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Monday, April 25, 2016

Pinnacol receives "Dr. Ben Galloway Community Partner of the Year Award

Pinnacol was honored to be recognized by the Bonfils Blood Center Foundation as its "Community Partner of the Year" at the Foundation's Annual Lifesavers Breakfast on April 19th. The award is named for Dr. Ben Galloway, who played a key role in the creation of the Foundation in 1995 and continues to serve as a Foundation board member today.

"To be honored in connection to the commitment that Dr. Ben Gallaway has made to our community is humbling. We are simply following the example he has set for all of us," shared Edie Sonn, Pinnacol's vice president of communications and public affairs.

(Pictured at left, left to right: Susan Witkin, breakfast emcee; Bryan Krueger, Bonfils Blood Center president and CEO; and Edie Sonn, Matt Mckenzie and Chris Sautter (all from Pinnacol).

This recognition is directly tied to Pinnacol's multifaceted support of Bonfils Blood Center. "Pinnacol's commitment to Bonfils is longstanding and has strengthened in recent years," said Julie Scott, Bonfils Blood Center Foundation's executive director. "Our commitment is to provide a safe and plentiful blood supply for Coloradans, and Pinnacol's commitment to our mission is greatly appreciated."

At the awards breakfast, Pinnacol's support in four areas was highlighted:

  • Pinnacol has hosted onsite, quarterly blood drives for over 15 years. Through Pinnacol in Action (PiA), our employees are encouraged to utilize paid-volunteer-time to make regular blood donations. 
  • Through Pinnacol's community investment program, the company has granted Bonfils $30,000 over three years to support its "Build-A-Fleet" program. Statewide, more than half of Bonfils' blood donations are collected through mobile blood drives, yet its fleet of collection vehicles averages over twenty years old. The effort will help Bonfils both retain current blood donors and work toward its goal of a 20 percent increase in new blood donors by 2018.  
  •  Recent changes to Pinnacol's employee giving campaign model positively impacted Bonfils Blood Center. Since Partnership for Colorado was added to Pinnacol's giving options in 2015, employees are able to designate payroll contribution gifts to Bonfils throughout 2016. Those gifts are matched by Pinnacol. 
  • Terry Leve, Pinnacol's chief legal and corporate resources officer, serves as a director on Bonfils' Operating Board of Directors and provides volunteer leadership to support the growth and development of Bonfils' mission. 

Friday, April 22, 2016

"The more things change..."

"The more they stay they same. " At least that's how the old adage goes. Today sees the official opening of the RTD 'Train to the Plane' route that will wind it's way from Union Station downtown to Denver International Airport. Denver's commuter rail system of course is really nothing new, although today's routes cater more to modern needs. Old-time Denverites will remember riding trolley cars on the Denver Tramway system which operated from 1886 through 1950 when it sold its assets and operations to the City and County of Denver. The city continued those operations under the name Denver Metro Transit until 1974, when they were assumed by the voter-approved Regional Transportation District (RTD).

Denver Tramway route system toward the end of its 64 year run
Originally running on narrow gauge rails (3'6" wide versus the standard 4'8 1/2") the Denver Tramway ran a variety of streetcars through the years from horse-drawn Cars to Conduit Cars (where the power rails for conduit are contained in a vault between and underneath the running rails; Denver's system was the world's second electric street railway) to Cable Cars (where rail cars are hauled by a continuously moving cable running at a constant speed; individual cars stop and start by releasing and gripping this cable as required) to Trolley Cars. Today's riders of the new "University of Colorado A Line" will perhaps notice that the rail cars used on the trip to the airport are different from the Light Rail cars they are more used to. The University of Colorado, which has a sponsorship deal for the new route, precedes Denver's original Tramway system by 10 years having been created in 1876 five months before Colorado achieved Statehood.

