The wardrobe options may have been what initially drew Denise Wymore, vice president of member loyalty at Santa Fe, N.M.-based Del Norte Credit Union to credit unions, but the ability to make a real difference in people’s lives has been what has kept her going 31 years later.

“I had been working as a waitress at a fish and chips restaurant in a wench costume all through high school, and I had to wear a uniform to school, so when I graduated, my whole motivation was that I wanted to wear real clothes,” said Wymore. “I had no idea what a credit union was and they gave me a chance as a teller because I had cash handling skills. I don’t think they really knew what to do with me, and I really had a rocky start. Honestly I almost left, but luckily I got to see Carol Schillios speak, and as I listened to her talk about serving people and that we’re lucky because we get to make a difference in people’s lives, it completely re-energized me.”

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