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Assistant vice-president of HR
ISLAND SAVINGS (A DIVISION OF FIRST WEST CREDIT UNION)
Following the integration of Island Savings into First West Credit Union in 2015, Ilka Bene was instrumental in the communication and implementation of all people services-related decisions for Island Savings. She has led a number of change projects, including harmonizing policies, job titles, and the compensation and benefits program at Island Savings, in addition to overseeing software system conversions and leading union relations/collective bargaining.
Most important, Bene worked to keep the balance between developing a shared culture and retaining a local culture, ensuring that policies and practices remained aligned with the parent organization while the implementation and outcomes were localized. To ensure that employee engagement remained a priority, Bene chaired a committee called Islands’ Voice, which served as the testing ground for new ideas, projects and policies. As a result, Island Savings’ engagement score for 2016 was the highest within First West’s regions.