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Ways to Honor Memorial Day5/20/2024

Memorial Day blog header

The importance of Memorial Day can get lost in all the shopping and grilling, so take some time to acknowledge the service members who gave their lives to protect this country. Here are 15 ways to honor Memorial Day this year. 

1. Fly the American flag

Memorial Day is the perfect time to hang out the red, white and blue. Let that star-spangled banner fly! 

2. Brush up on your knowledge of American history

Learn about the major events that shaped our country and read up on why we celebrate Memorial Day each year.

3. Take a moment of silence

However you spend your Memorial Day, you can take a moment of silence at 3 p.m. for The National Moment of Remembrance.

4. Watch a patriotic movie

Watching a patriotic movie, like Black Hawk Down or The Hurt Locker, can help you feel their stories and appreciate what they do for our country.

5. Donate flowers for soldiers’ graves

Make a donation to Memorial Day Flowers, a foundation that places flowers on the graves of soldiers. 

6. Volunteer

Do something for someone else in the spirit of Memorial Day. You can help an elderly neighbor, pay it forward for someone at the coffee shop, volunteer at a soup kitchen, or find another way to spread kindness.

7. Shop at a veteran-owned business

If you plan to do any shopping or eating out this Memorial Day, you may want to make a stop into a business that is owned and/or operated by a veteran or military family. You can find a list of some veteran-owned businesses here.

8. Learn how to play a patriotic song

Dig out the guitar and dust off the piano, and then learn how to play a patriotic song in honor of Memorial Day. You can learn God Bless the U.S.A. or American Soldier. 

9. Take a virtual tour of the White House

In the digital age, you can take a tour of the White House from your living room. You’ll find a full virtual tour of the White House at Google Arts & Culture. There, you’ll learn all about the building’s architecture and about the historic events that took place in each room.

10. Create patriotic chalk art

Get out the sidewalk chalk and create some beautiful patriotic-inspired art on your driveway or the sidewalk in front of your home.

11. Write letters to soldiers and their families

Show your kids that Memorial Day is more than just a day off from school by having them write letters to active-duty soldiers and veterans.

12. Listen to veterans’ stories

Get a feel for the veterans’ stories by listening to a memoir like Band of Brothers or The Things They Cannot Say.

13. Donate to a military cause

Look up some trusted military charities and nonprofits, and then choose one that most speaks to you.

This year, KCCU donated to the Red White Blue Foundation of Calhoun County through local Biggby franchise owner, Charles Solano. On May 3rd, Mr. Solano attempted to break the Guinness World Record for The Most Chin Ups In 12 Hours, and he did it! This record was set in 2016 at 4,649. He ended up setting the new record at 5,107! In the process he also beat the 8-hour record with 3,755 chin ups, which was also set in 2016 with 3,751. All funds raised for this record-breaking attempt were donated to this foundation.

14. Put together care packages for soldiers

Operation Gratitude hosts several events over Memorial Day weekend. You can donate toys to kids who are living in combat zones, host a neighborhood fundraising event or collect toiletries for the troops.

15. Attend a Memorial Day parade

Find a local Memorial Day parade and join the festivities in the spirit of the day.

Use these ideas to celebrate Memorial Day this year. How are you going to celebrate Memorial Day this year? Tell us about it in a short video.


Kellogg Community Credit Union Announces 2024 Scholarship Recipients5/15/2024

Memorial Day blog header

Kellogg Community Credit Union (KCCU) is proud to help local students achieve their educational goals and pursue their dreams by awarding ten outstanding student members with the 2024 KCCU Scholarship! The scholarship provides $1,000 towards tuition for students attending an accredited Michigan college, university, or trade school.

