When people think of accounting, they probably think of numbers. While that is true, accounting is also detective work. And like any great detective in literature, TAC Staff Accountant Michelle Fruge takes this task very seriously while also keeping a sense of humor. She is one-part book smart, one-part laughter and one-part problem solver, which equal a priceless part of her accounting team.
Fruge came to TAC after more than 10 years with Travis Medical Sales (TMS) as its accounts receivable manager. She was encouraged to apply for the position at TAC by staff accountants Miguel Lopez and Courtney Gibb, whom she worked with at TMS before they joined TAC. "Courtney texted me about the open position," Fruge said. "I had heard how awesome it was to work at TAC. So I applied, and I got the job in February 2018." Fruge would later pay it forward by encouraging Communications Operation Manager Erica Wilson to apply. Wilson joined TAC in July 2018. Fruge even suggested that her daughter, Membership and Strategic Services Program Coordinator Reagan Fruge, join the TAC family.
Fruge has no typical days; like many other TAC staff members, she deals with what each day brings. "I do the Risk Management Pool payables, fixed assets, all-staff budget and reconciling credit cards. It's usually a little bit of each of those," she said. Basically, she spends most days crunching numbers. And that’s just how she likes it. "I love accounting. I love the detective work of finding the problems," she said.
Ten people make up the Finance Services Department at TAC, all working together like a top-notch investigative team — tracking down payments, making sure the numbers add up and keeping an eye out for what is around the next financial corner. It would not all come together without teamwork. "Michelle brings to her work a high level of skill, care and enthusiasm," said Staff Accountant Sandy Wilson. "She is an invaluable member of our team and well-liked by all. I always look forward to working with Michelle on projects as she has a great attitude, is fun to work with, and she knows how to make things happen."
Fruge's mood is infectious. She brings lightness to her work. "She has a joyful spirit with a willingness to learn continually," said Director of Finance Services Ganae Hempe. "She is caring, smart and has taken on each challenge with a smile on her face."
Her upbeat demeanor is matched only by her commitment to the job and making sure she gets it right. "She is detail-oriented and brings organization to the work she undertakes," Hempe said. "She is committed to TAC and to serving our members with excellence. She is a delight to have on the Finance Services team!"
Fruge is skilled at getting questions answered and solving problems, all with a smile on her face and a sparkle in her eye. And that is why she is the Employee Spotlight for May/June 2020.