The rate for the 22.8 mile 'A Line' journey is $9, or about 39 cents per mile. That's still a deal given that the
IRS calculates the current cost of operating an automobile for business purposes at 54 cents per mile. The original 1886 Tramway fare was a whopping 5 cents fixed rate that would allow you to ride all of the system's 8 miles. The Tram was as popular in its day as the new A Line is sure to be today. In 1877 the Tramway was operating 12 cars pulled by 32 horses and carrying more than 392,000 passengers. By comparison, RTD's first light rail line, a 5.3-mile (8.5 km) section (the 'D' Line) opened on Friday, October 7, 1994 and it was estimated that more than 200,000 passengers rode the new system during its two-and-a-half day opening weekend. That Friday-Sunday was free to ride as will be the A Line today and tomorrow.  Of course there was a slight difference in population between then and now - in 1880 Denver's population was 35,629 (does that mean they all rode the tram 11 times?) with today's Denver metro area boasting nearly 2.9 million and 100,000 people moving to Colorado in 2015 alone.

One of my coworkers, Doretha, took today off at least in part to be one of the first to ride the new route. I don't believe she's quite old enough to have ridden the original Tramway system but I'd hazard a guess that perhaps her parents did. She'll always remember riding the 'Train to the Plane' on the very first day of operation. What she probably doesn't know is that you can still ride one of the Denver Tramway cars. Now known as the Platte Valley Trolley, Car No. 25 is the last remaining, completely intact, electric railway car out of over 250 that once served the Denver area. Built in 1911 it runs along tracks between Sports Authority Field and REI's downtown store.

As I said, the more things change...

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Several New Opportunities with Pinnacol!

We have several new opportunities to join Pinnacol that we are excited about!

Our Actuary, Ken, is looking to bring an experienced Sr. Actuarial Analyst onto his team to develop actuarial, statistical, and predictive analyses and models to improve business processes and better differentiate loss costs and risk in our Company’s insurance portfolio.  The ideal candidate will have passed five Casualty Actuarial Exams and have five years of progressively more responsible experience in workers’ compensation insurance.  A Bachelor's Degree in Actuarial Science, Mathematics, Statistics or related area is preferred although relevant work experience (similar kind of work at a similar level of work as described in the essential duties) may be substituted for the education requirements.  Candidates for this type of role would be expected to be very adept with Microsoft Excel and some knowledge of data query programming preferred along with demonstrated project management skills, and excellent communication and presentation skills.

We are also looking for an Employee Services Assistant to provide administrative support to the Employee Services department which includes several of our teams including Human Resources, Learning & Organizational Development, and Wellness and Benefits Administration. Candidates for this role must bring a High School Diploma or GED (College degree a plus)  along with two years of administrative/clerical experience preferred. You should also have excellent verbal, written, interpersonal, communications and customer service skills and have moderate to advanced proficiency with Microsoft Office Suite including Word, Excel and PowerPoint. Strong attention to detail and the ability to manage multiple priorities, and the ability to maintain confidentiality for Company/department is also required.

Another administrative opportunity we currently have open is the role of Business Director Assistant. This position assists our Business Directors in performance of their duties, including providing administrative support, project management, handling customer issues, internal and external communications to our stakeholders, office management as well as assisting other insurance operations staff.  A High School Diploma or GED required (a college degree is a plus). Three years of related administrative work experience in a high volume environment required along with advanced PowerPoint and Excel skills. Health care or insurance industry strongly preferred.

We're also looking for a Medical Case Management Supervisor within our Nursing group to lead a high performing team comprised of Medical Case Managers and Utilization Reviewers and to ensure injured workers, Company and Stakeholders are provided best in class medical case management. An active CO nursing license in good standing is required along with five years workers’ compensation experience and five years people management.  Candidates should be knowledgeable of healthcare industry standards and trends and be willing to complete their Certified Case Manager certification (CCM) within two years of joining Pinnacol.

We have several other positions open and you can always view the complete list, as well as apply to positions of interest, on our company website. We look forward to hearing from you!

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

9Health Fair a success!

Today Pinnacol hosted the 9Health Fair for the 13th time and it was a great success. Our volunteers always enjoy the Health Fair as a chance to interact with the Lowry community. 9News (KUSA), the primary sponsor of the Health Fair, did a broadcast from our location as the Fair was getting started. Reporter Cheryl Preheim and Dr. John Torres were on hand and did a segment on the importance of sleep. There wasn't a lot of dozing off during the Fair as our guests kept us busy as they moved from one screening to the next. If you didn't attend today's Fair there are others around the state happening throughout April and into early May. You can find locations on the 9Health Fair site.