KCCU would like to congratulate these ten deserving recipients, who each show a strong commitment to furthering their education and improving their communities:

Alexis Downs is a class of 2024 Pennfield High School graduate and Salutatorian. She also attended the Battle Creek Area Math & Science Center and was dual enrolled at Kellogg Community College. During high school she was involved in varsity & travel softball, National Honor Society, and volunteered at her school’s concession stand. Alexis plans to attend Albion College, being a part of Prentiss M. Brown Honors Program, and majoring in geological sciences.

Anshul Mohanty is a class of 2024 Portage Northern High School graduate. He also attended the Kalamazoo Area Math & Science Center and was on their computer science team. During high school he was the captain of his school’s tennis team and was a student ambassador. He also participated in marching band, FIRST Robotics, and National Honor Society. Outside of school he was a general class-licensed radio operator and tutored & mentored other students. He participated in hundreds of hours of community service, including giving his time to Talons Out & Breadlift. Anshul plans to attend the University of Michigan to pursue a degree in computer science to hopefully go into a career with AI & machine learning.

Brock Messenger is a class of 2024 Harper Creek High School graduate. During high school he was on his school’s tennis and golf teams. He also had an internship at Duncan Aviation. Brock plans to attend Lansing Community College in a trade program to jumpstart his career plan of becoming an electrical lineman.

Cade Isenhoff is a class of 2024 South Christian High School graduate. During high school he was involved in football, track, and student council. Outside of school he was a junior cadet counselor at his church, went on mission trips, and worked at a local nursing home. Cade plans to attend either Calvin University or Grand Valley State to major in secondary education on his way to becoming a teacher.

Garrett Barton is a class of 2024 Climax-Scotts High School graduate. He was also dual enrolled at Kalamazoo Valley Community College. During high school he was involved with the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF), excelled in a mechatronics course at KRESA, and earned a SACA industry 4.0 Associate-Basic Operations certification. Garrett plans to continue attending Kalamazoo Valley Community College before transferring to Western Michigan University for mechanical engineering.

Halla Reed is a class of 2024 Harper Creek High School graduate. During high school she played softball and volleyball. She was also in student council, participated in the National Honor Society, and was the high school girls’ swim & dive manager. Halla plans to attend Michigan Technological University to study biomedical or mechanical engineering with a focus in aerospace.

Kailyn Peak is a class of 2020 Lakeview High School graduate. While in school, she volunteered and had an internship at a homeless shelter, worked at a daycare, and volunteered locally to help families in need. Kailyn plans to attend Spring Arbor University, as she recently received her associate degree from Kellogg Community College.

Keegan McIntyre is a class of 2024 Portage Northern High School graduate. During high school he played football, baseball, and basketball. Outside of school he mentored & coached at youth clinics for baseball & football, participated in the Junior Achievement Titans challenge, and participated in Breadlift. Keegan plans to attend Hope College, Calvin University, or Concordia University. He is planning to play collegiate football while studying accounting or finance.

Mackenzie Swift was homeschooled and a class of 2022 graduate. During school she was involved in her church’s Victory Life & Impact youth groups and worked multiple jobs. Mackenzie plans to attend Kellogg Community College to pursue a career as a physical therapy assistant.

Madeline Kue is a class of 2024 Marshall High School graduate. During high school she was the team captain for women’s varsity swim & dive, participated in symphonic orchestra, and was the men’s swim team manager. In school she was also student council class president and National Honor Society vice president. Outside of school she participated in ballet and competition dance for over 10 years, was employed at a local dance company, and donated much of her free time to multiple local volunteer causes. Madeline plans to attend Hope College to major in biology on the pre-med track.

"Education plays a pivotal role building robust communities and grooming the leaders of tomorrow," said Tracy Miller, CEO of Kellogg Community Credit Union. "We commend these remarkable students not only for their scholastic achievements but also for their steadfast dedication to enriching their local communities. It brings us great joy to support their educational journey and we extend our best wishes for their future endeavors."

