Oregon Bankers Association Presents the 2011 Community Applause Awards to Isler CPA and Sherm's Thunderbird Discount Markets and Food 4 Less

Dec 13, 2011, 20:10 ET from Oregon Bankers Association

SALEM, Ore., Dec. 13, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Oregon Bankers Association (OBA), in partnership with the Independent Community Banks of Oregon (ICBO) and OregonBusiness magazine, recently announced that Isler CPA and Sherm's Thunderbird Discount Markets and Food 4 Less are the recipients of the 2011 Community Applause Awards. Founded in 1996, the award competition is open for banks doing business in Oregon to nominate their business customers in recognition of their service in the community. Since their inception, 31 Oregon businesses have been recognized, including this year's honorees.

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During the OBA/ICBO Annual Directors & Officers Winter Conference in December, OBA President and CEO Linda Navarro presented a commemorative plaque to representatives from both companies who also each received $1,000 to be donated to a non‐profit organization of their choice. Isler CPA's donation went to United Way of Lane County and Sherm's selected Kids Unlimited. The award ceremony also included a video presentation about each award recipient. These videos are available for viewing online at www.oregonbankers.com/community/applauseawards.

Nominated by Hal Brown, CEO, and Vicki Gray, senior vice president at Pacific Continental Bank, Isler CPA won in the Business with less than 50 employees category. One of the many ways Isler CPA gives back to their community is through volunteerism. Isler encourages and supports volunteer service by giving all owners and employees a minimum of 50 hours of paid time each year for volunteering. Last year, Isler's six owners and 27 employees provided approximately 2,550 paid hours of service to their community.

The Isler team has also been a long supporter of the United Way Day of Caring and previously entered in the ACS Relay for Life and volunteered as a group at the Eugene Celebration. They have raised money for Food for Lane County by collecting donations from employees who participate in Isler's casual Fridays at work.

Isler provides $60,000 of direct monetary support annually to various community organizations. Just over half of this support goes to arts organizations. Isler has been a strong supporter of United Way for many years due in large part to the encouragement and example of three of the owners who have served on the United Way board, including one who is the current United Way Campaign Chair. Isler has been among the top 30 workplace campaigns in Lane County for several years.

"We are extremely honored that Isler CPA has been selected for the Oregon Bankers Associations Community Applause Award," said Brown. "This company deserves full credit for the recognition. Their desire and focus on helping our community flourish, in addition to their ongoing commitment to providing exceptional client service, truly makes a difference and serves as an inspiration to others."

Sherm and Wanda Olsrud, owners of Sherm's Thunderbird Markets in Medford, Klamath Falls and Roseburg and Sherm's Food 4 Less in Medford, won in the Business with 50 or more employees category. Sherm's was nominated by Linda Couch, senior vice president of sales and service, and Brad Webster, vice president and regional credit administrator at South Valley Bank & Trust.

Sherm and Wanda Olsrud have set the "gold standard" for charitable giving in Southern Oregon for over 60 years. They are known as selfless people who give willingly but in a humble fashion. Through the Olsrud's grocery business, Sherm and Wanda have invested their success back into the communities they serve in Douglas, Jackson, Josephine and Klamath Counties.While their contributions vary, they have a special focus on youth related activities and have established the Olsrud Family Funds for general charitable purposes.

Schools and programs for children have been a top priority for the Olsruds. They have set up several scholarships and supported local schools and after school programs for at‐risk youth, including a $250,000 donation to Kids Unlimited to build a gymnasium.

For over 40 years, the Olsruds has personally attended countless area 4H and FFA Junior Livestock Auctions. They have supported youth by purchasing animals and investing hundreds of thousands of dollars. When Jackson County was in need of a place to judge livestock and hold auctions, Sherm and Wanda donated $400,000 to construct a 20,000 square foot arena at the Jackson County Fairgrounds. People who know Sherm and Wanda Olsrud will tell you that they aren't in it to boost their business or to showcase their generosity, but to simply give for the joy of giving.

"We are very pleased with this well deserved recognition for the Olsrud family. For 63 years, they have played a vital role in several of our communities. Not only have they helped countless families, but they inspire others to give willingly, generously and humbly," commented

About The Oregon Bankers Association

Established in 1905, the Oregon Bankers Association is Oregon's only full‐service trade association representing state and national commercial banks, thrifts and savings banks chartered to do business in Oregon. More information is available at www.oregonbankers.com.

SOURCE Oregon Bankers Association