While credit unions have faced challenges in light of the recession, the African-American Credit Union Coalition said there’s still enough inspiration to motivate volunteers and professionals throughout the industry.
That was part of the message at the AACUC’s recent annual conference in Charleston, S.C. Among the speakers were Congressman Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) who applauded credit unions “for not contributing to the economic financial crisis.”
Waters said the corporate assessments have been devastating to some credit unions.
“Credit unions are the alternatives for people who will never get credit from other institutions and that credit unions need to continue to work to get people out of payday loans,” Waters said.
Also in attendance was NCUA Board Member Michael Fryzel who stressed that “credit unions are there to serve and improve the lives of those we serve.”
Fryzel encouraged credit unions to partner with local schools in their area and to interact more with families and to publicize good deeds.
Keynote speaker Tom Glatt, Sr., senior managing partner of Centellect Consulting, led the conference with a discussion on “Leading the Transition: Managing When the Economic Recovery Starts.”
Motivational speakers Milton Hunt, Tony Eubanks and Deanna Brown-Thomas provided attendees with the ammunition needed to inspire them to “reach higher heights” to their underserved members and communities, the AACUC said.
Among the topics discussed during the conference’s sessions were marketing and credit union branding, media relations, board and staff relations, responsibilities and governance, and assets and liability management.
College students Ashley Watts, Carlton Edwards and Sarah Diggs, who interned this summer at credit unions, received $2,000 each to further their education at historically black colleges and universities.
One of the highlights of the AACUC’s conference was when Shirley Grace Jenkins was honored with the Pete Crear Lifetime Achievement Award.
A founding member of the AACUC and board secretary at the $1.8 billion Municipal Credit Union in New York, Jenkins has served in the credit union industry for more than 30 years including with the New York Credit Union Foundation, Credit Union Association of New York and the Credit Union Executives Society.
Founded in 1999, the AACUC has more than 400 members.