At CUNA GAC 14, which concluded last week, CO-OP Financial Services’ exhibit on the history of payments was the hit of the conference, with nearly 300 visitors taking a tour through the booth. (If we do say so ourselves! But, please find confirmation in the coverage we received in Credit Union Times and Credit Union Magazine.
We’re also bursting with pride that Sarah Canepa Bang, President/COO of FSCC, LLC, and Chief Strategy Officer for CO-OP Shared Branching, was a 2014 Herb Wegner Award recipient for Individual Achievement, as reported on by Credit Union Times, Credit Union Journal and Credit Union Magazine.
The impact of CO-OP Financial Services was also felt at the conference via the honoring of Samantha Paxson, Vice President, Marketing, and Caroline Willard, Executive Vice President, Markets and Strategy, as “Women to Watch” by Credit Union Times. CO-OP was also the sponsor of CU Times’ annual Trailblazer Award Reception.
From the industry’s largest trade show, we also wanted to report on some intriguing things the featured speakers had to say during the symposium portion.
Former U.K. Prime Minister Tony Blair said: “You’ve got a great movement in credit unions in the United States.” However, in an observation that any leader of a credit union could relate to, he added: “This is a tough time to be a leader. Today the best and easiest short-term politics is often in conflict with the best long-term policy.” He also voiced the credo that “When you decide, you divide.” Yet, that is what a leader is paid to do.
Former U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright observed: “To my mind credit unions are like the Tom Hanks of the banking world. They’re likeable, everywhere and not misbehaving in the ‘Wolf of Wall Street.’ I am a fan.” She went on to identify three international megatrends that also have their implications for credit unions: 1) Globalization, 2) Information technology and 3) “The rise of power of non-state actors, such as non-governmental organizations, multi-nationals and groups like credit unions that can make their own decisions and help shape the international terrain.”
Finally, Richard Metsger, the newest addition to the NCUA Board, said that credit unions must not be “so constrained by their regulator, or so risk-adverse that they cannot meet the financial needs of their members. Credit unions must remain relevant in the mix of financial services options available to the American public. A credit union that is safe and sound, but irrelevant to its members’ needs, is not a viable outcome of regulation.”
It sounds as if Mr. Metsger is telling credit unions to “Be There. Be More” for their members. CO-OP Financial Services can help via our broad line of solutions and through our own THINK Conference and strategic resource initiative.