Recognizing ELITE Employees

Posted on Jan 1, 2019 by Gary Crueger


The reputation of a company is only as good as the skill of the people who work there—which is why at Cascade, we strive to hire the very best environmental professionals in the industry. But as our Talent Acquisition Manager Jessica Alexander points out in her blog post, Understanding Employee Motivations in a Candidate Driven Market, people need more than a paycheck to be satisfied in their jobs.

In 2015, Cascade leadership realized we needed to improve how we recognize our dedicated team members. The ELITE program was founded to showcase talent throughout the organization, and to implement a “Hall of Fame” for our very best employees. Those who are recognized each year demonstrate not only exceptional work performance, but also a commitment to core company values such as safety, skill, leadership, performance and accountability.

The Cascade ELITE inductees serve as more than just a model for their co-workers. They also serve a two-year term on the Cascade ELITE Commission, which is charged with providing recommendations regarding operations, safety procedures, company strategy, and other related issues. We recognize that these employees are top performers and, as such, may have valuable insight into ways we can improve on site, operationally, or at a corporate level.

What makes the Cascade ELITE program special is that nominations for the annual award are made by managers and supervisors—as well as any other employee who believes their coworker meets the criteria. This means that individuals who might have fallen below our radar have an opportunity to be highlighted and recognized.

Once initial nominations are made, the Election Committee reviews each one and scores them. Employees with the highest scores are inducted into that year’s ELITE Hall of Fame. Since 2015, we have had two inductions:

2015 Inductions: Todd Schmalfeldt, Josh Sigler, Jon Weeks, David Wilcox

2016 Inductions: James Goble, Mike Bond, Jimmy Hall Jr.

In 2017, due to company growth, the program expanded to include all Cascade drillers, operators, technicians, and specialists. Nominations for the 2018 inductions commenced in September of 2018. The total nominations reached 153, with 102 people nominating. The Cascade ELITE Election Committee is now reviewing nominations to determine our new 2018 inductees, who will be announced at the end of January 2019.

If you’re interested in learning more about careers and what we offer at Cascade, reach out to our Talent Acquisition Manager, Jessica Alexander, at

If you’d like to learn more about the Cascade ELITE program, reach out to our Chief Administrative Officer, Gary Crueger, at


Gary Crueger, Cheif Administration Officer at Cascade Environmental

Gary Crueger


Gary Crueger joined Cascade as Vice President of Safety & Administration in 2012, was appointed Senior Vice President of Drilling Operations (East) in 2015 and returned as SVP of Operations Support in 2017. In 2018, Gary was appointed Chief Administrative Officer.  He is a dedicated leader driving performance, quality programming and mentoring employees at all levels. His diverse background includes high level positions in operations, risk management, regulatory compliance and health & safety programs over decades in the environmental services industry.  Gary’s focus on program and policy development, implementation and statistical analysis provides a solid foundation for long term business success.  Gary attended the University of Washington.

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