Hands holding red heart Source: JK Sulit/Shutterstock

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 Chilingerian has worked in the credit union space for over a decade. She joined CU Times as managing editor in 2015 and was promoted to executive editor in 2019. Before that, she served as a communications specialist for Xceed Financial Credit Union (now Kinecta Federal Credit Union) in Los Angeles from 2013-2015, and as a CU Times freelancer from 2011-2013. She has been a professional writer and editor for more than 17 years, specializing in news and lifestyle journalism as well as marketing copywriting for companies in the finance and technology space.

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