ANAHEIM, Calif. – This may be David Chatfield and DianaDykstra's last California and Nevada Credit Union League's CreditUnion Leadership Summit as president/CEO and chairman, but youwouldn't have known it from their impassioned opening statements.Both leaders opened the event's grand assembly with calls to actionfor delegates to actively join the fight, if they haven't already,against the banking industry's attacks on the credit unionmovement. Dykstra diverted from her prepared remarks to share apersonal story that illustrates the need to educate the publicabout the differences between credit unions and banks. The SanFrancisco Fire Credit Union chief described a tire store she passeson the drive to work each day, which features a marquee sign thatchanges its message daily. Earlier this year, she saw a messagethat struck her as relevant to her industry. “It read, `Allpolitics are based on the indifference of the majority',” Dykstrasaid, “which means we must all band together, we must all worktogether, because we cannot become the indifference of themajority.” President/CEO David Chatfield warned the audience thatthe threat to the credit union industry is advancing. “This isn'tjust hype or trade association talk to justify dues. Others havedeclared themselves to be our adversaries, and they are definitelygaining strength,” he said. Chatfield stressed the urgency of time,announcing the U.S. House Ways and Means Committee's plans to holda hearing Nov. 3 to review the tax-exempt status of credit unions.Referring to bank industry strategy, Chatfield said, “They're notafter some of us, they're after all of us.” Chatfield had strongwords for the bankers, mincing no words saying that greed isdriving their anti-credit union agenda. Credit unions areconsumers' last defense against a greedy banking industry,Chatfield said, adding, “If we weren't here, they could do whateverthey'd like to consumers.” The League leader said credit unions canwin the fight, but only if industry executives recognize that it istheir job to organize and lead an effective opposition. -


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