Massachusetts Credit Unions Approve Three-League Merger
The credit union industry has a new league.
Bay State credit unions voted 60-0 Wednesday to merge their Massachusetts Credit Union League with the New Hampshire Credit Union League and Credit Union Association of Rhode Island to form the Cooperative Credit Union Association.
The latter two trade organizations also voted unanimously earlier this month to consolidate.
"It is great to see the concept of the Cooperative Credit Union Association come to fruition,” Paul Gentile, president/CEO of the three state trade associations, said. “The overwhelming show of support we received from our membership is a strong statement about their commitment to the new association.”
Gentile added, “As we've said from day one, advocacy is our core role and this structure is designed to put more resources into advocacy. We will maintain our focus on legislative, regulatory and consumer advocacy to improve the operating environment for credit unions.”
The Cooperative Credit Union Association will officially launch operations Jan. 1, 2015, and its headquarter operations will remain in Marlborough, Mass.
More than a year ago, a 13-member transitional board that was appointed by the boards of each of the three state trade associations to develop the framework for the merger process. That board will be replaced by a nine-member board, which represents the new governance structure of the Cooperative Credit Union Association, Gentile said.
The nine-member board will be named at the association’s first annual meeting next year in Boston, he said. The date of the annual meeting has yet to be determined.
The board will consist of five credit unions from Massachusetts, two from Rhode Island and two from New Hampshire. Each state will have representatives from a large and small credit union. To ensure that one state cannot dominate decision making, super majority votes will be required for major or strategic issues.
In each of the three states, the local identities and branding will continue under the names of “Massachusetts Credit Unions,” “New Hampshire Credit Unions” and the “Credit Unions of Rhode Island.” They also will continue to support charities, community programs and other initiatives in their respective states.
This merger is the eighth league consolidation since 2007 when the North and South Dakota Credit Union Leagues formed the Credit Union Association of the Dakotas.
Later, the Maryland and Washington leagues combined as did the Arizona, Colorado and Wyoming credit union leagues under the Mountain West Credit Union Association.
The Alabama and Florida credit union leagues merged under the League of Southeastern Credit Unions, and the Oregon and Washington credit union leagues consolidated under the Northwest Credit Union Association.
Last year, the Texas Credit Union League, the Arkansas Credit Union League and the Credit Union Association of Oklahoma consolidated under the Cornerstone Credit Union League, and the North Carolina Credit Union League and the South Carolina Credit Union League merged under the Carolina Credit Union League.