Pamplin Media Group – Key Bank Employee Bank

KeyBank’s annual public service day shuts down banks and sends staff to community work

If you went to Woodstock Key Bank for business on Tuesday, September 14, you found it closed between 1 p.m. and 5 p.m. Once a year, bank employees engage in community service by working with volunteers from neighborhoods or organizations in need of a helping hand.

“We don’t do it easy,” commented Susan Williams, Key Bank Manager at the Woodstock branch. Williams was demonstrating the veracity of this statement as she spoke with THE BEE: she shoveled large woodchips into buckets at a temperature of 83 degrees and took them to areas around the Woodstock Community Center, where other volunteers of the bank distributed them. “I make bark chips at home, but these [wood chips] are heavier! ”she exclaimed, pushing the wheelbarrow over the old existing chips.

A total of six bank volunteers helped the Friends of the Woodstock Community Center with some maintenance work on the exterior of the building. Three volunteers were from the Woodstock branch – Susan Williams, Penny Gavett and Coral Braun, and three from the Hawthorne branch – CC Baxter, Udyog Subedi and Stefan Flores. Neighborhood volunteer Bea Rector also worked with the bank’s volunteers.

Before shoveling and rolling the chips, Braun and Williams patiently plucked Sweet Gum tree bramble balls from the old wood chips on the ground, to prepare for the new chips.

Baxter and Gavett dug dirt and clay in a 4 x 8 foot area in preparation for paving as an entry point for a future wheelchair ramp. Then Subedi and Flores from Hawthorne picked them up and continued to shovel and level the ground. Loads of soil were carried outside the fence to an area where Woodstock neighborhood volunteer Bea Rector had created a confined space for her.

“One year we went to the Dougy Center; another year to the Sellwood Community Center,” Williams explained of previous “Neighbors Make A Difference Days” during his eight years at the Woodstock branch. “And another year we went to Oaks Park and picked up some trash.”

Hawthorne branch manager CC Baxter remembers going to the Sunshine division for a year and unloading pallets of food for Sunshine’s Holiday food distribution. “And one year, we removed blackberries from the trails in the Columbia Slough watershed! ” she said. Gavett – who worked at the Woodstock branch long enough to remember the year they went to Meals on Wheels in Westmoreland and cleaned bathrooms, floors and ovens – agrees: ” We do the work that matters! And no one was complaining as they laughed, worked and sweated together again this year, under the supervision of Terry Griffiths, co-chair of Friends of the Woodstock Community Center, who was the coordinator for the day.

“What’s so nice is giving back to the community because there are a lot of volunteers in the neighborhood who need help,” said Williams, Woodstock branch manager.

For more information on Key Bank, go online at: – and, to find out more about their “Key4Women” program, which helps women succeed in business, visit: www / key4women

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