The Kellogg Community Credit Union Scholarship Program was established to assist KCCU members who are planning to attend or currently attend an accredited Michigan college or university or are working towards a certification or degree program in the trades at state supported community colleges. 2024 marks the thirty-sixth year of KCCU’s scholarship program, and since its inception they have awarded roughly $195,000 to local students. KCCU’s Board of Directors, Management, and Staff congratulate the 2024 scholarship winners, and thank the many other exceptional students who applied.


Kellogg Community Credit Union, headquartered in Battle Creek, Michigan is a full-service financial institution serving people who live, work, worship, or attend school in the state of Michigan. With $895 million in assets, KCCU proudly serves over 52,000 members in Michigan, with branches in Battle Creek, Marshall, Kalamazoo, Portage, Richland, Grand Rapids, and Three Rivers. A community leader since 1941, KCCU consistently outperforms other financial institutions with outstanding service satisfaction ratings and a long history of growth. For more information, please visit www.kccu4u.org. Connect with Kellogg Community Credit Union on Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn.


KCCU Wins Presigious Newsweek "America's Best Credit Unions" Award2/27/2024

KCCU is thrilled to announce they have been honored as one of America's Best Credit Unions for 2024 by Newsweek, placing them in the top 250 credit unions in the nation!

Best Credit Unions 2024

Newsweek, in partnership with the market research firm Plant-A Insights Group assessed over 9,440 financial institutions, obtained feedback from over 35,000 members, and evaluated 149 million online reviews. In their results, they spotlighted the top 250 credit unions in the United States on Newsweek.com, and KCCU is honored to be named to this list! Credit Unions were highlighted in their own category as being recognized that they are a financial cooperative owned by their members.

Plant-A Insights Group based their assessment on factors of the financial institutions profitability, lending activity, overall financial health and stability, operational performance, and reputation.

“This award is a true testament of how committed we are to providing our members with the best value and service possible to help them reach their financial dreams,” stated Tracy Miller, KCCU’s CEO. “I cannot express enough how grateful we are for the dedication of our team, and the loyalty of our members to the credit union.”

“Regional banks and credit unions play a pivotal role in meeting the needs of communities across the nation.  Newsweek and market-data research firm Plant-A Insights are proud to announce, “America’s Best Regional Banks and Credit Unions 2024,” highlighting local lenders that are committed to the needs of their communities.” – Nancy Cooper – Global Editor in Chief – Newsweek

You can find more detailed information on Newsweek’s website, www.newsweek.com/rankings/americas-best-regional-banks-credit-unions-2024.


KCCU Hosts Toy Drives to Help Bring Joy to Children This Holiday Season11/13/2023

KCCU Toy Drive 2023

Donations accepted at all branches now through December 15th

KCCU Toy Drive 2023

Kellogg Community Credit Union (KCCU) is excited to begin their annual toy drive for children who may not otherwise receive a gift during the holidays. This will mark the twenty-first consecutive year that KCCU will collect toys and gifts for children in need. 

KCCU is partnering with the Salvation Army to have Angel Trees at all their Battle Creek, Kalamazoo, and Grand Rapids locations. The Three River’s branch will support the St. Joseph County United Way toy drive for local foster children, and the Marshall Branch is partnering with There’s Enough. These charitable organizations are looking for new toys, games, or gift cards for children ages infant to 17 years old. Donations can be dropped off at a KCCU branch now through December 15th and the gifts should be unwrapped. By making a toy or gift card donation to one of these programs, you can directly impact a child in West Michigan while sharing the joy of the holidays! 

“At KCCU we believe the real magic of the holiday season lies in helping others. We are thrilled to host our annual toy drive to provide gifts to the children and teens in our community again this year.” says Tracy Miller, CEO of KCCU. “We welcome both KCCU Members and the community to come together to make a difference in a child’s life this holiday season by donating a toy or gift card. Together we can make a child’s holiday brighter.”


