Insights & Stories

Honoring Our Heroes: Eddie Quan

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May 6th, 2024

Military Appreciation Month: Eddie Quan Military Appreciation Month: Eddie Quan

In honor of Military Appreciation Month, we’re excited to share the remarkable stories of our veteran and military spouse employees whose contributions at home, at work, and on the frontline help us foster a culture of respect, understanding, and camaraderie.

Eddie Quan, Senior Vice President and Director – Institutional Services, who is a proud Army veteran. He is a graduate of West Point.  

 and deeply appreciates current service members, veterans, their spouses, and family members for their sacrifices made for our country. Eddie serves as a leader in The Blue Brigade at Bank of Hawaii, an Employee Resource Group dedicated to “serving those who serve.” The Blue Brigade has assisted military veterans and families through various forms of outreach ranging from homeless veterans to Blue Star Military Families and their economic challenges and food insecurity. As Co-Chair for The Blue Brigade, Eddie sat down with us to share his passions and thoughts about the contributions of veterans and their families, as well as the pressing, unique challenges they face.

Military Appreciation Month serves as a dedicated time for us to reflect on and celebrate the unwavering courage, commitment, and sacrifices of not only our service members and veterans but their spouses and family members. “Veterans, and I would even say military spouses, are tough, resilient and adaptive breeds of people,” shares Eddie. These are individuals who are learning new jobs and pivoting to new assignments every two to three years, leaving their comfort zones for exercises or deployments sometimes every six to 12 months, and doing so all while assimilating deeper into an ethos founded on dedication, teamwork, loyalty, discipline and sacrifice.

Mental health is a critical aspect of overall well-being, deserving of attention and care on par with physical health. For military personnel and veterans, who often face unique and intense challenges both during and after their service, the importance of mental health care cannot be overstated. The transition from active duty to civilian life, exposure to combat, and the physical and psychological scars of service can all contribute to mental health struggles, including heightened risks of depression, PTSD, and suicide. “I’ve lost more friends to suicide than fingers on my hand, to include my cousin who also served our country, and I have continued to deal with my own mental health journey, so I really empathize with anyone suffering.  I listened to a podcast a few days ago that left me with the epiphany that pain can be the largest catalyst for growth if channeled behind the proper cause, and I think the focus on mental health is that for me.  It’s not quite normalized, but the sheer fact that we are talking about it openly in this interview tells me that the light is shining brighter than it has ever been,” shares Eddie. Encouraging service members, veterans, and their family members to seek help and ensuring they receive the care they need are crucial steps in honoring their sacrifices and aiding their recovery. Fortunately, there are resources and organizations, such as U.S. Vets that provide comprehensive, integrated support for military veterans (and civilians) and their families facing homelessness through the provision of housing, counseling, and career development.

“I think being raised in a military centric family and a very community centric family- service was the value that wove all fabrics and cultures of life together. We thought that would be a great pillar to build upon for the Employee Resource Group (ERG) and really leaned into the idea of serving those who serve,” shares Eddie.

The Blue Brigade has also served military youth through financial literacy, targeting schools that accommodate military dependents. The group partners with military-centric non-profit organizations that allow for volunteer opportunities focused around giving back to the community and really connecting, contributing or serving our military service members, their family members, or more at-risk veterans in the community. The Blue Brigade deploys Bank of Hawaii’s financial experts to local schools with military connectivity, and it’s through programs like “Teach Children to Save” and “Budgeting” that help build a financial foundation for our military youth. The Blue Brigade partners with organizations such as the Armed Services YMCA which shares a common focus of supporting military members and their families with programs intended to close the gap in services that pose the greatest hardship for them

At Bank of Hawaii we are committed to diversity, including honoring those who have served our country. Mahalo Eddie for sharing your story and being one of the great people who make Bank of Hawaii a great place to work—and the kind of company people are proud of.

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