TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Southeast Corporate said it is starting to see liquidity demand pick up from areas hit hard by Katrina. “Credit unions are going to need liquidity. Some without data communications don’t know where they stand,” said Southeast Corporate President & CEO Bill Birdwell Southeast has $3.2 billion in additional funding sources it can tap if necessary. Meanwhile on a supply level, Birdwell, SECORP Director of Business Continuity Ken Schroeder, and SECORP IT Technician John Smiley completed their 26-hour trip to help credit unions in Mississippi. They made three stops to deliver eight generators at each site as well as other office equipment. The drop-off sites were Singing River FCU in Moss Point, Gulf Coast Community FCU in Gulfport, and Central Sun Belt FCU in Hattiesburg. The credit unions were then handling the distribution to neighbor credit unions. The relief team literally followed the track the eye of the storm had taken, traveling up Highway 49 from Gulfport to Hattiesburg. Military and police presence was abundant and curfews were still in effect. Gasoline availability was still scarce in most areas, but beginning to rebound. “We brought 85 five-gallon cans of gasoline,” said Schroeder. “People put five gallons into their car just to be able to leave the parking lot, many to go out and get medications.” The group from Southeast was accompanied by Ed Young EVP/CIO of Credit Union 24 and Sean Dempsey, Communications Director of Credit Union 24. “People were very grateful, it was heartwarming, and certainly something I will never forget. We met a policeman guarding Gulf Coast Community FCU in Gulfport who had lost his home and everything. His wife worked at the credit union and they were both staying there. We were able to give him some food, and air mattresses to sleep on,” said Dempsey.
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