KCCU Hosts Winter Coat Drive To Help Support Communities9/29/2023

KCCU Winter Coat Drive 2023

Donations accepted at all branches October 1st-31st

KCCU 2023 Coat Drive

Kellogg Community Credit Union (KCCU) is ready to kick-off its annual coat drive to help the members of the communities in which they serve stay warm this winter. The coat drive will run from October 1st – 31st, and items can be dropped off in the lobby at any KCCU branch location. Financial hardship can make it difficult for some families and individuals to ensure that they’ll be dressed properly this winter, making this annual coat drive arrive at the perfect time. KCCU knows their team, members, and the community will come together and show support for this worthy cause, as they have done for many years past.

KCCU is adamant about helping to provide cold weather gear to those who may need assistance, so they are collecting new and gently used coats, snow pants, hats, mittens, and scarves, that are clean and in good condition, in all sizes from adults to infants and everything in-between. Then the items that are collected will be distributed to local families in need by our community partners.

“KCCU is passionate about being able to support the communities that we serve in any way that we can. With the cold months quickly approaching we want to ensure that members of our community have the cold weather gear they need to stay warm,” stated KCCU’s CEO, Tracy Miller. “This is just one of the ways we can give back to the community and live out our people helping people philosophy. And working together, we know we can make a positive impact on the lives of the families and individuals who may need some assistance this year. It’s an honor to partner with our wonderful charitable organizations to support our local initiatives. A heartfelt thank you goes out to everyone who donates to our Coat Drive!”

KCCU’s vision statement includes “providing opportunity and lifelong value to our members and our community.” KCCU takes this statement seriously, and for the past nineteen years they’ve hosted a Coat Drive in partnership with community-based organizations, as part of their commitment to their vision.


KCCU Announces 2023 Teacher Grant Recipients9/1/2023

2023 teacher grant recipients

August 25, 2023

Teacher grant recipient  teacher grant recipient

Left: Gillian Wilk from KCCU presents check to Patti Kuenzel. Right: Gillian Wilk from KCCU presents check to Erin Andrews

Kellogg Community Credit Union (KCCU) is thrilled to announce that for the third year in a row, they offered their Teacher Grant Program and awarded teachers throughout West Michigan with grants for their classrooms.

KCCU understands that great educators are always seeking innovative ways to foster impactful learning experiences, and often use their own funds to purchase additional classroom supplies. They wanted to offer support to these deserving educators, and they did by providing funds to fifteen teachers, each of them receiving $400 to purchase classroom supplies. That is a total of $6,000 going back into local classrooms!

“At KCCU, we are committed to helping teachers who are educating our students and future leaders,” said Tracy Miller, KCCU’s CEO. “We know that teachers work hard and put in a lot of time, and often their own money, to help their students learn and thrive. Our hope is with these grants, educators can get the tools and resources needed for their students to succeed in the classroom.”

“I love teaching because I love to share in the joy with other people, especially my students,” said Patti Kuenzel, third grade teacher at St. Joseph Elementary and recipient of a KCCU Teacher Grant. “I am going to use my grant money to purchase things like chair cushions, bouncy bands for those kids who have to keep moving their feet all day, and water bottle holders for their desks; all kinds of things to bring joy to the classroom."

“One of the things I love most about being an educator is being able to offer a safe and inclusive space for all students to be able to grow and learn,” said Erin Andrews, teacher at North Penn Elementary and recipient of a KCCU Teacher Grant. “I am going to use the grant money to purchase STEM (Science Technology Engineering Mathematics) supplies to help my students with problem solving and critical thinking skills.”

Here is a complete list of the 2023 teacher grant recipients

  • Amber - Parchment Highschool
  • Erin - Lincoln International Studies
  • Haylee - Gull Lake Community Schools
  • Heather - Delton Kellogg Elementary
  • Jessica - Comstock STEM Academy
  • Makayla - Norton Elementary
  • Laura - Union City Elementary 
  • Chelsea - Ann J. Kellogg
  • Erin - North Penn Elementary
  • Karen- Harper Creek Middle School
  • Meghan - Marshall Academy
  • Shannon - Westlake Elementary
  • Shayna - Southeastern Elementary
  • Susan - Mar Lee School
  • Patti - St Joseph Elementary

The KCCU Teacher Grant Program is open to all educators, Pre-K through grade 12, who teach within the 15 counties that KCCU serves.

