BCBSM Director Earns Employee of the Year Honors for Advocacy
At just three years old, with a diagnosis of cerebral palsy, he was a poster child for the United Way at local auto assembly plants. That year, he helped the campaign earn nearly $400,000 in today’s dollars.
Decades later, Ken Bluhm, director of financial reporting at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, has been recognized for his tireless advocacy by the national CAREERS & the disABLED Magazine, which named him Employee of the Year.
“As a young man, Ken decided he wouldn’t allow himself or others to place limits on what he could do or accomplish,” said Jac Amerell, vice president and Controller, who nominated Bluhm for the honor.
“While he has lived life on his own terms, his cerebral palsy diagnosis has influenced both who he is and how he thinks. He’s overcome challenges most couldn’t imagine and appreciates the joy in everyday life, spending a significant amount of time giving back.”
Bluhm is on the board of United Cerebral Palsy (UCP) of Metropolitan Detroit. UCP works to advance the independence of people with disabilities and their rights to live self-determined lives. Through his leadership, UCP awarded Blue Cross its “Community Partners Award” in 2016.
Among many other community activities, he is on the board of the Accounting Aid Society, which provides free income tax preparation, financial management coaching and IRS assistance to middle and low-income households.
“Receiving the award was absolutely humbling and a tremendous honor,” Bluhm said. “It was largely the result of the great corporate culture at BCBSM and the long line of leadership support I have received throughout my career.”
During his 23-year career at Blue Cross, Bluhm has overseen business strategy efforts that have saved the company hundreds of millions of dollars. Beyond his financial skills, he is also known for his ability to build relationships.
For example, Bluhm took a leadership role in creating BrightBlue, the newest Employee Resource Network, which focuses on the differently abled. He is co-chair of the ERN with Pat Stone, director, BCN Administrative Services.
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