2018 Annual Report

we're here to reimagine healthcare

At Blue KC, we never stop asking the big questions, because that’s the only way we get to the big ideas. For 80 years, all our big ideas have had one thing in common: better healthcare for our members, partners, physicians and the community we call home. We’re here—for you.

President's Letter

Danette Wilson's Headshot

Danette Wilson | President & CEO

Blue KC has been a part of the Kansas City community since 1938, providing access to high-quality healthcare for our members and creating lasting partnerships with employers, brokers and providers.

But we know that in today’s evolving healthcare market, Blue KC must continue to adapt as we face new challenges and opportunities. That’s why we are reimagining healthcare and creating innovative solutions and experiences. The following pages tell the stories of some of the initiatives, programs and enhancements we implemented in 2018 and highlight the relationships that bring the stories to life.

I also want to share some personal news. I will retire in 2019 after 32 years with the company, including five as President and CEO. I’m very pleased to share that Erin Stucky, who I have worked closely with for 25 years, will be my successor. She is an exceptional leader and is well prepared to ensure Blue KC’s continued success.

Thank you for your support during my tenure as President and CEO, and please join me in congratulating Erin as she leads our company forward.

Danette Wilson signature

Care & Client Experience

we’re here to keep our members at the center of healthcare

If you make people your priority, everything else falls into place. It may seem simplistic, but it’s been proven to be true across all businesses – and it’s especially true of healthcare, where quality of life is at stake.

"We’re a local Kansas City business, so it’s important to us to work with other local companies when we can. Blue KC has been a tremendous partner in bringing new and innovative products to us while maintaining a solid, cost-effective foundation. For us, it’s the best of both worlds: a local relationship, with a national caliber of product, service and value." Aaron J. Greer, Director of Human Resources, Cosentino’s Food Service

"We have had a strong partnership with Blue KC since 2009. Our employees continue to enjoy great coverage across all of our locations." Jodie Hughey, Chief People and Communications Officer, Polsinelli

Spira Care

The first chapter of changing healthcare

One of the benefits of starting the Spira Care story from a blank page was that it enabled us to completely re-envision what the healthcare experience could look like.

Customer Experience

Now, Customer Experience isn’t just a department...it’s a culture

The Blue KC Customer Experience (CX) team has led the way in evolving the organization’s mindset to an "outside in" approach – where the customer relationship drives goal-setting and decision-making.

Diabetes Prevention

In the fight against diabetes, we’ve got your back

Blue KC partnered with Solera Health Inc. to begin offering a Diabetes Prevention Program (DPP), a new preventive care benefit available to eligible Blue KC members. The program teaches lifestyle changes that help participants lose weight and adopt healthy habits to avoid diabetes.

Remote Monitoring

Connecting our members to better health

The remote monitoring program has the potential to cut costs by reducing health complications and hospitalizations. But even more importantly, the program can save our members the costs – and the hardship – associated with these complications and hospitalizations.

Member & Community Health

we’re here not just to help you live longer, but to help you live better

Whether it’s offering affordable care for college students, helping provide specialty care for the uninsured, or working to eliminate food insecurity in our region, Blue KC is committed to helping the people of this region live longer, healthier, better lives.

"Our employee-base is truly an extended family, and as such, their health and overall well-being is of the utmost importance to our organization. We strive every day to make an impact in the Kansas City community, and part of that is through meaningful partnerships like Blue KC that extend our focus on employees." Lisa Ginter, CEO of CommunityAmerica Credit Union

Healthy KC

We’re going to need a new goal

Tobacco21 is a regional health and wellness program organized by Blue KC and the Greater Kansas City Chamber of Commerce aimed at addressing the health impact of tobacco use throughout the region.

Kansas City Medical Society

Logistics leads to better access for the uninsured

Partnering with the Kansas City Medical Society, Blue KC is able to help coordinate specialty care for thousands who might otherwise have to go without.

Blue KC Client Focus

Blue KC Client Focus

Blue KC serves many municipalities across multiple counties in Kansas and Missouri. We take great pride in the strength of our partnerships and our commitment to improving the health of the Kansas City community.

