Likens Award

The James D Likens Award

Each year the prestigious James D. Likens, WCMS Alumni Recognition Award is given to honor WCMS alumni who have had significant achievement in the credit union field after graduation from the Western CUNA Management School.

Qualifying criteria for this distinguished award includes:

  • Significant professional growth in the individual's credit union career since graduation
  • Significant service to the credit union community after graduation


2021 Recipient: Kent Oram

Kent Oram began his credit union career 1984 as the Data Processing Manager for his credit union. He was promoted to Executive Vice President in 1986 and graduated from Western CUNA Management School in 1989.

In 2007, Kent became CEO of his credit union and has led them to become one of the fastest growing and best performing credit unions in the country. His vision at their credit union is to create a culture of love and he believes if the credit union invests in making their team members happy, they will pass that along to their members with great service. One of the things he is most proud of is the heart of their Green Team, which has come from their focus on improving and nurturing the workplace culture and environment.

During the worst of the pandemic, Kent took on a very visible leadership role in Idaho and sat on the Governor’s Economic Rebound Advisory Committee. He was also integral as a board member and supporter of a startup organization called Crush the Curve Idaho (CTCI), which was organized to keep Idaho’s businesses open and safe. While helping keep his state’s other businesses open and people employed, Kent kept the same focus on their credit union team, reassigning individuals to different job duties and managing to keep their staff intact through the pandemic without a single layoff.

Kent’s credit union has been named a top place to work in Idaho for the last ten years. His staff say this tremendous honor is indicative of their CEO’s heartfelt desire to make Idaho Central an employer of choice. In 2021 Idaho Central Credit Union was named as the #1 Best Place to Work in Idaho!

We congratulate our 2021 recipient of the James D. Likens Alumni Recognition Award, Mr. Kent Oram!

Past Recipients


Kent Oram, 2021
Shirley Cate, 2019
Teri Robinson, 2018
Shruti Miyashiro, California, 2017
Patsy Van Ouwerkerk, California, 2016
Mark Meyer, Wisconsin, 2015
Jon Hernandez, California, 2014
Chris Jillson, New Mexico, 2013
Annette Zimmerman, Texas, 2012
Susan Steifel, Washington, 2011
RaAnn Wood, California, 2010
Brett Martinez, California, 2009
Ken Facer, Texas-formerly of California, 2008
Ava Milosovich, Oregon, 2007
John Janclaes, California, 2006

David W. Brehmer, North Carolina, 2005
Shon Wellborn, California 2004
JoAnne LeCouvre Kersey, Oregon, 2003
John Annaloro, Washington, 2002
Diana Dykstra, California, 2001
Terry Parkyn, California, 2000
Marsha Burgess, Nevada, 1999
Winifred Corey, California, 1998
William G. Ferrence, Nevada, 1997
James M. Sasahara, California, 1996
Rick Craig, Utah, 1995
Beverly Dawson, California, 1994
Bernie Ray, Arizona, 1993
David E. Maus, Colorado, 1992
Richard M. Johnson, California, 1991

Nominations are now being accepted for the James D. Likens Alumni Recognition Award. This award is presented to the recipient during school each July as part of the graduation ceremony.

Nominees must have graduated from the Western CUNA Management School, or any other name by which it has been previously known, a minimum of five years before the date of presentation of the award on Graduation Night. Members of the WCMS Alumni Association Board, the Western CUNA Management School Board of Trustees and current members of the Selection Committee for this award, are not eligible.

For more information and nomination forms contact:
Patty Jiminez,
Ryan Olsen,
Denise Mattice,