HIGHTSTOWN, N.J. -- Bolstering management ranks while a new president/CEO is being recruited, the New Jersey Credit Union League announced last week it has hired Tom Griffiths, a retired president/CEO of the Iowa Credit Union League, to serve as an executive management consultant.
The league said Griffiths, who started June 18, will assist the league "in transition, guidance and stable leadership" until a permanent CEO replacement is made to succeed Robert S. Walls, dismissed last April in a dispute over league policies.
The 62-year-old Griffiths, who resides in Kona, Hawaii and served the Iowa league 21 years in the top staffing post, said he was brought into New Jersey operations at the behest of the American Association of Credit Union Leagues, a CUNA affiliate.
"AACUL asked if I could come in here to provide a little temporary help and that's what I'm doing but I can assure you I am not in the business of consulting," said Griffiths.
He noted that over the years AACUL has provided HR help to state leagues in various capacities including service processing, audit and management with New Jersey as another example where experienced field personnel are hired.
Problems at the New Jersey league have been acute for months over how big and small CUs are being served, vendor links as well as policy differences over advocacy/lobbying strategies climaxing in the league board decision to fire Walls April 23.
Griffiths said the league board is currently in the process of evaluating CEO search firms and could make an announcement as early as this week. Sources say HR Value Group will likely lead the search. In April the league board informally named Chris Zahne, finance director, to handle CEO duties.
Griffiths, who retired a year ago from the Iowa league, is a former chairman of the American Association of Credit Union Executives, which later became AACUL. He is also a past director of U.S. Central Credit Union and Filene Research Institute. He served the industry for 34 years, all of it with the Iowa CU League.