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In response to a letter in the June 12th issue of Credit Union Times concerning succession plans, I strongly feel that credit unions should look internally before going to the outside to fill any positions. First, you know what you are getting. Second, the staff members who have contributed to the success of the credit union should be given the first opportunity to fill any positions including the Chief Executive Officer. In our case, the staff members in line for the staff officer positions have at least 15 years experience. The staff officers who are greatly responsible for our growing from $10,000,000 to over $180,000,000 have over 25 years experience. If a CEO cannot train and develop a successor over 25 years, they have not fulfilled one of their main responsibilities. Finally, we think a qualified assistant has earned the right to be given a chance to be the CEO after spending over 25 years in training and who has contributed so much to the credit union’s success. Jeff Rush President/CEO Firestone Office FCU Akron, Ohio

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