"We're excited about the new opportunities this agreement brings to both the LoanLink Center and CUSN," said Daniel Murray, a CUNA Mutual vice president. "CUSN will bring the value of the LoanLink Center to its constituent credit unions and the LoanLink Center will receive marketing support for in-profile customers."
The new agreement allows marketing for LoanLink to reach the 95 current customers and all potential customers of CUSN in the states of Colorado, Idaho, Iowa, Nebraska, New Mexico and Wyoming. It will also allow CUSN to generate leads and interest for LoanLink's lending solutions and member services.
"CUSN is pleased to partner with TLC to offer this important tool to our credit unions," said Doug Burke, CUSN president/CEO.
N.C. League Hires Lobbyist
The North Carolina Credit Union League has named Lauren Whaley to be its first director of legislative and regulatory affairs.
She will provide advice and assistance in managing state legislative affairs and monitor regulatory issues that impact North Carolina credit unions. She also plans to conduct training sessions for member credit unions on relevant regulatory matters.
Previously, she worked at Jennings public relations, branding and advertising agency in Chapel Hill, where she served as a public relations and advertising account leader for nearly two years. Before that she was communications coordinator at Truliant Federal Credit Union in Winston-Salem.
Mo. Regulator Retiring
Sandra Branson, director of the Missouri Division of Credit Unions since 2005 and previously from 1987-1993, is retiring this month.
The state's top CU regulator has long encouraged open dialogue between her office and CUs in the state, said Rosie Holub, president/CEO of the Missouri Credit Union Association.
"She will be missed," said Holub in praising her stewardship.
Branson previously served as president/CEO of Missouri State CU of Jefferson City.
SharePoint Credit Union
Names Kopischke CEO
SharePoint Credit Union, Hopkins, Minn., has appointed Phillip Kopischke president/CEO.
Kopischke replaces Patrick M. Haggerty, who is retiring after over 27 years of service. With more that 23 years of financial services industry experience, Kopischke most recently served as market president for Peoples Bank of Commerce in St. Paul, Minn.
Prior to Peoples Bank, Kopischke spent 22 years with Wells Fargo in various senior management positions. At Wells Fargo, Kopischke was responsible for managing retail branch locations in the southwest metro area and the business banking teams in the south metro.
"We are extremely fortunate to have Phil join SharePoint Credit Union," said Joe Budnick, SharePoint CU board chairman. "His extensive experience in the financial services industry will be a benefit in serving and growing our membership throughout Hennepin County and our partner companies."
Kopischke earned his undergraduate from Mankato State University in Mankato, Minn. and received his CPA certificate in 1987.
PSECU Joins in
Heartland Law Suit
Pennsylvania State Employees Credit Union has become one of the latest organizations to file a legal complaint against Princeton, N.J.-based Heartland Payment Systems stemming from its 2008 card security breach.
The $3.2 billion credit union filed the class action suit against the processing firm in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas on May 1. Heartland revealed it had experienced a card security breach in January 2009, though it came out later that the breach had gone on for months during 2008.
According to the credit union's filing, the complaint resembles those already filed by other card issuers and seeks damages for breach of contract and negligence among other charges. The court has not yet set dates for arguments in the case. Since this suit is one of several, the credit union anticipates that it might be consolidated with other cases.
Shropshire Named CEO
There is a new leader at Communication Federal Credit Union.
Former Oklahoma Tax Commission CEO Larry Shropshire has been named president/CEO of the $580 million credit union.
"We are pleased to have someone with Larry's experience, financial knowledge and proven leadership skills," said Mirl Whisman, Communication FCU board chairman.
A CPA with a bachelor's degree from East Central University, Shropshire has served for over 30 years at the Oklahoma Tax Commission, working his way up from comptroller to CEO.
Active in the community, he is a member of Oklahoma Society of CPAs, board member of Oklahoma Paint Horse Association, past president of the Oklahoma Children's Cancer Association and past appointee on the Oklahoma Certified Public Managers Advisory Board.
Westerra, Jeffco Schools
Merger Gains Approval
Westerra Credit Union of Denver is expanding its Colorado footprint this summer, expecting to hit $1 billion in assets upon completing a merger with the $163 million Jeffco Schools CU of Lakewood.
The merger, approved by Jeffco members May 7, becomes final on July 1, bringing Westerra's membership to 88,000.
"This was a great vote of confidence from Jeffco members and a great day for the entire Westerra Credit Union family," said C. Alan Peppers, president/CEO of Westerra. Jeffco with 20,000 members represents the largest school district in the state.
Following the merger, Westerra will have 11 branches across the Denver metro area as well as 150 Colorado service-center locations with member access to 800 ATMs.
Peppers has served as acting Jeffco CEO since last October after the departure of its CEO under an interim management agreement with Jeffco. The planned merger was formally announced in January but had been under discussion last year following the retirement of long-time CEO Janet Meyers.
Loan Promotion Brings in
$12M for American 1 FCU
Battling a 13% jobless rate in the county that it serves, the Jackson, Mich. based-American 1 Federal Credit Union brought in $12 million in new loans during April through a loan rebate promotion.
The rebate offered members who financed a closed-end, secured loan half of their interest back through 2009. The credit union will deposit half of the interest members pay from April to December 2009 into their accounts in January 2010.
The promotion was extended through the first week in May, which led to an additional $1.5 million in loan dollars.
"Our loan growth shows not everything is doom and gloom in the area," said Kristi Latoszewski, vice president of marketing and communications. "Our members, and the community, still need loan dollars-and we're here for them."
A used vehicle sale the credit union held April 24 and 25 contributed $1 million to the total loan amount. The credit union invited six local dealerships to showcase 250 used vehicles. Almost 100 cars were financed during the event.
"That's $1 million we kept in the Jackson community," Latoszewski said.
American 1 advertised the promotion in local papers, put up branch posters and did online advertising. The credit union also held staff competitions that offered dress-down days, paid days off and cash bonuses. Branch hours were also extended to increase the number of loan closings.
Young Members Raise
The Bar on Savings
Young credit union members are recognizing the value of saving.
This year's National Youth Saving Challenge helped raise the bar on savings by more than doubling last year's record.
Young credit union members deposited a record-breaking $26.5 million into their saving accounts and CDs.
"By more than doubling the amount they saved last year, our young members have told us loud and clear that they believe in the future," said Dan Mica, CUNA president/CEO. "Their willingness to set money aside for their goals during a severe recession should inspire the rest of us to redouble our efforts to advance the credit union principles of thrift and the productive use of credit. This phenomenal vote of youthful optimism could not have come at a better time."
Participating credit unions used the sixth annual challenge to motivate children, teenagers and their parents to start and maintain a saving habit by opening accounts and making deposits. This year, 397 credit unions reported receiving deposits from 139,669 young members, including 10,006 who opened new accounts.
This year's results average out to $190 deposited per child. Last year's nearly $11.8 million savings total averaged $156 deposited per child, up from $87 per child in the 2004 inaugural year.
For the first time, credit unions had the option of hosting the challenge throughout April, which was National Financial Literacy Month.