At West Bend, we always strive to be a winning organization and we’ve made tremendous strides in accomplishing this,” said Kevin Steiner, president and CEO. “We went from the third-best company in 2012 to the second-best in 2013. Our number-one ranking this year is evidence of the great work our 1,100 associates are doing to be that winning organization. I’m very proud of every one of our associates and their commitment to excellence.” The rankings are based solely on an associate survey that was completed last December. We’re honored to have been selected for the award, especially since our associates were the judges!

CarolServerSMAssociates celebrated West Bend's number one spot with yummy treats from Kelley's Country Creamery of Fond du Lac.

AmyCarolSMAssociates were also given the special privilege to dress casually the entire month of June! Jeans, flip-flops, t-shirts, and tennis shoes were all given the "green light." Below, Kevin Steiner, Nel Smith, Tiffany Hildebrandt, and Tracey Berg show their summer spirit with brightly colored flip-flops! 

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4th Annual DogJog

4th Annual DogJog Fundraiser

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Milwaukee Brewers Baseball Club’s Famous Racing Sausages™ made an appearance at the 4th DogJog and Picnic (formerly known as Brat Trot and Brat Fry) on Monday, June 16! West Bend officers were paired with a Racing Sausage to compete in some fun events, including a three-legged race! Associates also enjoyed a tailgate lunch of hot dogs and root beer floats. All proceeds from this fundraiser benefit Christmas Families from Chix for a Cause.

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2014 WBMIC scholarships awarded to local students

2014 WBMIC scholarships awarded to local students

We’re happy to announce the 2014 West Bend Mutual Insurance Company
scholarship winners!

• Katherine Von Bank – winner of the WBMI Associates’ Children Scholarship
• Zach Galante – winner of the WBMI Columns Scholarship
• Samuel Blawat – winner of the WBMI KEYS Scholarship
• Jessa Ehlinger – winner of the WBMI Honours Scholarship

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Katherine Von Bank is the daughter of Terry and Kevin Von Bank. Terry is an IT manager at West Bend. Katherine attends Menomonee Falls High School where she is a member of the National Honor Society, Health Care Academy, Student Council, and Living the Life of an Athlete. Katherine played four years of high school volleyball and more than four years for the Milwaukee Sting Volleyball Club. She was named to the Second Team All Conference two years in a row. She was also co-captain of the team when she and her teammates won the State Championship in 2013. Katherine enjoys volunteering for the Special Olympics, working with physically-disabled young children at volleyball camps. Katherine will attend the University of Madison where she plans to pursue a degree in biomedical sciences.

Zach Galante attends West Bend East High School. He’s the son of Kurt and Michelle Galante. Zach is an Eagle Scout, a Vigil Honor Member, and has been on the French Exchange through the high schools. He’s been involved in Key Club, performed in six musicals, and has logged more than 400 hours of volunteer work. Zach will attend the University of St. Thomas where he’ll study business administration and Catholic studies with a minor in French.

Samuel Blawat, the son of Michael and Ruth Blawat, attends Kewaskum High School. He plans to go to Wisconsin Lutheran College and major in biology and psychology.

Slinger High School senior, Jessa Ehlinger, was selected for Badger Girls State and was the Rotary Academic Student of the Month in November. She’s won many first- and second-place trophies for forensics and has won a myriad of “starred first” awards (the highest honor) at solo and ensemble for singing and playing the cello. Jessa is a tutor for dyslexic and ADHD children, as well as a member of the Human Rights and Diversity Clubs. She plans to attend Wisconsin Lutheran College and major in biology with a minor in Spanish. She would like to become a veterinarian.

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2014 Silver Lining 5K for Kids

2014 Silver Lining 5K for Kids!

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This year’s annual fundraising to support West Bend’s Boys and Girls Club on Sunday, June 1 attracted 78 West Bend associates and 40 family members. Associate Jeff’s Bilitz’s son Eric took first place overall with a time of 16:33 and a pace of 5:20/mile.

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Earth Week computer collection

Earth Week computer collection a success!

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When we asked for old and tired computers, associates responded! Here’s what West Bend’s IT staff collected during April’s Earth Week computer drive ...


• 50 tower PCs

• 20 laptops

• 40 CRTs/monitors

• 15 printers/scanners

Plus we received other items like speakers, cables, and modems. Everything donated was taken to Habitat for Humanity where it will be recycled.

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2014 Corporate Challenge

2014 Corporate Challenge

2014 Corporate Challenge

May’s 2014 Corporate Challenge began with the CEO boat race and trivia contest. Chris Zwygart, vice president and chief risk officer, filled in for Kevin Steiner. Competition was fierce throughout the week-long event and it all came down to the last night here at West Bend.
Events included a yoga tree pose and plank challenge, as well as the brand new Cook Off! A huge thank you to Chef Michael for doing a remarkable job organizing and overseeing the event. Nine teams took over the kitchen here at West Bend with one hour to make a plate of food. Three judges from local restaurants then rated the plates in three categories. West Bend took fourth place in that event.
Here are the final standings for the 2014 Corporate Challenge. West Bend’s team did a great job and came in a respectable third place over all. Froedtert & The Medical College of Wisconsin Community Physicians took first place this year.
Thank you to everyone who helped, took time to participate, and had FUN! We’ll be back next year!!!

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West Bend wins fitness award for fourth year!

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For a fourth year, we are excited to announce that we have won a Start! Fit Friendly Company Award from the American Heart Association. Heart disease is the number one killer in the U.S. and physical inactivity doubles that risk. This award recognizes employers who go above and beyond when it comes to the health of their employees. They look for workplaces that provide walking routes, promote walking programs, tracking tools, gym memberships or onsite fitness centers.

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2014 Wellness Month - Steiner Stomp

Annual Steiner Stomp takes place
on West Bend's Prairie Trails

A large group of associates joined Kevin Steiner in the annual “Steiner Stomp” Wednesday, May 14. Participants donned tennis shoes, with the option to wear jeans, and walked the prairie trails with Kevin to officially kick of West Bend's May Wellness Month. Walkers were also given “Get Moving” tickets to enter a drawing for lots of wellness-realted prizes!

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2014 Take Your Child To Work

West Bend’s Take Your Child to Work Day

Children between the ages of 8 and 14 participated in West Bend's Take Your Child to Work Day on Thursday, April 24. The children learned about different departments at West Bend and enjoyed being involved in the variety of activities the presenters planned. Participating departments were Claims Underwriting, SIU, Print Shop, Work Comp, Human Resources, and Events Services. The children were also able to visit their parent’s workstations to learn about their jobs and the departments they work in.

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