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Local Nationals in Bosnia and Kosovo Receive Social Benefits for First Time

General Manager Lori Maggard, kneeling, poses with local residents who work for the Exchange’s new Subway at Kosovo’s Camp Bondsteel.

 

Local nationals in Bosnia and Kosovo are receiving retirement, medical and dental insurance and other benefits for the first time since Exchange operations began there more than 18 years ago.

“This is truly one of the great team efforts I have witnessed in my career,” said Jason Rosenberg, senior vice president of the Europe/SW Asia Region. “Without the coordinated diligence of a wide range of Human Resources, Procurement, Finance and Accounting and General Counsel associates, along with the unwavering commitment and approval of Exchange Director/CEO Tom Shull, this would have never happened.”

Commitment, loyalty

EVP and Chief HR Officer Leigh Roop emphasized the commitment and loyalty of the associates from the Balkans in Southeast Europe.

“Most of our team has worked for us in Bosnia and Kosovo since 1999-2000 when the Exchange began operations in those countries,” Roop said. “There was no mandatory social benefits program for employers at the time, especially on NATO installations.”

Roop noted that when Exchange leaders were presented with the need, they “responded without hesitation.”

‘Great example’ of Exchange’s Core Values

With this development, 72 local nationals working in Bosnia and Kosovo are now receiving:

  • Retirement
  • Medical and dental insurance
  • Extended contracts (three years vs. previous one year)
  • Holiday pay or holiday off – 11 days per year
  • Unemployment benefits
  • Maternity leave
  • Annual pay increases going forward that are in line with overall local national increases in Europe
  • Service awards every five years

Rosenberg said that this undertaking is a great example of the Exchange’s core values—Family Serving Family, Respect Everyone and Courage to Use Good Judgment.

“This project was incredibly complex and became much more taxing than anticipated. But, we have truly ‘changed the game’ for these dedicated teammates,” Rosenberg said.

Exchange History FunFact

The Exchange in Croatia, early 1990s.

1992

The year the Exchange first entered the Balkans. The Exchange was called to Zagreb, Croatia, to help in U.N. relief efforts of refugees fleeing ethnic violence in Bosnia. 

Find out more about the Exchange in the Balkans in the History Flickr Album.

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2 Comments

  1. Richard A Koloski, retired VP-LP on December 14, 2018 at 6:13 pm

    This is great news to hear. Having witnessed first hand how dedicated our Bosnia and Kosovo Associates have been over the years I’m thrilled to see the Exchange standing by them. Many of these associates have also deployed in harms way and were among our most talented Managers in theater. Great job by Jason and Leigh and I’m sure Mr. Shull as well. The investment in these associates will continue to pay dividends to the Exchange for many years to come.

    • Steve Smith on December 14, 2018 at 8:17 pm

      Rich:

      Thank you for writing to your Exchange Post!

      Is there anybody else out there who would like to comment on the hard-working Bosnia and Kosovo associates? Type your words in the comment box. We want to hear . . . and so would they!

      Steve Smith
      Editor, The Exchange Post

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