KC Health Collaborative

Leadership sparks community collaboration

What began as a dialogue among a small group of forward-thinking individuals has now evolved to become the KC Health Collaborative (KCHC)—a growing group of committed healthcare stakeholders from across the community.

Growth & Commitment

we’re here because a healthier community is a happier community

At Blue KC, our position is, what’s good for the Kansas City region is good for everyone, including us. We celebrate those who are helping to move community healthcare forward. We do whatever we can to strengthen this community – and improve not just the quality of care here, but the quality of life.

"We provide coverage for about 12,000 members in a large geographic area – and many of them travel throughout the U.S. for work. Because the Blue KC network is so extensive, our members are covered wherever they go; it’s easily the best and broadest coverage available to us." Jason Mendenhall, President and Business Manager of Heavy Construction Laborers Local #663

Well Stocked

We’ve made a commitment to help cure hunger in our community

The Well Stocked program, a partnership with local community organizations who share the same vision and goal of improving access to nutritious food for the people who need it.

Cristo Rey High School

Blue KC helps students prepare for the future

Blue KC partners with Cristo Rey High School to provide their students with an opportunity to earn real work experience and a way for them pay for their tuition.

Community Commitment

Blue KC Gives Back: Giving Campaigns Year in Review

In 2018, Blue KC employees volunteered over 10,000 hours, spreading them out over 25 Kansas City organizations. This joyful commitment to community is what makes our employees, and Kansas City, so special.


board of directors

Jack A. Newman, Jr.

Retired Executive Vice President, Cerner Corporation

Russell W. Kohl, M.D.

Chief Medical Officer, TMF Health Quality Institute

Anne D. St. Peter

Founder, Global Prairie

John A. Spertus, M.D.

Clinical Director of Cardiovascular Education & Health Outcomes Research, St. Luke’s Mid-American Heart Institute, Owner, Health Outcome Sciences

Cheryl D. Alston

Executive Director and Chief Investment Officer, Employees’ Retirement Fund of City of Dallas

Larry A. Rues, M.D.

Retired Faculty, Research Medical Center, Family Medicine Residency

Marilyn M. Rymer, M.D.

Blue KC Board Chair
Vice President, Neuroscience, The University of Kansas Hospital

Karon Harris Hicks

Blue KC Board Vice Chair
Retired Chief of Staff, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas City

James R. Roath

Blue KC Board Secretary
Retired Business Owner

Karen L. Daniel

Retired, Chief Financial Officer, Black & Veatch

Michael G. Valentine

Chief Executive Officer, Netsmart

Danette K. Wilson

President and CEO, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas City

Sam R. Reda

Retired Executive, Lockton Benefit Company

Garry K. Kemp

Retired Executive Vice President, Greater Kansas City Building and Construction Trades Council

corporate officers

Danette Wilson

President and CEO

Erin Stucky

President and CEO-Elect

Jenny Housley

Senior Vice President, Chief Marketing Officer

Scott McAdams

Senior Vice President, Chief Audit, Compliance and Risk Officer

Thomas Nightingale

Senior Vice President, Chief Financial Officer

Ron Rowe

Senior Vice President, Chief Operating Officer

Greg Sweat, M.D.

Senior Vice President, Chief Medical Officer

Kim White

Senior Vice President, Chief Administrative Officer

Jeff Berry

Vice President, Financial and Strategic Planning

Dan Frazier

Vice President, Operations

Coni Fries

Vice President, Government Relations

Dan Janatello

Vice President, Chief Technology Officer

Karen Johnson

Vice President, Healthcare Insights and Partnerships

Gregg Laiben, M.D.

Vice President, Employer Health Solutions

Kirby McDaniel

Vice President, Government Programs

Phil Merrell

Vice President, Chief Information Officer

Chad Moore

Vice President, Strategic Partnerships and Network Operations

Mark Newcomer

Vice President and General Counsel

Tim O’Brien

Vice President, Executive Director of Care Delivery

Dave Olsen

Vice President, Business Development

Wayne Powell

Vice President, Membership and Strategic Sourcing

Jason Spacek

Vice President, Chief Innovation Officer

Qiana Thomason

Vice President, Community Health

our mission

To provide affordable access to healthcare and to improve the health of our members.

