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Maintenance workers are the backbone of many organizations – they keep everything running smoothly, so that others can do their jobs more efficiently.

James Jannisch of Romeoville, with a warm smile on his face, spent over 40 years keeping things running at Ellsworth School (25 years) and Jefferson Junior High (17) in Naperville; and continues to employ his good-heartedness in everything he does.

Whether he is dropping off baked goods, sharing stories about his four grandchildren or simply greeting the Team with a warm smile, Mr. Jannisch has been inspiring the Naperville Team since the Branch Office opened over 20 years ago.

“My wife (Laura) and I make cakes,” Jannisch said, “So during the holidays we made a cake and brought it in (to Naperville)… We drop off cookies or donuts. A treat doesn’t hurt anybody.”

So it was with no surprise that two Naperville Branch Team Members nominated the retired Naperville Unit School District 203 maintenance worker to be our Second Quarter Inspiring Member for his kind spirit and generosity.

“It’s Mr. Jannisch’s nature to make everyone he meets feel appreciated,” said Daniel Sheehan, Member Services Associate. “So I wanted to make sure he knows that we also appreciate him.”

As part of our yearlong 60th Anniversary celebration, each quarter DuPage Credit Union Team Members submit the names of Members who have inspired and energized them. President Diane Shelton then selects the name of one Member whose dedication, advocacy or warm personality embodies the Credit Union’s common spirit.

“What inspires me about him is his cheerfulness each time he comes (into the Branch),” added Teller Associate Whitney Opare-Addo. As a way of saying thanks, Mr. Jannisch was awarded a $160 Visa® Gift Card for himself and a $60 Gift Card to pay it forward.

And paying kindness forward has been something he has been doing all of his life. “I try to be respectful of other people because I know it is hard,” he said, thinking back on how his widowed mother raised four children. “You never know (what someone is going through)…”

One moment that stood out to both Opare-Addo and Jannisch, was when he recently stopped by the Branch Office with his tablet in hand to ask for help with changes made to Online Banking. He remembers Whitney’s calm and reassuring manner while showing him how the new system worked, and she gratefully remembered his patience as she showed him through the new dashboard and its features.

“You feel comfortable with the level of people who work here,” he said. “Everyone is personable.”

It’s something he discovered when joining the Credit Union 34 years ago, after co-workers recommended it to him. Originally he banked at our Downers Grove location, shifted to Wheaton when his family moved to Warrenville and finally found a home at the Naperville Branch – since it was close to where he worked.

“They’re really nice here,” he said, “I stick with things that work.”

We think you’re really nice too Mr. Jannisch and would like to thank you for setting a fine example on how to treat others with kindness and respect. You have inspired our Team to emulate your thoughtfulness each and every day.

“Kind thoughts and kind gestures are contagious,” Sheehan said. “Members like Mr. Jannisch inspire me to do my best to make someone else’s day better.”

Member Services Associate Daniel Sheehan and Teller Associate Whitney Opare-Addo have both been inspired by Mr. Jannisch’s kind-spirit and generosity.

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