NCUA Chairman Norman D'Amours missed the mark in his remarks at the 2000 CUNA GAC. Chairman D'Amours criticized the level of league involvement and lack of unpaid volunteers in CUNA's national governance structure. He also criticized the movement for not keeping its purpose constant and he claimed that the movement is moving away from relying on volunteers to set national policies. I take exception to those statements. Yes, I am a professional who is paid to run the day to day activities of a $460 million dollar institution, but I also consider myself a volunteer when it comes to being a policy maker for credit unions nationally. As Chairman of the NASCUS Credit Union Council, I spend five weekends a year away from my family and friends to promote the dual chartering system and the advancement of the autonomy and expertise of state credit union regulatory agencies. I could be home hunting or enjoying my new grandchild, but instead my credit union's members expect me to sway national policy for their benefit. I do not receive compensation for my role on the NASCUS Board nor does NASCUS reimburse me for travel or expenses. In addition, I serve on the Governmental Affairs Committee of CUNA, again as a volunteer. My credit union's board of directors and I recognize the importance of opening services to all of our potential members, not just "Low Income Consumers" because no successful organization could survive on one class or income group. My credit union is built on its diversification which has come from opening our doors to anyone living or working within the communities of our field of membership. Our credit union is extremely healthy and most importantly, the members/consumers benefit. My board of directors takes exception to Mr. D'Amours' comment that "volunteers allow themselves to be virtually shut out of national policy making." After each one of my state or national meetings, my board receives a report. I lean on my board for guidance on controversial issues. My board takes unpaid time away from their jobs to be involved on the state and national scene. During HR 1151, several of my board members were with me in Washington D.C. protecting the interest of our credit union and community credit unions across the country. My chairman of the board and treasurer were instrumental in organizing a National Community Credit Union organization made up of CEO's and yes Mr. D'Amours, volunteers. Our industry and national trade group have changed and matured over the years since our volunteer forefathers first became involved. Our industry is increasingly more complex. We need full time professionals with the backing of volunteer boards to be able to offer our members and potential members the benefits of a consumer owned organization. Charles Grossklaus President/CEO Royal Credit Union
D'Amours doesn't get it
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