AUSTIN, Texas — Funeral services were held recently for Larry Strong, CEO of the $485 million Velocity Credit Union, who died of an apparent heart attack Nov. 23. He was 61.Strong served the $425 million CU for more than 30 years, assuming the role of president and CEO in 1988. It was under Strong’s leadership that in 2003, the CU, one of Austin’s oldest, changed its name from Austin Municipal CU to Velocity CU.Though retaining the CEO title, last January Strong gave up the president’s title to Debbie Mitchell, chief operating officer.The CU noted that under Strong’s leadership in August 2006, Velocity CU became the eighth CU in Texas to earn the Texas Credit Union League’s Juntos Avanzamos (Together we Advance) designation demonstrating its commitment to helping Austin’s unbanked and underserved communities.“Larry never hesitated to give praise when praise was due, to criticize when it was deserved, or speak his mind on any number of issues. You always knew where you stood with him and he was an honorable man,” said Mitchell. “He made a huge impression on me as my friend and mentor for the past 24 years and I miss him deeply.”“He was my friend for 35 years, and he was an action-oriented man. He lived by one of his favorite sayings: Lead, follow or get out of the way,” said Grady Chandler, Velocity Credit Union Chief Financial Officer.Strong served in the U.S. army from 1967-1968, including a tour in Vietnam. One of his proudest accomplishments was being the first recipient of the Award of Excellence from the Credit Union National Association Management School at the University of Houston.–[email protected]

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