I'd be remiss if I didn't say thank you to all the folks, Pinnacol staff as well as outside medical
volunteers, who are instrumental in making this annual event a success. And a special thank you to all the community members who visited with us today and took an active role in promoting their own health!

Are you an experienced commercial insurance Underwriter?

Are you an experienced commercial lines insurance Underwriter? If so, we'd like to talk to you about exciting opportunities to join our company. Colorado’s robust economy is adding workload such that we need to increase our underwriting capabilities and we're looking for experienced Underwriters looking to move ahead in their careers. Exposure to workers’ compensation insurance and the Colorado market a plus but not required and we are willing to consider both in-state as well as out-of-state candidates looking to relocate for these opportunities. Ideally you'll also have five years or more of commercial insurance underwriting experience. This is a great opportunity to join Colorado's leading provider of workers' compensation insurance. Interested candidates are asked to complete an expression of interest via our company website.

Friday, April 8, 2016

Pinnacol hosts 9Health Fair for the 13th year next Wednesday

Next Wednesday, April 13th, from 7 a.m. to noon Pinnacol will be hosting the 9Health Fair at our company headquarters at 7501 East Lowry Blvd. in Denver. More than 150 Pinnacol employees will be joining a large group of medical volunteers to provide free or low cost health screens to the community. Here are some of the screening services that will be available:

The following health screens will be offered at the fair this year:
Blood Chemistry Screening (blood draw) - $35
Blood Cell Count (blood draw)- $20
PSA (Blood draw for Prostate Surface Antigen) - $30
Vitamin D 25-Hydroxy Screening (blood draw) - $45
Hemoglobin A1c (blood draw) - $30
Colon Cancer Screening kit - $25
Blood pressure/Height/Weight - Free
Vision & Eye Health Screening - Free
Hearing - Free
Talk with medical professional - Free
Skin Screening- Free
Foot Screening - Free
Hand Screening -Free
Lung Function Screening - Free
Spinal Screening - Free
Sleep Apnea Screening- Free
Oral Health Screening - Free
Nutrition by Cooking Matters - Free
Stress Management - Free
Diabetes Risk Education by the American Diabetes Association
Colorado Quitline

Our friendly volunteers look forward to seeing you!
If you can't visit with us at our site there are locations around Colorado and dates through April and into May so there is no excuse for not visiting one of this year's Fairs. Of course, we'd love to see you at our location. Many of our employees have volunteered at all the Fairs held at our site and they'll take great care of you when you visit!

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Talent Acquisition roles now open at Pinnacol!

Only in Human Resources does one get the opportunity to post for one's own position! I'm fortunate to be able to retire from Pinnacol at the end of April after 19 years of service. As my LinkedIn profile has said since LinkedIn first went up: 

"My job is to attract great people to our company and I think I have the best job in the organization (although 600 of my co-workers might argue with me about that!). I've been with the company for 18+ years which is pretty rare in today's world, but which speaks volumes about the way my company treats us as employees!" 

With my leaving someone has to take up that role and I'm excited for whoever is selected to continue the work I've passionately pursued on behalf of this great company. 

Talent Acquisition, Recruiting, Human Capital Management - whatever you want to call it - it's all about being able to develop and implement staffing plans and strategies that ensure diversity, high quality, and cultural/organizational fit throughout the recruitment and hiring process. We're willing to look at candidates having 3+ years professional experience in a direct recruitment role. As you might expect, candidates should also bring extensive knowledge of the legal requirements for recruiting and hiring along with comprehensive knowledge of current and key HR practices-recruitment/staffing, employee relations, compensation, and employee development. PHR or SPHR designations are strongly preferred. If you have a passion for this kind of work we'd love to hear from you! We ask interested candidates to please complete our on-line application

When I first started I would have been faxing a copy of this job announcement over to our contact at the Denver Post to run in the Sunday (do I need to even say it: print) edition. That's where everyone looked for jobs back then. Now you can find out about jobs on your handheld mobile device. The technology has certainly changed but at the end of the day this is still very much a people business. That's what has kept me excited to come to work every day and hopefully that will remain the case for whoever assumes my role in the future!