Congratulations to our 2015 TeamCS Award Winners!

Here at Opus, we take teamwork very seriously. Our overarching philosophy when it comes to our team can be summed up simply: We hire amazing people, guide them with strong values, and empower them to do great work with industry-best methodology. This formula drives success for our customers, and we call it TeamCSTM.

At each year’s end, during a special all-day agency offsite (this year’s theme: Heroes and Villains), we recognize select employees who’ve gone above and beyond to exemplify TeamCS values, as well two rock-star rookies. To get a better feel for this event, check out our post about Team Connect and our annual holiday party. Without further ado, here are this year’s winners:


The People award signifies an outstanding personal contribution to our team and our customers’ success. Winners of this award consistently produce outstanding work, exude knowledge and experience, show personal initiative, team spirit, effective communication, and don’t shy away from mentoring their peers.

Alex Huffman

Alex Huffman receives her People award.

Alex Huffman receives her People award.

Alex is a Technical Project Manager who has been with Opus since 2012. She works with the Technology team to coordinate the development of registration websites. Her organizational chops and aptitude for team management help her keep projects on time and on budget. Her coworkers had this to say about her:

“Time and time again I can rely on Alex to follow up on all her deliverables. I always know if I ask something of Alex she will have it done as quickly as possible.”

“Alex is always willing to help with anything and everything. She shares her knowledge with her peers while also delivering an outstanding product to our clients.”

“She isn’t fazed by tight deadlines or unruly clients!”

Dana Freeland

Dana Freeland takes home a People award.

Dana Freeland takes home a People award.

Dana is a Senior Manager of Client Services. Since joining Opus in 2007, she has used her strong team leadership skills, endless organization, and unwavering attention to detail to produce successful events and provide exceptional customer service to her clients along the way. Dana’s teammates had lots of praise for her:

“Dana is so skilled in everything she does! She is an excellent leader, mentor, and teammate. She always gives her work her all and produces consistent success!”

“Having worked her way through the Opus event operations and client services teams, Dana has the knowledge to motivate her team through tough times. She is an absolute team player and is respected by her peers.”

“Her quality of work is top notch, exemplifying the Opus standard. She creates Opus Raving Fans in the wake of all her work.”


The Values awards are given to Maestros who have shown a commitment to customer success through superior communication, management, mentorship, team and client retention, peer training, and plain hard work. These people embody Opus’ strong values, and are shining examples of how much fun it can be to create success.

Natalie Blakney

Natalie Blakney honored with a Values award.

Natalie Blakney honored with a Values award.

Natalie serves Opus as a Senior Account Executive. After starting as an intern in 2006, she rose through the program and event management teams before finally landing in Account Management. Her endless enthusiasm and exacting attention to detail make her a great asset to her clients and team members. Her coworkers had this to say:

“Natalie has taken ownership of one of our largest clients and has already built a great relationship with them. She has also poured a lot of time and energy into gaining business back. She has earned the confidence of our client, using their feedback to put the best team in place.”

“I could tell from the moment I first met Natalie she held herself to a very high measure of integrity and work ethic. It was also apparent that she expects her colleagues to work at the same level.”

“Natalie is a beautiful representation of Opus values. She has a great attitude when tackling the most challenging of situations and clients. You will always have a true partner and team player when you get to work with Natalie!”

Marissa Hagman

Marissa Hagman presented with a Values award.

Marissa Hagman presented with a Values award.

Marissa is a Manager of Client Services, producing high-level roadshows and chief officer-level events. since she joined the team in 2012. Her fellow team members didn’t hesitate to shower her in praise:

“Marissa has such a strong work ethic and an attitude that’s infectious. Her gracious approach to her team and clients is inspiring to everyone who works with her. She will give her all, no matter what project she is given.”

“From day one I have noticed what a hard worker she is, and how well she builds trust internally and with clients. It really shows that she has contributed to the success here at Opus.”

