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First Merchants Gold Shield Awards 2022

Wednesday, March 2, 2022

First Merchants held our 2022 Gold Shield Awards on Tuesday, March 1, 2022 at the Embassy Suites Conference Center, Noblesville, Indiana. The day was focused  on recognizing our best and brightest, providing 40 awards in the areas of Sales Excellence, Service Excellence, Cornerstone Excellence and Community Excellence.

The Gold Shield Awards Celebration was created in 2007 to encourage top performance and recognize those who excel and serve as role models to all of us. As we strive for excellence, some among us stand out as exceptional professionals who combine this critical blend of performance and attitude.

The Gold Shield Awards honor employees based on performance in any of these three main categories:

Service Excellence:

Recognizes employees that have an unwavering focus on their customers – internal or external.

Cornerstone Excellence:

Recognizes employees on our administrative support teams that demonstrate commitment to service and efficiency.

Community Excellence:

Recognizes employees who demonstrate commitment to our community heritage through volunteer leadership service.

Sales Excellence awards are also given to honor employees. In 2022, the Sales Excellence awards will be presented at our annual Retail Rally, Commercial and Private Wealth Advisors conferences. Recipients are selected by the managers in each of the following lines of business:

  • Mortgage
  • Commercial Banking
  • Consumer Banking
  • Private Wealth Advisors



Congratulations to our 2022 Winners!


JessHopkins StephMadison
Jess Hopkins, Market Leader | Fort Wayne Stephanie Madison, Team Lead | Corporate Social Responsibility
AutumnSelf JelissaOquendo
Autumn Self, Client Relationship Rep | Lambertville Jelissa Oquendo, Banking Center Manager | Hammond



Deborah Rynearson
Director, Mortgage Operations, Mortgage Processing

Samantha Humbert
Commercial Administrator, Commercial Loans

Dixie Mullins
Training Development Partner, Bank & Consumer Operations

Sarah A. McKenzie
Manager, Operations, Bank & Consumer Operations

Heather Gigliotti
Treasury Management Officer, Treasury Management

Sherry Holtzclaw
Chief Compliance Officer, Enterprise Risk Management

Kathleen Elliott
Fiduciary Tax Administrator, Muncie Downtown PWA Administration

Stephanie Clark
Banking Center Manager, East Jackson Consumer Banking

Jane Smith
Director, Retirement Plan Services, Muncie Downtown PWA Retirement Planning




BrianRamsey EricSegal
Brian Ramsey, Digital Marketing Specialist Eric Segal, Manager| Learning, Dev, & Performance
MichelleCohee CathyWhitesel
Michelle Cohee, Operations Analyst Cathy Whitesel, Manager | Commercial Administration
MichaelGates KimberlyCompton
Mike Gates, Site Support Analyst Kimberly Compton, Lead | Commercial Administration
JasonRicker KatieChristianson
Jason Ricker, Senior Software Business Analyst Katie Christianson, Assistant Director | Operations
AngieThomas BrianMeans
Angie Thomas, Manager | HR Shared Services Brian Means, Senior Business Intelligence Analyst

NOT PICTURED: Bianca Mirisola , Manager | Commercial Administration




2021 PPP Credit Origination Team

Aaron Moneyhun
Credit Database & Reporting Analyst

Holly Hickman
Credit Administrative Specialist

Kyndall P. Spears
Team Lead, Credit Analysis

Alyssa N. Block
Compliance Officer

John Hiatt

Lori L. Bollock
Corporate Credit Department Manager

Amber Lockridge
Credit Analyst I

John Teshima
Line of Business Chief Credit Officer

Michelle Zimmerman
Manager, Credit Department

Chad Speedy
Team Lead, Credit Analysis

Jonathan M. Tripp

Morris Franklin
Senior Access Developer

Courtney K. Thompson
Team Lead, Credit Analysis

Jonathan Thornburg
Regional Chief Credit Officer

Rebecca Newell
SBA Program Manager

Danielle Gibson
Credit Administrative Specialist

Julia M. Prien
Credit Analyst III

Scott McAnaul

Darren Bridge
Manager, BBC Small Business Underwriting

Karen L. Ross
Credit Analyst III

Stephen Diamantos
Credit Analyst I

Elaine McCarthy
Business Banking Underwriter II

Kathleen Bulthuis
Regional Chief Credit Officer

Stephen McLaughlin
Senior Manager, Credit Department

Elizabeth Doogs
Credit Administrative Specialist

Kathy Carter
Credit Administrative Specialist

Todd A. Burklow
Line of Business Chief Credit Officer

Garrett J. Leeper

Kevin Smith
Line of Business Chief Credit Officer

William Ruzich
Credit Analyst III

Gayle Williams
Credit Administrative Specialist

Kristin McDermott
Business Banking Underwriter III




CSR Marketing Activation Team

Julian Broggio
Director, Line of Business Marketing

Susan Conyers
Director, Line of Business Marketing



Debbie Smith | Banking Center Manager, Monticello




AdamSteiner AnneCurran
Adam Stiener, Mortgage Consultant | Lakeshore Anne Curran, Commercial Administrator | Indianapolis
ChelseaHundley EvaKreps
Chelsea Hundley, Private Wealth Admin Specialist Eva Kreps, Retirement Plan Advisor

Not Pictured:

Autumn Green, Merchant Sales Associate

Clay McIntosh, Client Relationship Representative

Morgan Ganka, Treasury Management Sales Associate  




Commercial Fulfillment Group

Aaron J. Hutchinson
Commercial Fulfillment Specialist I

Jerry Smith
Commercial Fulfillment Specialist III

Matthew Perry
Commercial Fulfillment Trainee

Amanda Smith
Manager, Commercial Fulfillment

Jessica L Evans
Commercial Fulfillment Trainee

Michelle Wiley
Commercial Fulfillment Specialist I

Christie Ford
Director, Commercial Fulfillment

Kaitlan Marie Morris
Commercial Fulfillment Specialist I

Misty King
Manager, Commercial Fulfillment

Christopher Wright
Commercial Fulfillment Trainee

Kaylee D. Beaty
Commercial Fulfillment Specialist I

Pierson Quinn
Commercial Fulfillment Specialist III

Haley J. Knox
Senior Operations Analyst

Lucinda Bowen
Commercial Fulfillment Specialist I

Suzanne Kleifgen
Commercial Fulfillment Specialist II

Heather Nunley
Commercial Fulfillment Specialist I



Sawmill Courier Operations | Commercial Deposits / Ohio Virtual Branch

Beverly Stanley
Operations Specialist

Darryl Warner
Mobile Services Courier

Debra Kinderman
Operations Specialist

Dennis D. Smith
Manager, Mobile Services

Keith Brewster
Mobile Services Courier

Larry Reichley
Mobile Services Courier

Mylinda Armitage
Operations Specialist

Randall Yoakum
Mobile Services Courier

Richard Alexander
Mobile Services Courier

Savannah Norris
Manager, Operations

Tina L. Smith
Team Lead, Deposit Operations Specialist

William Rackett
Mobile Services Courier