Spira Care

The first chapter of changing healthcare

In 2018, the Spira Care story came to life. What started as a bold initiative to create a simplified healthcare experience for members—one that put them at the center of everything—became a reality as we opened the doors to the Shawnee and Olathe Spira Care Centers.

Based on our clients’ feedback, it’s fair to say the reaction has been positive.

“It’s the first time I’ve had employees excited about going to the doctor,” said Amy Willyard, Human Resources Director for Mortgage Lenders of America. “I’ve been doing HR for 25 years and I’ve never had employees come back and brag about our health plan.”

While this sort of response has helped validate our initial plans, we look to the data to tell us if our new approach to healthcare is working. And there’s good news on that front as well.

A Spira Care doctor using a stethoscope on a patient.

In Spira Care’s first year, we’ve seen substantial decreases in acute admissions and emergency room visits. We’ve seen an increase in primary care visits and a corresponding decrease in specialty care visits. In just one year, Spira Care has been able to deliver total cost of care savings. Although it’s preliminary, that’s real cost savings for clients and members.

“Our primary care visits are up, but we’ll happily make that tradeoff because it’s all about getting the right care delivered at the right time and the right place,” said Dave Olson, Blue KC Vice President of Business Development. “By investing in primary care, we’re able to give the member a better experience and reduce the total cost of care.”

A Spira Care consultant walking and talking with a young patient.

A New Approach to Primary Care

One of the benefits of starting the Spira Care story from a blank page was that it enabled us to completely re-envision what the healthcare experience could look like. For starters, we combined primary care with health insurance to simplify the member experience, making it more personal and affordable.

We also integrated behavioral health consultations into our primary care offering. By bringing medical and behavioral health services together under one roof, chronic conditions like diabetes, asthma, obesity and cardiovascular disease can be managed more holistically to achieve better health outcomes and improve quality of life.

“We recognize that many chronic diseases have coexistent behavioral health components to them. By focusing on both components, we can make a real difference in people’s lives,” said Dr. Greg Sweat, Senior Vice President and Chief Medical Officer.

A smiling patient talking with a Spira Care consultant.
Sara Nelson-Johns, LSCSW, MSW, Behavioral Health Consultant, Spira Care Shawnee

The Care Guide Difference

We know the healthcare landscape can be confusing. So, we asked ourselves what it would look like if members had someone in their corner, ready to do things like explain benefits, answer questions, help make appointments and find in-network specialists. With Spira Care, we’ve empowered people to do just these things. We call them Care Guides, and we think of them as a member’s healthcare partner.

Since Spira Care is a unique combination of both care and coverage under one roof, we have Care Guides that come from varied backgrounds. Some are registered nurses who can help members understand what type of visit is appropriate for their needs. Some have extensive backgrounds in health insurance and can provide expert help when explaining benefits and plan details. All of our Care Guides share a passion and enthusiasm for going above and beyond to help each and every member. It’s one of the many things that makes Spira Care unlike any other healthcare model.

I’ve been doing HR for 25 years and I’ve never had employees come back and brag about our health plan.”

Amy Willyard, HR Director, Mortgage Lenders of America

The Story Continues

The momentum of the first year has positioned Spira Care to grow exponentially in the future. As Dr. Sweat said, “We will continue to evolve Spira Care to meet the needs of our members.”

In the second half of 2018, Spira Care expanded its footprint by building three more Care Centers. The Crossroads, Lee’s Summit and Liberty locations, which opened on January 2, 2019, represent the next chapter for Spira Care and allow us to tell this success story to members throughout the greater Kansas City area.

Customer Experience

Now, Customer Experience isn’t just a department...it’s a culture

In 2018, Blue KC made changes to implement a more customer-centric corporate culture by forming a dedicated Customer Experience team, tasked with making customer loyalty the job of every department.

The Blue KC Customer Experience (CX) team has led the way in evolving the organization’s mindset to an “outside-in” approach—where the customer relationship drives goal-setting and decision-making.

