Even after just taking her name out of consideration for a position on the NCUA Board, Carla Decker said she would absolutely go through it all again.
March 28, 2012, NCUA Bans Credit Union Board Member for Decker Disclosure
In an interview with Credit Union Times, Decker said that the overall process, from the day the White House first approached her about the nomination to the day when she took her name out of the running, had been about a year.
She decided to withdraw the nomination, she said, because she had received advice that given this was an election year with a particularly partisan atmosphere, it was unlikely the nomination would move to a hearing soon.
“The controversial recess appointment of Richard Cordray to head the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau also made the process difficult, I was told,” she added.
Decker is the CEO of the 10,600 member, $46 million District Government Employees Federal Credit Union in Washington, D.C., a position she has continued to hold through the nomination process.
During the process the credit union's performance had been criticized, particularly after the CU's Dec. 10 exam report became public. The report criticized the CU for not having foreclosure procedures; inadequate reporting to the credit union’s board on information security; and willingness by management to assume an unacceptable level of interest rate risk.
The credit union’s overall CAMEL rating was a 3. Its other ratings were: 1 for capital, 3 for asset quality, 3 for management, 4 for earnings, and 2 for asset liability management.
Decker said that one of the most challenging aspects of the nomination process was not being to speak up to provide some context in which to understand the credit union's performance.
“As a presidential nominee, you are asked not to speak to the media,” Decker said, and that it made it difficult when questions about her credit union's performance were raised.
Decker still declined to comment on the December 2010 exam report, noting her credit union's policy of not speaking about confidential documents, even those which had been made public.
But she commented on her credit union's performance, noting that during that period the CU had already made strategic decisions to launch a couple of projects, in particular to build a new branch and to switch to a new data processing system, that it knew would be expensive in the short run but it believed would serve members in the longer run.
“These were strategic decisions to build the infrastructure that would serve our members into the future,” Decker said. “We knew they would be expensive, but that is why we had reserves.”