MADISON, Wis. – Brian Branch, COO of the World Council of Credit Unions and a 13-year veteran of the organization, was appointed Interim CEO effective immediately. WOCCU said the appointment was due to former president/CEO Arthur Arnold pushing his resignation up a month. Arnold’s last day with WOCCU was supposed to be Jan. 1, 2005. At press time no information was available from WOCCU on why he pushed his resignation date up to December. He returned as planned to his native Netherlands where he will work as the new CEO of FMO (Finance for Development), the International Development Bank of the Netherlands. Branch has worked with credit unions and other financial institutions for the past 13 years and has been involved in development fieldwork research and implementation for more than 22 years. He serves on the Audit & Finance Committee, on the board of WOCCU Rating Agency and the WOCCU Services Group Inc. While working with WOCCU, Branch has implemented and managed institutional and financial field analysis of credit union movements in Costa Rica, El Salvador, Grenada, Guatemala, Guyana, Honduras, Jamaica, Mexico, Nicaragua, Peru, Poland, Trinidad, Suriname and Vietnam. He has provided financial management policy design and service guidelines for market-based institutional sustainability, savings protection and funding self-sufficiency. He has also developed various programs to update and expand the savings-based financial services of international credit unions. Branch received his bachelor of arts in government and Spanish from Bowdoin College, Maine, in 1979, graduating magna cum laude. He received his master of arts in Latin American studies at the University of Texas-Austin in 1981, and his doctor of philosophy of economics at the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 1990.