CX is more than just a theory—it’s a proven business strategy. Companies that prioritize their customers’ experiences over internal objectives, like cutting costs or creating efficiencies, have consistently higher loyalty than companies that prioritize internal goals.

"We set our goals around what will create and maintain loyalty among our customers instead of trying to get customers to engage with Blue KC in a way that supports our corporate goals," said Gratia Carver, Department Vice President of Customer Experience.

This dramatic shift in priorities requires buy-in at every level. Carver emphasized, “We’ve been very fortunate to enjoy tremendous executive support as we’ve made this transition. We could not have achieved this kind of success without total commitment from our executive team.”

What is customer experience?

Customer Experience (CX) is the perception and feelings our customers have about their relationships, connections and touchpoints with Blue KC. To track and analyze these perceptions, our CX team developed the CX Measurement Portfolio, a customer survey that assesses the ease, effectiveness, trust and loyalty our customers feel in their interactions with Blue KC.

Two Blue KC Customer Experience team members driving in a golf cart and smiling.

CX makes it easy

The CX team introduced Blue KC employees to an expanded definition of customer experience with unexpected “acts of easy,” small gestures that went a long way toward making difficult situations better. From offering golf cart rides to employees who had a long walk to their car to passing out umbrellas and ice scrapers during inclement weather, the CX team looks for ways to surprise and delight employees.

Building CX into our company goals

Everyone at Blue KC impacts members in some way during the course of their journey. To successfully achieve the “outside-in” approach, improving customer experience is a key element in our 2019 strategy and part of our overall corporate incentive structure.

Diabetes Prevention

In the fight against diabetes, we’ve got your back

Healthcare used to be about treating the sick. Now it’s about helping people stay well. When providers, payers and patients focus on prevention, costs decrease while vitality and wellness among the population increases.”

Qiana Thomason, Vice President of Community Health

For many employers, Type 2 diabetes continues to be the top condition impacting benefit plan costs. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), approximately one in three Americans have prediabetes. Most of those don’t know they are on the verge of developing the disease, and without intervention, about half of them will be diagnosed with diabetes in the next five to 10 years.

To combat these staggering numbers, Blue KC launched a Diabetes Prevention Program, a new preventive care benefit available to eligible Blue KC members at no cost. By offering lifestyle changes that can lead to weight loss and healthier habits, this new program helps participants reduce their risk of developing Type 2 diabetes and focus on their general well-being.

I’m no longer at risk for Type 2 diabetes. The tips and tools this program provided have trained me to live differently, and I know the weight won’t come back this time.”

Deanna M., Raytown School District employee, Diabetes Prevention Program participant through Betr Health

“The program helps mitigate other health risk factors, like obesity and heart disease, in addition to diabetes,” said Noelle King-Whitlow, Department Vice President, Healthcare Transformation. “Our goal is to effectively pursue better overall health for our members while lowering healthcare costs for the community.”

The program starts with eligible members connecting with a partner who will guide them as they establish, pursue and track their health goals. What follows is typically a 16-week series of lessons and access to a lifestyle coach and support group, as well as helpful tools like wireless scales and fitness trackers.


People in the U.S. have diabetes


People in the U.S. have prediabetes


Annual costs for healthcare system and employers

Diabetes by the Numbers

According to the CDC, more than 30 million people in the United States have diabetes; a staggering 84 million more have prediabetes, putting them at risk for Type 2 diabetes. Diabetes alone is a leading cause of death in the U.S., without even tacking on the other serious health conditions associated with it—heart disease, kidney failure and blindness. The American Diabetes Association estimates that diabetes costs the healthcare system and employers roughly $345 billion per year in medical costs and lost productivity.

Remote Monitoring

Connecting our members to better health

Blue KC is offering a new remote monitoring program to keep at-risk members connected with healthcare professionals to detect potential health crises before they happen.

Launched in September, the program is now being utilized by nearly 300 participants. It’s designed to give members with congestive heart failure and/or diabetes the ability to monitor and share their daily vital signs—blood pressure, heart rate, weight, pulse, oxygen and blood sugar—with a registered nurse from the comfort of their own home. With access to their patients’ daily health data, providers can help prevent emergency room visits and hospitalizations.

