CUNA Mutual Changes Guard
Jeff Post, who has led CUNA Mutual Group as president/CEO of the company since 2005, announced Nov. 8 that he will retire at the end of the year.
Since joining CUNA Mutual in June of 2005, Trunzo has held a number of senior leadership positions, most recently as president of CUNA Mutual Group Insurance and Financial Services. He becomes the eighth president in the company’s 78-year history.
“I’m honored and humbled to lead CUNA Mutual Group. We have solid business strategies in motion and the company is well positioned to continue the strong momentum we have in our marketplace,” Trunzo told Credit Union Times.
In his role as president of CUNA Mutual Group Insurance and Financial Services, Trunzo was responsible for the products, distribution and service of the company’s U.S. credit union businesses as well as its 401(k) business, the company said. Trunzo was also responsible for nearly 3,000 of the company’s 4,500 employees and approximately $2 billion of CUNA Mutual’s annual revenues.
With Trunzo taking the helm in January, one of the company’s priorities is to build on its financial strength so that CUNA Mutual can deliver on promises to credit unions long into the future, he said. For instance, the company said it has made significant investments in a number of its product lines including TruStage lending products, retirement plan services and CUNA Brokerage Services Inc.
“These are core business areas for us—and are a significant part of our long-term strategy,” Trunzo said. “We will also continue delivering the credit union protection products that are vital to the credit union movement.”
Regarding making any adjustments within CUNA Mutual’s current management team, Trunzo said one of his priorities is to keep positive momentum in the marketplace.
“We currently have excellent managers who have delivered consistent results,” Trunzo pointed out. “Although we continually look for ways to improve our organization, I have a great deal of confidence in my team.”
Trunzo also said he does not have any plans to consolidate operations within the company, but added he would take a serious look at such opportunities that would benefit the firm’s customers.
CUNA Mutual faces many of the same challenges as credit unions do, he said.
“The financial services landscape is changing and changing fast. That means we have to continually anticipate where the market is headed and plan appropriately,” Trunzo explained. “We are in a strong financial position and have sound business strategies in place that make me feel confident about our ability to succeed long-term.”
Trunzo gives strong credit to Post for leaving CUNA Mutual in a solid position, leading a multi-year transformation plan that repositioned the organization for success in the credit union marketplace and beyond. The plan included reinvention of the firm’s sales distribution model and its customer service, product and investment strategies.
“I’m very comfortable with the decision,” Post said of his pending retirement. “In my nine years, our people have come together and accomplished so many great things. Bob’s ready to carry the vision forward.”
Next Page: The Time Was Right
Post said his retirement was simply the right time for him and his wife, Lisa. Post will be assisting CUNA Mutual’s board and Trunzo to assure a smooth transition through July 2014, according to Eldon Arnold, CUNA Mutual board chairman. After then, Post said he’s looking forward to some much-deserved leisure time. While there are many positives about being the president of an insurance company, Post said having personal time isn’t one of them.
“I’m going to take it easy for a while; I have some cars that need attention,” he said. “My schedule has been rigorous, to say the least. I’m looking forward to coming up for air, but I’ll miss the committed people of our company who every day step up and make a difference for our customers. I’ll also miss the credit union people, many of whom have become good friends to me and Lisa.”
“The time’s right for the company, too. Under Bob’s capable leadership, CUNA Mutual Group will maintain its customer focus, continued growth and positive momentum,” Post said. “The company has a bright future, and I’m honored to have been a part of helping make that happen.” Indeed, Post said CUNA Mutual took its financials to new heights by growing the company 44% while breaking down barriers to sharpen customer service and diversifying its business in a way that has benefited credit unions.
“I’d like to think we did business the right way. We identified—and we now live by—core corporate values to guide how we operate,” he said. “We made hard decisions in many areas, including our product portfolio. But in the end, I believe the company, credit unions and our employees are better off for it.”
After a thorough succession planning process and extensive consideration, CUNA Mutual’s board of directors said Trunzo was the right candidate to carry on the company’s “rich tradition and execute our future strategy,” Arnold said.
A native of Louisville, Ky., Trunzo was once Secretary of Commerce under former Wisconsin Gov. Tommy Thompson. He is a member of the board of directors of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, and serves on the American Council of Life Insurers’ CEO Steering Committee on Retirement and Financial Security.
Trunzo received his bachelor’s degree in political science from the University of Kentucky and his law degree from Marquette University. He also completed the Kellogg School of Management Executive Program at Northwestern University in 2011.