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Troy, MI – October 15, 2019 —Edcor, a national provider of education benefits administration solutions, is pleased to announce that Sara Van Wagoner, Vice President of Corporate Growth, has been named an HR Executive of the Year for 2019 by the American Society of Employers (ASE). One of the nation’s oldest and largest employer associations, ASE’s nomination process identifies HR executives in four organization categories for work that distinguishes them in the field of human resource management. Van Wagoner was recognized in the for-profit/small employer category. The other three honorees are from Ally Financial (for profit/large employer), the University of Michigan (non-profit /large employer) and Macomb County (non-profit/small employer). Winners will be celebrated at ASE’s Annual Summit on Thursday, November 7, 2019 at the Detroit Athletic Club.
Edcor, which processed more than $238M in tuition assistance payments and supported more than 1.7M employees in 2018, has a 38-year history of working with employers to establish employee tuition assistance programs and, more recently, student loan assistance programs.
Van Wagoner has been a member of Edcor’s executive team since 2006, overseeing all HR activities of the organization and with additional responsibilities in the past ten years that include business development, marketing, strategic initiatives and multiple key channel market partnerships that have resulted in significant revenue growth.
When Van Wagoner joined Edcor in 2005 as Manager of Human Resources, she was challenged to build a solid HR program in the ensuing years as the company weathered a loss of strategic focus, customers and employees. Following new ownership by current CEO Adrienne Way in 2010, Edcor adopted the mantra, “How Can We…?” that helped propel the company to the success it knows today. Using the “How Can We” theme, Van Wagoner stressed openness, introducing peer recognition awards, employee surveys, employee committees, and focused celebrations of both employee and company successes; the company adopted a new mission and value statement, beefed up benefits and even changed the company logo, colors and sales and presentation templates. Van Wagoner says all of these actions were intended to reveal a new, more focused and energized Edcor. Citing the importance of these changes, Van Wagoner asked, “How can employees feel differently about their company if everything still looks and acts the same?” In September 2019, Edcor was named among Detroit’s 101 Best and Brightest Companies to Work For.
Edcor owner and CEO Adrienne Way acknowledges Van Wagoner’s many contributions to Edcor.
“Sara has tremendous dedication and passion for what she does, and this is reflected in all of her successes,” Way said. “Sara embodies the values, spirit and culture of Edcor, and we are very proud to have her as a member of our leadership team and to congratulate her on the HR Executive of the Year award.”
Prior to joining Edcor, Van Wagoner worked in human resources for retailer Frank’s Nursery and Crafts. Having witnessed wide-scale store closings and the corresponding loss of jobs during her tenure, Van Wagoner’s experience there shaped her views on the critical, intersecting goals of human resources and business strategy.
Van Wagoner holds a Bachelor of Science in Psychology and a Master of Science Administration in Human Resource Management, both from Central Michigan University. She is a resident of Rochester Hills, Michigan.
Edcor, a certified woman-owned business, is the benchmark in education benefits administration. For more than 38 years, our customized service and software solutions have allowed clients to use education benefits programs, including tuition assistance and student loan assistance, for employee recruiting, retention and development. Additional information can be found at https://www.edcor.com/.
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