“For members with certain conditions, small changes in health can signal big, even life-threatening issues. On top of that, these issues can deteriorate quickly, sometimes becoming critical in a matter of hours. With remote monitoring, we can see what’s going on with our members and help them get care before it gets to a critical stage,” said Raelene Knolla, D.O., Department Vice President and Senior Medical Director.

The program is not meant to replace, but rather enhance, the relationship between primary care providers and members.”

Raelene Knolla, D.O., Department Vice President and Senior Medical Director

Participating members receive a home wellness kit with all the equipment they need—an internet connection isn’t even required. Participants also receive an app that provides personalized educational content, video conferencing and interactive health sessions with a clinician. Best of all, the program is offered at no cost to employers or members.

One member who recently joined the program quickly recognized the value. The education our nurses provided and the results of his remote monitoring helped him identify symptoms he had previously ignored. As a result, he immediately went to see his physician and circumvented what could have been a lengthy and expensive hospital stay.

Healthy KC

We’re going to need a new goal

It was back in 2015 that Healthy KC—a regional health and wellness program organized by Blue KC and the Greater Kansas City Chamber of Commerce—launched the Tobacco21 initiative. The campaign’s sponsors set forth with a pretty clear goal for the first three years: convince five cities in the area to raise their legal smoking age from 18 to 21.

The rationale behind these efforts was also clear. Nearly 95 percent of smokers start before the age of 21. Smoking rates in Kansas and Missouri continue to remain above the national average. And the Chamber’s research overwhelmingly shows that tobacco-related health problems are a top concern for area employers. If successful, Tobacco21 would have the potential to make a significant and lasting impact on this serious regional health issue.

Success, as it turned out, would not be a problem. By January 2018, more than 25 local municipalities had passed ordinances raising their smoking age.

So, what does a public health initiative do when it surpasses its start-up goal by a whopping 400 percent? It sets a new goal, of course.

We didn’t have any idea that Tobacco21 would resonate with so many communities so quickly. One of our greatest challenges was keeping up with all the cities that wanted to work with us on the issue.”

Scott Hall, Greater Kansas City Chamber of Commerce, Senior Vice President, Civic and Community Initiatives

The early data on the impact of Tobacco21’s efforts is encouraging, but teenage smoking has shifted from traditional tobacco products to alternatives like vaping devices and e-cigarettes. The path forward is again clear. Today, Tobacco21 is focusing more and more on curbing the use of these electronic nicotine delivery systems. But changing the public perception that vaping is risk free will take time.

“Public health initiatives of this magnitude can’t be accomplished by a single organization,” said Dr. Bridget McCandless, public health policy expert and Chief Executive Officer, Health Forward. “It takes the efforts of the Chamber, public health stakeholders and community voices working together to bring about this kind of lasting change.”

Kansas City Medical Society

Logistics leads to better access for the uninsured

Blue KC has long provided financial support to Safety Net Clinics, which offer primary care to the uninsured. While these clinics provide critical services, most don’t offer specialty care. Metro Care and WyJo Care—charitable care programs operating under the Kansas City Medical Society (KCMS)—maintain a network of more than 700 specialty care providers who donate their time to help the nearly 175,000 people in the Kansas City metro living without health insurance.

We asked ourselves how we could help these critical programs reach more people, and the answer came down to logistics.

By offering access to our claims-processing systems, we’re able to help volunteer physicians more easily log the time and specialty care services they’re providing. The goal is to lessen the administrative burden these doctors face when donating their time, freeing them up to continue helping people get the healthcare they need.

“A recent patient was a working mother of two with a full-time job at a charitable organization and a part-time job in a restaurant. She was in need of a gynecological surgery and WyJo Care was able to provide it via a volunteer surgeon,” said Angela Bedell, Executive Director for KCMS. “She would have died without the surgery. Her only other option would have been to wait until her situation got bad enough that an emergency room would treat her. Our solution was less expensive and allowed her to get back to work.”

With Blue KC’s technology working behind the scenes, Metro Care and WyJo Care are now annually sending 1,400 claims through the system—translating to more than $6.5 million in care donated each year. People who need this care are getting it.

