U.S. Department of Commerce recognizes Elevations Credit Union for world-class performance serving members

The Boulder-based financial institution is a two-time recipient of the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award

BOULDER, CO (November 30, 2020) — Elevations Credit Union is honored to receive the 2020 Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award, the nation’s only presidential award for organizational performance excellence. The award was established in 1987 to recognize outstanding U.S. organizations setting world-class standards in competitiveness and measurable outcomes.

The Boulder-based financial institution was one of five recipients recognized from a field of 20 applicants for the 2020 award, and Elevations is one of only nine organizations to receive the award twice since 1988. Elevations is also the only two-time recipient in the nonprofit category, the only financial institution to receive the award twice in six years, and the only credit union to ever receive the award, based on the information shared by U.S. Secretary Wilbur Ross. 

“Receiving the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award for the second time is a testament to our dedication and commitment to our members and community,” said Gerry Agnes, President and CEO of Elevations Credit Union. “Twelve years ago, we chose to leverage the Baldrige framework in order to best serve our members. It has helped us do that and more — we have created a trusted, resilient financial organization that’s here to serve our members with financial solutions for a better life.”

“The 2020 Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award confirms Elevations Credit Union’s level of excellence,” said Kate Brown, Chair of Elevations Credit Union’s Board of Directors. “Working toward this award has inspired our team to continuously enhance our processes, products and services. This award is an incredible milestone, and we look forward to continuing on this path to best serve our loyal and growing base of members.” 

To receive the award, organizations are evaluated using the Baldrige Excellence Framework. The Framework focuses on seven areas: leadership; strategy; customers; measurement, analysis and knowledge management; workforce; operations; and results. Thousands of organizations worldwide use the Baldrige Criteria to guide their operations, improve performance and produce sustainable results.

The Baldrige application for 2020 showed how Elevations has excelled in the areas of process management, innovation, use of data and analytics, and testing and learning. The credit union has also been recognized for sharing best practices with other organizations through events like Sharing Days.

To be considered for the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award, an organization must receive the top award for excellence from its state or regional performance excellence program. Elevations Credit Union achieved this milestone by receiving the Peak Performance Award from RMPEx in 2013. The credit union also elected to apply for the RMPEx award in 2019 and received it a second time. The Peak Performance criteria is identical to the Baldrige criteria, and the Peak Performance Award is RMPEx’s highest honor. The Elevations Credit Union team would like to extend their gratitude to Rocky Mountain Performance Excellence (RMPEx) for supporting the credit union’s performance excellence journey with valuable feedback.

“Elevations Credit Union is a leader within the RMPEx community,” said Michael S. Gratz, RMPEx Executive Director. “Our mission is to deliver Baldrige-based guidance and support in partnership with our community of role model organizations. Elevations is held up as a role model by the entire RMPEx community, and their recognition as a Malcom Baldrige National Quality Award recipient for the second time is proof of their commitment to sustainable excellence.”

Elevations first received the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award in 2014. 

Elevations is one of nine organizations to receive the award twice, joining: Solectron Corporation (1991, 1997), The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company, L.L.C. (now Part of Marriott International) (1992, 1999), Texas Nameplate Company, Inc. (1998, 2004), Sunny Fresh Foods, Inc. (now Cargill Kitchen Solutions) (1999, 2005), MEDRAD (now Bayer HealthCare Radiology & Interventional) (2003, 2010), MidwayUSA (2009, 2015), Southcentral Foundation (2011, 2017), and MESA Products, Inc. (2006, 2012, 2020) — the first three-time recipient of the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award.

In addition, only five other Colorado organizations have been recognized with this award: CH2M Hill (now Jacobs Engineering Group, Inc.) in 2000, the Kenneth W. Monfort College of Business at the University of Northern Colorado in 2004, Poudre Valley Health System in 2008, City of Fort Collins in 2017 and Donor Alliance, Inc. in 2018.

About Elevations Credit Union

Elevations Credit Union empowers its members and the communities it serves along Colorado’s  Front Range with financial solutions and education. In addition to offering a broad portfolio of  consumer and business banking services, Elevations is the No. 1 credit union residential  mortgage lender in Colorado. Founded in 1952 as the U. of C. Federal Credit Union in Boulder,  the organization has grown from 12 members and less than $100 in assets to over 176,000  members, more than 580 local employees and over $3.4 billion in assets. Elevations became a  two-time recipient of the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award in 2020 and first received the  award in 2014. The credit union also earns local awards along Colorado’s Front Range for Best  Bank, Best Mortgage Lender, and Best Customer Service. Elevations was also an inaugural  winner in Denver Business Journal’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Awards. Learn more at


Kathleen Martin
Content Specialist
Elevations Credit Union

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