“Marissa has a knack for digging deep into each project and understanding the client’s hot-button issues. Her spirit is always positive!”


Our “Methodology” awards signify an outstanding contribution to our team productivity and the delivery of exceptional results. Award recipients demonstrate personal leadership in process innovation, technological acumen, customer experience improvements, metrics, documentation, and knowledge sharing.

Mike Presnell

Mike Presnell bags a Methodology award.

Mike Presnell bags a Methodology award.

Mike is a Lead Software Developer as part of Opus’ Technology team. He has been with Opus for just over 15 years, which puts him in an elite group of company veterans. He leads an internal team of software developers who continually raise the bar for customer experience and technological solutions. Mike’s coworkers had this to say:

“When I got here, Mike was tasked with setting the direction of the development team. He’s great at coming up with methods for keeping track of development tasks and keeping us all up to date on them.”

“Mike works tirelessly to improve our systems both internally and externally. He is always thinking about better ways to do business.”

“Mike is the complete package. He runs the development team with care and zeal. He’s also kind and seems to know the people he works with quite well. All that, and he can cook!”

Katie Welsh

Katie Welsh given a Methodology award.

Katie Welsh given a Methodology award.

Katie is the Director of Event Operations for Opus, focusing on team training and mentorship, simultaneously optimizing internal processes and procedures. She has earned her team members’ and coworkers’ admiration, who were overflowing with kind words for Katie:

“Katie can take on any challenge with grace and perfection. Nothing ever fazes her and you never doubt something will get done – above and beyond your expectations.”

“Katie Welsh epitomizes Methodology. She is making huge improvements on how we analyze events and streamline our best practices to ensure efficiency and effectiveness.”

“She is clearly dedicated to improving the internal processes of Opus, and thereby creating better relationships with our clients. Her insights are strategic in growing the business and in helping new hires to understand Opus’ goals and processes.”

Rookies of the Year

Attracting and successfully onboarding new employees who excel makes Opus a more successful company and a place where people want to work. Our Rookies of the Year embody a can-do spirit and fully embrace our company values—integrity in all we do—from Day One.

Briana Crider

Brianna Crider honored as a Rookie of the Year.

Briana Crider honored as a Rookie of the Year.

Briana serves Opus as an Event Financial Manager, working closely with event teams to manage budgets, perform financial forecasts, and analyze and prepare client financial statements. Briana’s success since she joined Opus in June has been astounding, and got her recognized as October’s SUPO (employee of the month). Her coworkers heaped on the praise:

“From her attitude to her mad Excel skills, Briana has made an impact from the moment she stepped in the door when it comes to financial management. She is a wonderful addition to the company and Opus culture.”

“Briana rocks at analyzing processes to make Opus better. She jumped in like a cannonball and began to train the team to be more efficient and to work smarter, not harder. She is amazing!”

“Briana came on board, was wound up and set free—she became our Energizer Bunny who has become a solid, trusted resource for our clients and our team.”

Kim Williams

Kim Williams named Rookie of the Year.

Kim Williams named Rookie of the Year.

As a Manager of Event Operations, Kim exemplifies a passion for details and an unmatched willingness to get the job done for our clients. Though Kim is relatively new to event management, these qualities have helped her excel in her role. Kim has been a perfect fit at Opus since she joined the team in January, picking up a SUPO award in June. Her teammates feel the same way, and had this to say:

“Kim is amazing. She continues to excel in her role on the Salesforce team. She is a true asset to the Opus family and we are so lucky to have her!”

“Kim is a true rock star. She came into Opus and blew everyone away with her dedication, her work ethic, and her upbeat personality. She really does embody everything Opus stands for. I absolutely love working with her.”

“She works hard, gets the job done and always has a smile on her face. She is always there to help and do what it takes to get the job done.”

If you think you’ve got what it takes to be an exceptional team member and a positive addition to our TeamCS formula, head over to our Careers page and take a look at our job openings. We could be calling your name at next year’s TeamCS Awards!

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