“Our lean staff and budget are able to help exponentially more people with the backing of Blue KC,” Bedell said. “Without this assistance, we wouldn’t be able to provide care to the 1,200 patients we help each year.”

Blue KC Client Focus

Blue KC Client Focus

“Our employees value having a broad local network where they can see the doctors they want to see.”

Annette Lanham Senior Human Resources Consultant for the City of St. Joseph, MO

“We’ve been partners with Blue KC for decades and know that we can depend on them to help us with any of our health insurance needs.”

Troy Schulte City Manager for the City of Kansas City, MO

“It is important to partner, whenever possible, with other organizations in the area. Blue KC is well respected and the City’s partnership with them is a natural fit.”

Mike Russo Human Resources Manager, Benefits & Retirement Plans

“According to employee surveys, the vast majority of our employees identify their Blue KC medical plan as the most valued benefit offered by the county.”

Cameron Ahrens Benefits & Wellness Manager for Johnson County Government

KC Health Collaborative

Leadership sparks community collaboration

Back in 2015, Blue KC invited area healthcare leaders to come together and discuss ways they could improve healthcare delivery in Kansas City. Four years later, what began as a dialogue among a small group of forward-thinking individuals has now evolved to become the KC Health Collaborative (KCHC)—a growing group of committed healthcare stakeholders from across the community.

The goal now? Take the conversation Blue KC helped start and convert it into community-based action.

KCHC will provide a platform for community problem solving and data-driven, proactive programs. As healthcare leaders, we applaud Blue KC for catalyzing this collaborative conversation.”

Bruce Bagley, M.D., Facilitator for the KC Health Collaborative

In the summer of 2018, the KCHC convened a series of meetings with working groups of more than 25 leaders from area health insurers, healthcare providers, employers, foundations, academic institutions and public health departments.

“Healthcare is complex. As individual organizations, we are limited in how much we can impact the overall system. But if we work together to identify those ways in which collaboration helps move the needle for all in our community—we all win,” said Karen Johnson, Blue KC’s Vice President of Healthcare Insights and Partnerships.

The KCHC now sets its sights on creating a three-year strategic plan. They remain focused on bringing healthcare stakeholders together to confront the challenges we all face, and in doing so hope to create an environment where participants will feel comfortable sharing data that can provide insight and drive cohesive action plans.

Well Stocked

We’ve made a commitment to help cure hunger in our community

In 2018, Blue KC decided it could make a difference in the lives of people in Kansas City by focusing on a vital need—food access. Blue KC launched the Well Stocked program, a partnership with local community organizations who share the same vision and goal of improving access to nutritious food for the people who need it.

Individuals smiling in meeting.

“Caring for our community is at the heart of what we do,” said Danette Wilson, President and CEO. “We’re committed to improving the overall health of our community, and that starts with ensuring that everyone in Kansas City knows where they’ll get their next nutritious meal.”

In Well Stocked’s inaugural year, Blue KC teamed up with local organizations to make an immediate impact on the community. Some highlights of the first year of Well Stocked include:

We’ve always valued our partnership with Blue KC, and look forward to strengthening our efforts together through Well Stocked.”

Valerie Nicholson-Watson, President and CEO of Harvesters
  • Partnership with Harvesters Community Food Network — As part of the Food 4 Thought Series, we hosted three discussions on the intersection of health and hunger and are working together to create a school pantry program located on school premises for students and families in need.
  • After the Harvest — Blue KC employees volunteered and gleaned 1,200 pounds of food for this local organization that keeps nutritious fruits and vegetables from going to waste by donating them to agencies that serve hungry people.
  • Johnson County Community College (JCCC) MEALShare program — Blue KC invested in this program which provides students with a daily credit in the form of a scannable card for food anywhere on campus.
  • A Turning Point — Blue KC supported their mission to “transform lives by empowering people to self-sufficiency” with a corporate gift and almost $4,000 in basic cooking and kitchen supplies donated for those that needed it.
  • Cultivate KC — Through the Double Up Food Bucks program, users receive double the amount of fruits and vegetables they can buy. For every $1 they spend on fruits and veggies at participating farmer’s markets or grocery stores, they receive an additional $1 to spend on those healthier options.

