Larry Middleman speaks at a CUBG conference in 2019. (Photo: CUBG)

Larry Middleman wrote the original business plan for the Portland, Ore.-based commercial services CUSO CU Business Group by hand on a piece of paper, front and back, while stuck in an airport for five hours back in 2001. Now he’s gearing up to retire from his role as president/CEO of the CUSO – which still practices some of the original business model concepts he jotted down during that long layover – but not before enjoying CUBG’s first in-person conferences since 2019.

Over 20 years, Middleman has grown CUBG from that handwritten business plan into the industry’s largest commercial services CUSO. Now owned by six corporate credit unions, CUBG employs 75 people, services more than $2.5 billion in commercial loans, hosts numerous educational events and recently expanded into SBA lending through its acquisition of another CUSO. He will retire at the end of September, just after the CUSO wraps up its first post-pandemic in-person conferences in Portland and Memphis, Tenn., and will be succeeded by Justin Conrey, who has spent the last five years as a CUBG executive.

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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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