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With all the generous things credit unions do on a regular basis, I usually don’t worry about the type of image the industry projects to the public, but a few recent news items have made me a little concerned. For one, the American Bankers Association and Independent Community Bankers of America have both launched anti-credit union ad campaigns, which attack things like their tax-exempt status and purchases of banks, in an attempt to convince consumers that credit unions have “far exceeded their statutory mission to serve individuals of modest means.”

Then, news spread of the NCUA’s sudden, secretive taxi medallion loan sale to hedge fund Marblegate Asset Management LLC, which left New York City taxicab drivers who are unable to pay off the loans with a lot of uncertainty about their futures. While the NCUA assured drivers the hedge fund would “work with drivers to renegotiate loan terms” (only time will tell on that), the move wasn’t a good look for the agency and did not align with the credit union philosophy of putting members’ needs first.

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Natasha Chilingerian

Natasha has served as an editor for CU Times since March 2015. She also served as a communications specialist for Xceed Financial Credit Union (now Kinecta FCU) in Los Angeles from 2013-2015, and as a CU Times freelancer from 2011-2013. She has been a professional writer for more than 16 years, specializing in news and lifestyle journalism as well as marketing copywriting for companies in the finance and technology space.

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