JACKSONVILLE – The $6 billion-Southwest Corporate Federal Credit Union is really making itself known in the Southeast of late. Last month Southwest and Georgia Central CU announced merger plans, with Southwest as the surviving corporate. If completed, the merger will give Southwest Corporate an instant presence in Georgia, with about 225 Georgia CUs currently members of Georgia Central CU. Just recently Southwest Corporateopened its third share draft processing facility, with the opening of a facility in Jacksonville, Fla. The site is expected to surpass the 10 million items processed mark during the month of June. "In opening this new state-of-the-art facility, Southwest Corporate is now perhaps the nation's largest processor of credit union share drafts. But we are not so big that we forget what is important," said Francis Lee, CEO of Southwest Corporate FCU, during the Grand Opening of the site. Interestingly, the $1.8 billion Southeast Corporate FCU, Tallahassee, Fla. is also planning to open a facility in Jacksonville. The two corporates will likely become share draft proessor competitors in the Southeast in the years to come. "Some look out over the horizon and predict that someday people will no longer use share drafts or checks. But that day is not here. And so, we are making this commitment-a commitment to the credit unions here in Florida-with this new facility," Lee said. Gerald Gurney, Southwest Corporate's Chairman, said to mark the 10 millionth item processed, Southwest Corporate is donating $1,000 to the National Credit Union Foundation. "I am pleased that the National Credit Union Foundation, among other things, supports financial literacy," Gurney said. "Young people often miss out on a good overview of our financial services system. It is in everyone's best interest to have people well informed about financial services," he noted. Jody Beck, SVP of Operations for Southwest Corporate, noted that putting the site into operation has been challenging. "Many of the staff members here have worked long hours getting this facility ready to meet the needs of our new credit union members. The staff here is top-notch," she said. The Jacksonville facility, combined with share draft operations in Dallas and Houston, makes the $6 billion Southwest Corporate Federal Credit Union one of the nation's largest processors of credit union share drafts. In 2000, Southwest Corporate processed more than a quarter billion items for 472 credit unions. [email protected]

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