Kathy Fennell works at BBVA US and wants you to know one thing: She’s passionate about volunteering, and she thinks you should be, too. “Volunteering is so rewarding,” says Fennell, a Relationship Support Specialist for the Commercial and Real Estate Group in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
“It gives you warm fuzzies, knowing that you’re helping someone, even if it’s one person. You need to get out there, and everybody should try it. Everybody’s got an opportunity to make this a better place anywhere you’re at, and you need to do it.”
Albuquerque Market CEO Kamal Ali, who’s worked with Fennell since 2000, echoed her commitment. “She’s so personally passionate about volunteering,” Ali says. “When you volunteer, you actually show the good part of you and impact the lives of other people. Kathy has the influence to get people that are sitting on the fence to see the benefit of volunteering on behalf of the community. We can take time to try to be of benefit to our people and our community.”
A life dedicated to helping others
Fennell, who celebrated 41 years with the bank in May 2019, is an outspoken advocate of community service who believes in giving back. She’s been active in her local volunteer scene for her entire career at BBVA. Groups she works with include Habitat for Humanity, Tender Love Community (which teaches homeless or semi-homeless people how to sew), and Wings for Life (a prison ministry that caters to families of incarcerated individuals). Her favorite, though, is the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta.
The Balloon Fiesta is the largest balloon festival in the world, showcasing more than 500 balloons every year and attracting hundreds of thousands of guests over the course of its nine-day run. One of the ways the event gives back to the Albuquerque region is by working with local charities and nonprofits to help staff its merchandise booths, then donate a portion of the sales to the charity.
Being up that high in the sky forces you to see things differently
She’s proud of the work she does, and she’s also proud of the company that encourages her to do it.
We Are One Team
Kathy says that her volunteering and her work at the bank interact with each other in the fact that the bank is so focused on helping in the community,
“BBVA does so much as far as helping employees go out and help the community, help each other, and as a result, it just brings a closer bond within the bank itself.”