With Blue KC’s generous support and partnership, we are proud of the strides we’ve made to address food insecurity on campus.”

Rob M. Wyrick, JCCC Foundation

"Eating healthy food, having access to healthier food and having access to food, in general, is a huge component of your overall health,” said Macaela Stephenson, Manager of Community Relations at Blue KC.

Blue KC saw our community was in need and we had the ability and the drive to help, and that’s what we did—not just in monetary donations, but also with thousands of volunteer hours and personal contributions by Blue KC employees.

Cristo Rey High School

Blue KC helps students prepare for the future

I’ve really enjoyed my time at Blue KC! I’ve gained new administrative skills and experience working in a professional environment.”

Ikeiea Coppage, Cristo Rey Student

When Blue KC employees accepted an invitation to attend an open house at Cristo Rey High School, they knew they would be learning about a next-level program specializing in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM). What they didn’t expect was to fall in love with the school and their students. This open house led to a Corporate Work Study Program between Cristo Rey and Blue KC where their students work on-site, learning from Blue KC employees while performing administrative and clerical work.

The Cristo Rey Corporate Work Study Program not only provides the students with real work experience, it also helps by paying for half their tuition and can lead to a full-time summer job.

Blue KC employees also see the benefits of this partnership. “I’m sure everyone thinks they have the best kids, but we [Blue KC] have the best kids. Every single one of them has figured out what they need to do, and they do it. And they’re good at it,” said Stephanie Byram, Application Specialist, Senior, and student mentor.

Blue KC was so impressed with the school and the students, that in 2018 we donated 75 Microsoft Surface Pros to the Cristo Rey robotics team, part of the school’s STEM program.

Blue KC has been a part of the community for more than 80 years, and programs like this are one way we can say thank you to the community we serve.

Community Commitment

Blue KC Gives Back: Giving Campaigns Year in Review

Every year, Blue KC showcases their commitment to the community. Not by social media posts or press releases but by the hours and hours of time Blue KC employees volunteer every year, and 2018 was no exception. In 2018, Blue KC employees volunteered over 10,000 hours, spreading them out over 25 Kansas City organizations. This joyful commitment to community is what makes our employees, and Kansas City, so special.

Blue KC Charitable Contributions

Blue KC is committed to improving the health and wellness of the individuals and families living and working in the communities we serve. One way we fulfill this mission is through charitable contributions to a range of worthwhile causes and not-for-profit organizations.

Blue KC Charitable Contributions Pie Chart


Awarded to health services and community wellness programs like Ronald McDonald House Charities of Kansas City and Girls on the Run


Awarded to education and community enrichment programs like Metropolitan Organization to Counter Sexual Assault (MOCSA) and Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Kansas City


Awarded to arts, culture and civic engagement programs like ArtsKC and Nonprofit Connect

Donations $105,000

The Caring Program

In February, Blue KC employees donated to The Caring Program for Children who provide children and their families with medical equipment and items that greatly improve their quality of life.

Donations $15,000


In July, employees contributed canned goods, volunteered at Harvesters and donated online.

2,920 total pounds of food donated, and 290 hours volunteered.

Donations $197,000

United Way

Dodgeball Tournament
Back by popular demand was the Blue KC Dodgeball Tournament. Fourteen teams competed in 2018. Employees also raised money for local nonprofits supported by United Way.

Donations worth $5,000

Holiday Giving Campaign

A Turning Point
As part of our Well Stocked initiative, Blue KC chose A Turning Point for our Holiday Giving Campaign. This organization focuses on transforming the lives of those in need by empowering people to self-sufficiency. We held a drive for basic cooking utensils, cooking items and spices.

Total donations of items and supplies to more than 200 families worth $5,000.

Hours 10,000

Blue KC Cares

Throughout 2018, employees volunteered with over 25 Kansas City organizations, held 10 team building volunteer outings, and celebrated National Volunteer Appreciation Week resulting in 10,000 hours of volunteering.

Lives Saved 600

Blood Drives

February 8 = 40 donations
April 19 = 41 donations
July 19 = 50 donations
November 27 = 69 donations
Total 2018 Donations = 200