Supporter Spotlight - Rabobank


2020 has been a year of change, and like so much else, RDO Caters Taters has had to adapt. After spending months evaluating options, RDO team members and leadership ultimately decided not to host an RDO Caters Taters event this year. Even though this year we won’t have any delicious “pound”-tatoes piled high with toppings (not to mention all the other great parts of the event), the tradition of community support at the core of RDO Caters Taters for more than 20 years remains unchanged. This fall, we are still supporting a deserving organization, Valley Senior Services, and have been honored to have past RDO Caters Taters supporters join the cause in providing support, as well. One of those longtime supporters is Rabobank. Rabobank is among the world’s leading financial service providers, serving the agriculture and food industries. It’s also a cooperative, formed more than a century ago by people coming together to help one another. Through all the changes a century can bring, the spirit of making a difference remains central to Rabobank today, said Andre Baladi, Relationship Manager. “Community is very important to us and to our clients, we take that very seriously,” he said. In fact, Rabobank’s stated mission is “Growing a better world, together,” supported by seven Cultural Commitments, one of which is community involvement. The company offers a donation matching program for employees to support causes they’re passionate about, as well as paid time for volunteerism. “Employees want to engage with their communities, find more ways to do it, and know they have support from their employer,” Andre said. “It speaks to who we are.” In the midst of so many challenges in 2020, rather than paring back its community support efforts, Rabobank increased the support, doubling employees’ paid volunteer days from two to four and standing by the causes important to clients like R.D. Offutt Company. “We’re working remotely and doing things a little differently, finding new ways to connect, but nothing else has really changed,” Andre said. “In that respect, the way we view our support has not changed either.” Rabobank has been an RDO Caters Taters sponsor for many years and even drove the creation of a higher sponsorship level, the Platinum Potato, a few years back, challenging the RDO Caters Taters team to continue building on the event’s success, year after year. No event doesn’t mean there’s no need for help in the community, and Andre pointed out how continued support through trying times stems from the very nature of the organization. “We’re a bank, yes, but not one driven by quarterly performance and metrics as much as public companies,” he said. “Our mission is very much about doing the right thing for our clients and communities.” Andre said he’ll miss the opportunity to visit Fargo this year for RDO Caters Taters, but that he’s been strongly considering loading up a spud of his own and celebrating in spirit until the next event. --- Valley Senior Services serves thousands of seniors in our community each year, and they have felt the impact of COVID-19 in several ways – but the most pressing has been a significant increase in requests for their services. For years, the partnership and generosity of individuals and businesses has played a role in helping us raise nearly $770,000 for area non-profit organizations, and this year, there’s nothing stopping that tradition of community support. Learn more about Valley Senior Services and how you can donate to them directly.

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