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SAN MARCOS, Calif. – Mission Federal Credit Union is mum on its decision to pull out of a lecture series at Cal State University-San Marcos, but the school claims there were some concerns on past speakers. After three years of being a major contributor to the intercultural speaker series, the university gave back Mission FCU’s $10,000 contribution after the credit union decided in July not to contribute to the series. According to a Sept. 30 article in the North County Times, Jonathan Poullard, the school’s dean, said Mission FCU decided to cease contributions “because credit union representatives had received a number of calls of `consternation’ regarding speakers that the series had brought to campus over the last three years.” One-time Communist Party vice president candidate Angela Davis, now a professor at UC Santa Cruz, spoke in 2001 and Jonathan Kozol, who writes about inequalities in the nation’s school districts, spoke in 2002. An appearance in 2003 by controversial filmmaker Michael Moore was canceled because of the October wildfires that year. “I think they thought maybe this isn’t the program for us, and they weren’t quite sure they wanted to continue to support this particular program,” Poullard told the newspaper. Despite several calls to the credit union, no one responded. On Mission FCU’s Web site, officials provided a response to members who had questions about Moore’s appearance before it was canceled. “A number of our members have wanted to know how Mission Fed financially supports San Diego’s educational community,” the site reads. “We have also invested in literally thousands of initiatives over the years that have directly supported the educational community, as part of our commitment to San Diego’s extended community and measured by our social performance.” Listing the more than $130,000 in contributions to scholarships and schools for the homeless among other projects, Mission FCU said “our efforts stand up to the most stringent of scrutiny, typically without the controversy and polarization of the Michael Moore speaking event.” The credit union goes on to say “as for politics, regardless of our personal viewpoints that differ and are as diverse as our members, we simply don’t go there institutionally. Our federal charter, and non-profit structure, prohibits the credit union from supporting any political campaigns. The one place we can be sure to agree, politically speaking, however, is to encourage each and every one of you to vote!” Poullard said the university is still hopeful it can continue a relationship with Mission FCU. [email protected]

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