 


KCCU Receives Best Workplace Award10/14/2022

 

SW MI First presents Best Workplace award to KCCU team members

Photo caption: Pictured from L-R: SWMI First Chamber Director, Clarence Lloyd; KCCU CEO, Tracy Miller; KCCU CCO, Amber Mallernee; KCCU VP of HR, Jessica Bissenden; SWMI First Chamber Membership & Events Coordinator, Kevin Crittenden; Chamber Ambassador, Rex Simpson, Owner of Hobby-Sports

 

KCCU receives Best Workplace award

October 14, 2022

Kellogg Community Credit Union is thrilled and honored to announce that we have received the Best Workplace award for 2022 by the Southwest Michigan First Chamber!

The 2022 Chamber’s Choice awards exist to partner with our community to recognize and celebrate the businesses and leaders that are making a huge impact in Kalamazoo County. There are currently (8) Chamber’s Choice awards and (10) Best of Kalamazoo County awards. One of the Best of Kalamazoo County award categories is Best Workplace which recognizes an organization that is a leader in workplace employee happiness, engagement, culture, retention, and attraction. Based on this description and after the votes were tabulated, Kellogg Community Credit Union received the highest total number of votes in this category!

“The Southwest Michigan First Chamber is honored to celebrate the team at Kellogg Community Credit Union as the winner for the Best of Kalamazoo County – Best Workplace award for 2022,” stated Clarence Lloyd, Director, Southwest Michigan First Chamber. “There has never been a more critical time for companies to focus on building world-class employee culture and serving their business mission by first serving their teams. Congratulations to the team at KCCU for being awarded this community recognition.”

“We feel truly honored to receive Southwest Michigan First’s 2022 Best of Kalamazoo County Award for Best Workplace!” said Amber Mallernee, KCCU’s CCO. “KCCU was nominated and selected by public vote, based on our workplace culture and engagement. We are incredibly grateful for our team, our members, and the community!”

 


KCCU to Open Convenient New Branch in Downtown Marshall3/4/2022

Future Marshall branch

February 23, 2022

We are excited to announce that our Marshall branch will move to a new location in 2022! KCCU recently purchased the historic building located at 107 N. Park Avenue – across the street from the Brooks Memorial fountain and just down the road from their current branch.

The new branch location will allow KCCU to offer members more convenient ways to do their banking with access to drive-up banking and a 24-hour ATM.  We will continue to offer a full array of financial services for a one stop shop experience, including: assistance with daily transactions; savings and high dividend checking accounts; auto and other loans; mortgages; investment services; commercial accounts including lending ­- all with the world-class and local service KCCU members deserve. 
 
“We have been a part of the Marshall community for 13 years, and during that time, we have enjoyed establishing relationships with the people and local businesses in the community,” stated Tracy Miller, KCCU’s CEO. “The new location will allow us to enhance the member experience by having the convenience of doing banking through a drive-up or by coming in the branch. We look forward to serving our existing members as well as new members and businesses, in our new larger building.  We encourage the community to stop in and see us when we open, we look forward to meeting you!”
 
Over the next several months KCCU will be working to renovate the space of their new permanent home by the fountain in Marshall. KCCU will continue to serve members at their existing location at 15877 W. Michigan Ave. next to Family Fare, until their new branch is open. Watch for updates over the next few months on KCCU’s social media pages.

KCCU Featured in CreditUnions.com Article3/1/2022

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Kellogg Community Credit Union was featured in a recent creditunions.com article. The article showcases KCCU's balance between loan growth and member impact, and how KCCU strives to provide greater value in the products and services offered to members. Want to learn more? Read the article here.