BLC Podcast Recap: Becky Ates
Becky is the Executive Vice President of Fort Knox Federal Credit Union, but the road to this position was one filled with challenges and hard work. While as a child she considered becoming a hairdresser and dreamed of going to go college, she knew she had to find her own way to make her educational aspirations come true.
“The job that I started in as a co-op student was in retail at a boutique in Radcliff. I finally ended up getting a job with a bank in the bookkeeping department and during that time, found I really liked what I was doing.”
Becky enrolled in classes at Elizabethtown Community College (now ECTC) and started as a part-time teller at Fort Knox Credit Union. Her boss at the time encouraged her to get her degree.
“It was like I had to take baby steps, one bite at a time. I got my Associates degree, then my Bachelor’s, and finally finished my MBA in 2009. You hear about career college students- that was me! But I was also working full time and raising a family, supporting my two daughters through school and sports. Looking back at it now, I wonder how I did it!”
Becky is an inspiration to her daughters, who watched her work late into the night and sacrifice time together to complete her education. Now that her daughters are grown, they are following her example.
In a recent conversation with her daughter who has returned to school to get her nursing degree, her daughter said, “you know why I can do this? I watched you. I saw you get your degree as a working mother and it taught me that you have to work hard to get where you want to go.”
There was something about the Credit Union family and the support system they provided which gave Becky faith that at some point she would move into a higher position within the organization despite having other options for her career.
“I’m so glad that I chose to stay with the Credit Union. Everyone truly believes we’re a family. Everyone supports one another and tries to lift each other up when they’re down. We’ve developed such a good working relationship here.”
Becky credits much of her success to the mentorship and encouragement of other women. You’ll especially love her story of how her sister continued to raise the expectations for Becky’s continued educational growth!
“You have to be authentic. If it means being silly, being serious, crying with someone, just listening, or really getting down to business and working harder than you’ve ever worked in your life, you have to be yourself. You have to be able to do those things to enjoy your job. If you come in and aren’t happy and can’t have fun, how long are you going to last in that role? That’s why we’ve created a culture where we value doing a good job and getting our work done but having fun while we’re doing it.”
Listen to the full episode to hear:
Hollie’s question about how to encourage others to continue their education
The most valuable lesson Becky has learned in her career
Megan’s favorite thing about co-hosting the podcast