Steve Kreidler—Champion of Character for “endurance.”

The Edmond City Council and the Character Council of Edmond recently recognized Edmond’s Steve Kreidler as a Champion of Character for his character trait of endurance.

The character trait of endurance can be defined as “the inward strength to withstand stress and do our best,” which is what prompted University of Central Oklahoma’s Special Assistant to the Vice President, Bob Ault, to nominate Kreidler as a Champion of Character.

As an Executive Vice President, Steve Kreidler has the responsibility to oversee an annual budget of over $130 million, service 17,000 students, and 1,400 employees, at one of the largest employers in the Edmond community, the University of Central Oklahoma (UCO).

Kreidler’s endurance during the last few months has been nothing short of heroism, says Bob Ault. In Ault’s nomination of Kreidler, he went on to say, “He has met the grueling demands of a highly stressful position and has gone above and beyond to serve our wonderful community and state, as selfless as any individual I’ve ever been around.”

“During the last months,” wrote Ault,

  • Steve has been engaging with the Legislature in its close to bring the Medical Examiner’s Office to Edmond. This will provide numerous high paying jobs to the community.
  • He has dealt with millions of dollars in budget cuts from the state without reducing the quality of education our students receive or introducing employee furloughs like most other state institutions.
  • He developed relationships that now are bringing the World Sitting Volleyball Championship to Edmond with over 40 teams from around the globe attending.
  • He helped foster a relationship to further develop the Oklahoma River with announcing the building of a new Boat House and Jazz Lab.
  • Moreover he has provided leadership to the Oklahoma Academy for State Goals and the OU Medical Center.

“He has done all these things,” concludes Ault, “with a sense of duty and a seemingly endless amount of endurance to do what is right. Most individuals would buckle under the stress of such a call to serve, but Steve has endured with grace and pride.

“Steve is an inspiration to the UCO employees. He daily interacts with a large cross section of employees and they always seem to feel more at ease and more energized afterward … his efforts and actions have provided for Steve to be positive role model to our next generation of leaders.”

Georgia Fiering, Executive Assistant at UCO, has worked for Kreidler for two years, and had this to say. “One definition of endurance is ‘lasting quality.’ Steve Kreidler’s lasting quality is ‘to be Steve.’ He is enduringly patient, tolerant, full of grace and speaks and acts from the heart. The strength Steve has is to be fair and kind in all ways, all day to all people…talk about endurance.”

Myron Pope, UCO’s Vice President of Enrollment Management, has known Kreidler since 2004, and during the years has noted that, “Kreidler’s character has been consistent in always approaching things from a positive perspective. His positive attitude has been beneficial to all of us here at UCO as we have endured the most stressful times during budgets cuts from the state.

“His level of enthusiasm and focus on opportunities instead of challenges has been amazing, and it has contributed to blunting the force of some less positive outlooks. He is the eternal optimist and a great leader, who is constantly looking for those opportunities to make not only himself better, but also others.”

Honoring Kreidler for his endurance is “timely and apropos,” added Holly Kreidler, Steve’s wife of just 8 months. “He tirelessly strives to do his best for the benefit of others – UCO students, his colleagues, his friends, his family and his community.

“Because he is an advocate for so many and because of the roles he chooses, he takes on a great deal of responsibility which naturally places him in tough, and at times, incredibly stressful situations. Steve is unique in that he maintains an extraordinary inner reserve of hope, strength and drive. However weighty the professional or personal challenges may be, he always emerges positively, wanting to do more and be more for all of us. He leads by example, and teaches me and those around him lessons like this every day.”

Jim Hulsey, president of the Character Council of Edmond, agrees that “Edmond and its citizens are better off because of Steve Kreidler’s endurance. He unquestionably deserves this recognition.”

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