NASCUS' Fortney Announces Retirement
Mary Martha Fortney, president/CEO of NASCUS, will retire this year after more than 21 years with the organization, according to a Friday release.
“My passion will always be with the credit union system, but I feel it is time to move ahead,” said Fortney, who has been president/CEO of NASCUS for the past 11 years. “Of course this is bittersweet, but change is good for both people and organizations. I am excited by the next chapter and look forward to the future and to NASCUS' continued evolution.”
The NASCUS board, working jointly with the organization’s Advisory Council, is establishing a profile for the attitude and aptitude necessary for Fortney’s replacement, who is expected to be named during the fourth quarter of 2014. Executive placement firm O’Rourke and Associates will facilitate the search.
“On behalf of the entire board, and both the regulator and industry membership, I would like to recognize Mary Martha's leadership over a challenging period for both the regulators and the industry,” said NASCUS Board Chair John Kolhoff, Michigan’s state credit union regulator. “Through this period of significant change she has been a leader in establishing strong dialogue amongst federal and state regulators and the institutions they supervise.”
Joining NASCUS in 1993 as director of Accreditation and Communications, Fortney was the senior staff member responsible for the NASCUS state accreditation program and for NASCUS written communications. In late 1995, she became the first vice president of the organization.
A nationally recognized leader in the credit union industry and a highly respected advocate for the credit union system, Fortney was instrumental in moving NASCUS forward in its efforts to promote and ensure the viability of the state credit union system, the organization said in the release.
Under Fortney’s leadership, NASCUS became a known voice in Washington, and the organization now routinely works with the other financial regulators and policymakers to reshape prudential regulation for the 21st century.
“NASCUS, state regulators and state credit union officials are appreciative of Mary Martha’s tireless efforts on behalf of the dual charter during her tenure. She has led NASCUS through an important period of credit union history and positioned NASCUS to continue to evolve with the industry as we look forward to the future,” said Advisory Chair Catherine Tierney, president/CEO of the $2 billion Community First Credit Union in Appleton, Wis.
Fortney was often an outspoken early-advocate with NASCUS taking the first official regulator policy positions in favor of responsible charter advancements in areas such as secondary capital, expanded and diversified fields of membership, business lending, protecting credit union unrelated business tax exemption and protecting state authority.
Prior to joining NASCUS, she served as the director of Agency Liaison, Office of Presidential Correspondence in the Carter White House. Fortney also spent 12 years on Capitol Hill, where she was the legislative director for a member of the U.S. House of Representatives and the majority staff director for the Subcommittee on General Oversight and Investigations of the House Committee on Banking, Finance and Urban Affairs.
For the past 15 years, she has been actively involved with Women in Housing & Finance, an association of women and men who actively promote women in the fields of financial services and housing. Fortney has served as WHF President and is currently President of its sister organization, the WHF Foundation which offers programs and sponsors events and volunteer opportunities to fulfill its mission to help women and families in the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area with guidance on housing and finance.
Fortney's distinctive career will be honored as part of the proceedings at the 2014 NASCUS Annual State System Summit, Sept. 10-12, in Nashville, Tenn.