After nearly a year in formation, the new League of Southeastern Credit Unions, combining the Florida and Alabama Credit Union Leagues, becomes legal and official on Jan. 4.The new league, which cleared all corporate hurdles, including an Internal Revenue Service sign off, starts the new year with two separate offices, a staff reshuffling, at least one new appointment and a mission to “provide advocacy and information to our 322 members.”Delivering that message was Patrick La Pine, president/CEO of the trade group who took over in August from veteran Florida and Alabama league managers. La Pine vowed last week to “prove our worth during a difficult time for our industry.”Under the reorganization approved at a Dec. 15 league board meeting in Orlando, LSCU sporting a new logo, offices in Tallahassee and Birmingham and consolidated processing units, will have a management team combining executives from both the Florida and Alabama leagues.Serving under La Pine will be Andy Price, senior vice president-government affairs; Cassandra Grayson, association services chief of staff; Carol Lucas, chief financial officer; Marvin Garland, executive vice president/chief operating officer of LSCU Service Corp.; and Eleanor Brown, vice president of CU-ACE and Birmingham office director.Brought in as the new vice president of communications was Michael Bridges, former director of public affairs at the Michigan Credit Union League. Before being tapped for the LSCU job, La Pine was the former top lobbyist and executive vice president for the Michigan group.La Pine said LSCU will not retain a formal headquarters, but he and other staffers will commute between the two cities with legislative advocacy handled at both sites. Apart from the mechanics of combining staff and processing operations of two established leagues, La Pine said he also has worked toward visiting CEOs across the two states to discuss ways to give league membership enhanced value.La Pine said he hopes to be successful in convincing a group of both large and midsize unaffiliated CUs in both states to resume their CUNA/league membership. –[email protected]

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