Being named November Employee of the Month by the Little Falls Area Chamber of Commerce came as a surprise to Amy Scholl, human resources director at the Franciscan Sisters of Little Falls.
Scholl said the recognition means a lot to her and even more so given that the nomination came from Sister Carol Schmit the other sisters.
“It is an honor to be nominated by the Franciscan Sisters and chosen for this award. I feel blessed to be part of the Franciscan community as an employee with the support and friendship of the sisters over these many years. It is a great place to work,” Scholl said.
Having worked at the organization for 39 years, the nomination addressed her work over the years. It also highlighted her success as the chairperson of the organization’s Core Crisis Team in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“She handles all the tasks of the Human Resources Department. Over the years, she has hired and gotten acquainted with each of the lay employees, explaining to them the responsibilities and benefits of working for a non-profit organization. During the months of this troublesome COVID-19 pandemic, Amy has kept abreast of the protocols from the health department as they apply to us as an assisted living facility. She convened weekly meetings of all employees in leadership positions to make sure we understood the weekly changes. She clearly communicated these regulations to the sisters and staff. She has been an employer’s dream come true,” Schmit said in the nomination.
Despite the challenges the pandemic brought, the Franciscan Sisters of Little Falls is thankful for Scholl’s positive attitude and respectfulness to the sisters and other staff members.
“Amy is a valuable employee; personable and professional in all she does,” they said.
Looking back, Scholl said she started working a the switch board for the Franciscan Sisters in 1982, while she was still a student at the Little Falls Community High School. Desiring a career as a medical transcriptionist after she graduated from high school in 1983, she attended a school in Alexandria. However, it wasn’t until she started working as a medical transcriptionist that she discovered it wasn’t what she wanted to do full time.
“It was fascinating work as a transcriptionist, but I missed interacting with people,” she said.
In 1984, Scholl began working in the corporate office of the Franciscan Sisters as a full-time secretary. She was also working part-time at the hospital as a transcriptionist at the same time, but soon realized it was too much.
Scholl said it was during the four years of working in the corporate office that introduced her to the world of human resources. In 1988, she transferred back to the hospital and worked as a human resources assistant until 1992.
When the Franciscan Sisters advertised for a human resources position at the convent, Scholl said she applied and has been there ever since. It is a job she loves.
One of the things Scholl does is to handle all of the pension administration, including contacting former employees who once worked at one of the Franciscan Sisters’ health facilities or at the convent to start their pension benefits. To many, she said, it comes as a surprise as many years have passed since they worked for the Franciscan Sisters and kind of just forgot they had the pension benefit.
It isn’t unusual for people who once worked for the Franciscan Sisters to share their stories with her — a gesture she really enjoys.
“As far as the sisters, it’s just kind of a unique, special place. Many say when they walk into the building that they really can’t put their finger on what it is about the building and the space. For the most part, COVID aside, it’s pretty relaxed,” she said.
She also likes that the element of prayer and faith is present in the work place.
“It’s just kind of neat that you’ll have a conversation, visiting with a sister, and they’ll make a comment that they’ll keep you in their prayers. It makes it a whole different kind of work atmosphere,” she said.
When Scholl isn’t working, she enjoys spending time with her husband, Chris, their children Ryan and Kayla and grandchildren, Olivia, Jay and Gunner. Since they all live in Little Falls, Scholl said they are able to get together often.
Scholl also likes vegetable gardening, flower gardening, fishing, bicycling and more.
As Employee of the Month, Scholl received gift certificates from Coborn’s Marketplace, Heartland Tire, Melgram Jewelers, Papa Murphy’s, Subway and Vacuum Cleaner Outlet and Service Center.