For the first time, a member of a credit union seeking to convert from a credit union to mutual bank charter has launched a Facebook page seeking to convince fellow members to vote against the move.
Carlos Rodriguez, an entrepreneur and former credit union employee, is one of Technology Credit Union's 69,000 members as well as a member of other California credit unions. He has launched a Facebook page called Please Don't Go to convince the credit union and its members not to leave the charter.
The board of directors of Technology told members in October of last year that it was considering taking the $1.6 billion San Jose credit union away from the credit union charter.
Members received the first mailing of disclosures related to that decision in June and will receive two more. The final meeting and vote on the issue will take place sometime in mid-September.
“Tech CU, you say it's you not me,” Rodriguez wrote in the introduction to linked video he posted from Willie Nelson. “It's hard to hear that you think you'll be happier as a mutual savings BANK instead of a credit union. Was it something I said?”
Rodriguez said he has been a member of Technology Credit Union since April of this year and that he joined because he wanted to establish a tie with a credit union in the San Jose community where he is starting up a new firm.
He said he found out about the planned charter change when he went into the credit union to open a business account.
“I explained to the representative that I really wanted to bring my business account to a credit union and the representative was kind enough to say, 'Oh, well, you should know that we are moving to become a mutual bank,'” Rodriquez recounted, adding, “Needless to say I didn't open my account at Tech CU.”
Rodriguez acknowledged that he is a fan of credit unions and has been a member of credit unions since he attended college and opened his first account.
“I know it will sound corny,” Rodriquez said, “but I believe in credit unions because, when they do things correctly, they can be among the single most powerful weapons against poverty.”