Stephanie Schwenn Sebring

Letters of Recommendation

Susan Balbaugh

Recommendation for Stephanie Schwenn Sebring

Dear Hiring Manager,

Stephanie worked in the marketing department of a large credit union when I came on board as the department manager. In a very short period of time, I came to rely on her as my most trusted and reliable team member. The quality of her work exceeded my expectations in all ways and I found her to be creative, extremely productive and efficient, as well as the most talented writer I have ever known in the workplace.

With 25 years of marketing experience, Stephanie certainly has the skill and experience to do just about anything in the arena of this industry, including multi-tasking, excellent time management, speedy turn-arounds, advanced creativity, wonderful written and oral communication skills, budget management, campaign management, event planning and execution, and everything you’d expect from a seasoned marketer. But what sets her apart from the rest is her extreme passion for the world of marketing, her inherent empathetic nature which allows her to create campaigns and write copy that truly speak to and motivate the reader, and her commitment to her clients’ or employer’s success, even to the point of self-sacrifice.

Here are a few examples to explain what I mean:

1)      Over the years, many marketing managers came and went from the credit union and every time that happened, Stephanie stepped in to fill the role. Despite the fact she had chosen to work part-time and work-life balance was important to her, she took over the manager’s duties and ran the department, often for months at a time. Though she could have had the manager’s job at any time, she did not want to lose the hands-on work she loved, so quietly handed the reigns over to the new managers as they came on board.

I was one of those managers. Thanks to Stephanie, I found myself taking over a job that had been managed very well. She made the transition easier than I could have hoped and greeted me with open arms, demonstrated her commitment to excellence, and her exceptional team spirit.

2)      One of our divisions was considered a bit of an orphan and few resources went into it. Yet Stephanie saw the potential and took over the marketing of the division, creating an entire calendar of campaigns and events to resurrect the sales. Not only that, but she elevated the entire division through internal communications, campaigning for the division to receive its share of resources, and teaching others, including the division VP, the value of a strong partnership with the marketing department. Today that division is an industry leader amongst Southwest Michigan credit unions.

3)      It wasn’t long before I came to understand that Stephanie’s writing ability is truly a gift. I’m a very good writer myself so feel confident in evaluating her skills. She continuously wows me with her ability and even today, as I read her work at times, I feel so proud of her and envy her skill. She writes with such ease and fluency demonstrating a level of professional writing I have yet to see from anyone else.

At the credit union, she wrote not only for the marketing department but for all of the other departments as well as the VPs and the CEO. She was the acknowledged queen of the pen and we all turned to her for newsletters, ad copy, collection letters, mortgage letters, web and blog copy, newspaper articles and other PR, editorials, all speeches, historical articles, and other CU documentation. I used to kid her about being able to tell someone “no” in a letter or email so eloquently, the reader was thanking her by the time they got to the end.

These are just a few examples. If you would like to discuss how Stephanie’s skills would fit your needs, please do not hesitate to contact me on my personal cell phone at 231-290-0707.

Sincerely,

Susan Balbaugh

Kit Snyder

President & CEO, Consumers Credit Union

Dear Hiring Manager,

I am writing this letter to express the delight I have had in having Stephanie Sebring as my employee for 22 years. I have also had the pleasure of having employed her at two very different times in our company: first, at the beginning of a growth era for Consumers Credit Union, in 1989, when she built our marketing department from the ground up: and, at a second interval, when she rejoined our senior management team, in 1994, to lead the department and credit union to record growth, always upholding a strong mentality and a focus on integrity and kindness to those around her.

Stephanie eventually transitioned into a specialized part-time role within the credit union as her family needs changed. She managed the marketing department part-time for a number of years and then decided upon a unique, niche position where she would serve a new Vice President of Marketing, playing a key role in his success, while providing mentorship and support.

Her capacity continued to evolve over the years: she played an integral role in strategic planning and recommended plans of action; she was visionary in the development of our marketing and media plans; she devised meaningful, pertinent, and creative communications for our members (now approaching 50,000) to improve the quality of their financial lives; she developed and managed our scholarship program since its inception; she’s written hundreds of newsletters and press releases and handled the most intricate of communications for me personally; she’s also assisted with speech writing and many other confidential corporate communication needs. Most recently, Stephanie embraced the potential of our social media strategy – providing content marketing for these new channels and creating a tremendously successful blog.

One thing I realized early on with Stephanie – she is a remarkable writer. She can take words and frame them in a way that is meaningful to members – educational for staff – or persuasive as the situation dictates. Often, she assisted with my personal writing requests to present ideas or offer areas of influence; for example, when persuasive writing is essential for communicating with trade associations or political entities, business partners, community leaders or other key individuals. And, she can write to meet the tones for member needs; or provide a tactical approach, which is required for presenting ideas for program development, compliance, or financial trends within our industry.

We had hoped Stephanie would continue her role with us as Senior Writer and Publication Coordinator; instead, she has chosen to start a new adventure. I would be pleased to always have Stephanie on my staff and highly recommend her for any position or path she chooses. I wish her the absolute very best in all of her future endeavors.

Sincerely,

Kit Snyder, President & CEO, Consumers Credit Union

Lynne Jarman-Johnson

Chief Marketing Officer, Consumers Credit Union

Dear Hiring Manager,

I am writing this letter to provide my personal recommendation for Stephanie Sebring, who worked for me as Senior Writer and Publication Coordinator at Consumers Credit Union. I came to the credit union in the fall of 2011; and, immediately we created new team synergy. Stephanie took on the role of Senior Writer, Editor with success. She has proven herself to be a lifelong learner, with a willingness to embrace change and do every part of her job with the highest quality standards.

Her writing skills are superb. As Senior Writer, she handled all of our corporate writing needs – from newsletters to press releases, annual reports and direct mail, to speeches and content marketing for Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.

Stephanie’s efforts and innovation also readied us for launching a highly successful blog in January of 2012. She was responsible for the blog’s day-to-day content along with the scheduling of educational articles to engage readers. Periodically, she invited guest writers from within the credit union and served as editor for their work. With her typical enthusiasm, Stephanie fully embraced the project; and by October 15th, the blog had surpassed 10,000 views! This, I believe, is one of her greatest accomplishments under my tenure.

I am appreciative for the opportunity to have had Stephanie as an employee, I recommend Stephanie for any position or career she chooses.

Sincerely,

Lynne Jarman-Johnson, Chief Marketing Officer, Consumers Credit Union

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