Who are you?
My name is Sara Clausen. My husband, Troy, drives for UPS and is a die-hard Denver Broncos fan. We live in Nevada, Iowa, with our two children — Will, 12, and Olivia, 10.
What is your cooperative and job title?
I work for Key Cooperative as Director of Communications & Member Relations. I’ve been with Key for seven years, but have worked with membership-based organizations over my entire career.
Describe your role.
I have the opportunity to support our four core business divisions every day. I develop marketing pieces, digital promotions, and take part in their strategic plans. I interact regularly with our member-owners as well as board of directors by developing campaigns and engagement events for our cooperative.
When did you join CCA? Why?
I joined CCA the first year I came to Key. The previous director had a great experience with CCA so it was highly recommended I take part as well. I was personally seeking professional development and an organization to build my communication portfolio.
Did anything surprise you about CCA?
I really couldn’t believe there was an organization out there specifically for communicators…and all cooperatives! After attending Institute for the first time, I was also surprised at the wide variety of types of cooperatives in our country. Having grown up and worked in “the land of corn and soybeans” all my life, I was impressed that nearly every commodity is represented in CCA.
What’s been your favorite thing about CCA so far?
Experiencing Institute I’m sure is high on everyone’s list, but it’s the feeling of connectivity after you attend for the first time. I really feel like that I can reach out to any CCA member, at any given time and ask them for resources – a little family in a professional setting.
What’s your favorite thing about working with cooperatives?
I believe in the co-op model whole-heartedly and probably my favorite thing is that we’re all working FOR the people who own our cooperatives. It’s almost like being a coach on a team – recruiting the people who fit, training them how to operate at their top potential and cheering them on whether they win or lose.
What are your hobbies and interests?
At this point in my life, my hobbies & interests are focused around whatever my children are doing which means I attend a lot of soccer, softball & basketball games, dance recitals and 4H meetings! I spend a lot of time in my community – serving on the economic development council, serving my Rotary Club, working on city beautification projects and helping with church committees. I love reading, gardening and being active outside.
Do you have a “bucket list”? What are some of the things on that list?
I wouldn’t say I have things I “must” do in life but rather I try to see how much I can possibly fit in. (If you can’t tell from the previous question, I have a hard time sitting still.) One of the most wonderful things our family experienced was the opportunity to host an exchange student. Bucket list level, we’re going to Italy this summer to visit her!
Give us something about yourself that is surprising or that most people don’t know.
No one throw tomatoes at me, but for being a professional communicator, I absolutely hate social media!