The CEO of an $80 million El Paso credit union and a director of the Texas Credit Union League appealed Friday for greater industry calm and thought before "deserting the corporate model" and switching to the Federal Reserve.
Writing in the "CEO Corner" of the Texas League's daily e-mail bulletin, Bob Peterson, president of One Source FCU and an Advisory Council member providing NCUA suggestions on dealing with the agency-conserved Southwest Bridge Corporate FCU of Dallas, warned that greater CU use of the Fed could pose "unfamiliar" risks.
"How can one compare the Fed's environment and services with others that have not yet been created or identified?" Peterson asked, referring to new corporate models slated for unveiling by yearend.
"As level-headed managers, we credit union leaders have to keep our wits about us in this trying time," he said. "Each of us can be preparing to make that final informed decision, but you just can't do that before you have the necessary information. We have an opportunity to create a lasting system that will have been designed by those we trust most-us."
Thus, he said, "it behooves us to approach our opportunity with patience and good old common managerial sense."
Peterson, a former CU board chairman and management consultant, said the current climate represents "a classic case of uninformed decision-making, usually a recipe for future difficulties and experience tells us that skipping one or more decision steps can be catastrophic. "
In the current environment, "at least one of those steps cannot yet be completed" and that is the alternative model, he said. "Without that step the remaining steps should not be attempted," he warned. "This is a strong argument for any credit union to engage in watchful waiting."
Like the other 140 CEOs and top managers on the SW Corp. Advisory Council, Peterson represents CUs from across the South and West. He told Credit Union Times he is currently awaiting a report containing recommendations for Southwest to be produced by a special 13-member Executive Committee.
That committee, chaired by Kerry Parker, president/CEO of A+ FCU of Austin, is operating under NCUA tutelage led by the interim CEO, Dianne Addington. Earlier this month Addington forecast a report containing business model recommendations would be presented to the membership in December.