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ERVIN, Tenn. – Now here’s a story that simply rises to the occasion: it’s about Sandy Lingerfelt, president and CEO of Clinchfield Federal Credit Union and her legendary skills as the supreme maker of sourdough bread plus other delicacies. In fact, Lingerfelt, a CUNA director who makes 2,000 loaves of bread a year out of two giant ovens in her home, uses her reputation in East Tennessee to spread the “credit union difference” message by passing out loaves to local business figures at the airport, in hospitals, at civic meetings or even to nightshift workers at a SEG plant in the wee hours. “We have 46 SEGs and try to `take our show on the road’ every couple of years and visit each one of them,” says Lingerfelt. “I try to make cinnamon rolls and it’s amazing how much you can talk about the credit union when you’re on your member’s turf at 2:30 A.M..and you’re feeding them.” Lingerfelt got started making bread 15 years ago “when I was always looking for something special to give to the teachers” of her now three grown children whom she described as energetic. “I felt their teachers needed a treat just for listening to them.” A close friend and neighbor taught her about making bread and “my first thought was: you know this is a great stress reliever.” “I baked so much bread over the years that everyone in my family would check the oven when they walked in the door and just go ahead and bake it if it was ready,” laughs Lingerfelt noting her husband, Grady, would turn on the oven in the mornings “and wake me up and tell me how many minutes were left as he went to work.” Soon bread and roll making – and now even producing her own version of hot fudge sauce – had taken on a lifestyle all its own with a special CU twist. “One of my favorite stories is when my middle child was in home economics in high school, I taught bread making and I used the last 15 minutes to feed them cinnamon rolls and tell them about the credit union,” recalls Lingerfelt. “We talked about debt/income ratios, how to look up the value of your car, about not overdrafting and the following week one of the kids stopped me at the grocery store and told me his parents were so pleased with how he researched the car he wanted to buy and proved that he could afford it, that they agreed to buy him his dream car,” said Lingerfelt adding that was a story that made her day. Her life motto which she acknowledges centers on the pleasure of gift giving-in this case, breads – is simply: ” I believe each day is a gift from God and what we do with the day is our gift back to him.” [email protected]

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