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SALT LAKE CITY – With regulatory and compliance demands on the rise, Mountain America Federal Credit Union has created a new position -senior vice president/chief risk officer – and promoted Cathy Smoyer, vice president of risk management, to the job. Gordon Dames, president/CEO, said although his CU has long had a risk management team in place, the new post is “dedicated solely to minimizing the risk potential” to the CU and its members in such areas as identity theft, auditing and loan documentation. Smoyer with more than 14 years of financial experience is a certified internal auditor, fraud examiner and CUCE compliance officer. In her new position, Mountain America said Smoyer would be charged with developing a risk assessment program covering a range of product and service areas “to help determine the best operational approach to lessen or negate those risks.” She will oversee several CU divisions including: Compliance, Operational Fraud, Loan Documentation Review, Risk Management and Internal Auditing. An article on Smoyer’s promotion in the Deseret Morning News noted that in joining the “executive team” she is the second woman to do so following Annette Zimmerman, chief information officer in becoming “the credit union’s chief risk officer.” “No, I don’t think there are many females at this level,” she told the Deseret News. “Certainly in the credit union industry, I think we have a larger percentage of women, particularly in the branches. But once you move into the executive level, there are fewer. Fewer still in the risk area. “It’s a newer field, one that is still evolving. A lot of people moving into risk management are coming from what I’d consider traditionally male areas: auditing, fraud, law enforcement. There’s just a bigger pool of men, I think.”

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