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L-R: Hank Barrett, CEO of Valley First CU; Robin Lentz, CEO of Cabrillo CU; and Jeff Napper, CEO of LBS Financial CU

'REACH': THREE CA CEOs SPEAK OUT
updated 10/03/13 09:07 AM
Rekindled Optimism Shines Forward
With the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues' 2013 Annual Meeting and Convention right around the corner, three CEOs have stepped up to share how their credit unions are modeling the concept of “reach up, reach out, reach deep” to create meaningful and lasting relationships with members.

Their individual stories uncover an age-old principle within the credit union movement—when you put members first, everyone succeeds.

Click here to learn more about REACH, the Leagues' 2013 Annual Meeting and Convention, and to register!

Valley First CU
CEO: Hank Barrett
Assets: $500 million
Members: 64,000
Headquarters: Modesto, CA

In His Own Words...
We’re reaching out by looking at our relationship with members and whether we’re both benefiting from that relationship. We’re examining how our ties with them can be more beneficial without being a financial burden on us.
We’re also trying to educate them about the self-sufficiency of using internet and mobile banking. We want to move them to a place that’s more advantageous for both of us since we’ll be establishing more electronic delivery points in the future.
Overall, we want to do what’s fair. We attempt to educate them so they won’t get hammered with big fees. We want to work with them. If we see that they’re having a tough time, we assist in getting them to a better place.
We reach deep by being very intertwined in our communities. We’re active in fundraisers, nonprofit organizations, and some major groups on a regular basis. We’re part of the community, so we give back to the community.
We’re reaching up by watching what other credit unions are doing and talking to them. We don’t think we know everything. We are not reinventing the wheel, but instead we’re learning from where others have gone before us.
Our credit union also reaches up by being engaged in the political arena. We can’t just talk to credit union-friendly candidates only during the campaign season—we have to be there the entire way and build relationships. We must represent our members’ interests by standing together politically.

Cabrillo CU
CEO: Robin Lentz
Assets: $195 million
Members: 24,000
Headquarters: San Diego, CA

In Her Own Words...
Our credit union is trying to reach up, out, and deep through the decisions we make every day at work. Although our field of membership has expanded over the years, we have never forgotten our roots. We’ve had a strong relationship with the U.S. Border Patrol since we were chartered in 1955 to serve them.
As a result of this, their employees call on us when they need a variety of services, including Fallen Agent Memorial Accounts—an account set up for donations to help those affected when a border patrol agent is killed in the line of duty. We are also involved in the patrol’s “musters” and other events, and are at their disposal for any special needs they may have.
Understanding our members’ specific needs has helped us develop products and programs. More recently, we introduced the Sequestration Advance Loan in response to the impact from the federal government’s budget sequestration. This loan is interest-free for 60 days, advances up to $2,500, and can be repaid over 24 months. More than 800 members took advantage of it within the first two weeks.
We also offer “early Friday paydays,” payroll advance loans, advances for DMV fees, and a program on auto loans where we pay members $50 if we can’t meet or beat an interest rate offered by a competitor.
One time a border patrol agent was wrongly accused of beating up an illegal immigrant. He was fired and faced criminal charges. He came to us for help with his loans, and we were able to work with him while he was on trial.
In the end, he was exonerated and reinstated with the Border Patrol. He was so grateful we worked with him during that terrible time that he brought his entire family in to personally thank our collection employees. We were the only creditor that helped him.

LBS Financial CU
CEO: Jeff Napper
Assets: $1 billion
Members: 113,000
Headquarters: Long Beach, CA

In His Own Words...
We’re focusing on making a difference in the lives of our members by building trust and showing compassion for their individual financial situations. We believe that trust, compassion, and our employees are the key ingredients to building lasting and unique relationships.
Handling money requires us to build confidence with our members. If change occurs frequently at the employee level, members develop a sense of distrust.
Fortunately, our employee turnover rate remains very low. We want to offer a unique “stick and stay” workplace culture for employees so that they can develop a long-lasting bond with members. If there’s frequent employee turnover, it becomes impossible for these relationships to form. We put a lot of attention toward caring for employees so they will exhibit that same compassion to our members.
We track our success by reaching out to members randomly each week to find out how they feel about their credit union, and we review reasons for account closures. We also recently implemented a member feedback tool that disseminates information from our call center and branches immediately to key staff for follow-up purposes.
We’re reaching up by looking at the bigger picture and deepening relationships, reaching out by listening to our members’ opinions, and reaching deep through compassion.

 
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SHARED CEO MODEL AND SMALL CUs updated 07/01/15 11:51 AM
CEO Jon Hernandez Shares Insight
Mattel FCU, Calcom FCU, and Nikkei CU CEO Jon Hernandez is armed with the task of running three credit unions as independent institutions, complete with their own memberships and boards. However, a savvy business man and leader, Hernandez takes advantage of economies of scale and shared resources when it makes.

CUES HONORS INSTITUTE GRADS updated 07/01/15 03:11 PM
Four from CA CUs
Four leaders from California credit unions are recent grads of the CUES Governance Leadership Institute: John Buttril, director at Xceed Financial CU; Edward Fujimoto, Supervisory Committee chair at California CU; Norma Iadevaia, board chair at University CU; and David Ostash, board chair at AltaOne FCU. A total of 39 credit union board members and executives from around the country graduated, each earning the distinguished Certified Credit Union Director (CCD) designation.

LATEST ‘MEMBERS FIRST IN ACTION’ updated 06/30/15 11:02 AM
Q2 2015 Activities from the Leagues
In this Members First In Action update, we recap the second quarter and year-to-date benefits extended to your credit union as a valued member of the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues and Credit Union National Association (CUNA).

Congress Out, Meet with CU Leaders updated 06/30/15 10:25 AM
Southern California Credit Union Leaders Meet with Long Beach Representative Alan Lowenthal
With Congress in their districts for the 4th of July Recess, credit union leaders are at work with our congressional delegation. Today, leaders from Long Beach and Orange County met with Rep. Alan Lowenthal (D-Long Beach) at LBS Financial Credit Union. Congressman Lowenthal is a long time credit union supporter — he also told the group that he has been a member of LBS Financial CU for more than 46 years!

O.C. ECONOMIC FORECAST updated 06/30/15 09:30 AM
Local Conditions Gain Momentum
Picture this: It’s January 2017. Seven years into the recovery, your local Orange County economy has found a sweet spot among California and the United States. It’s humming along nicely—not too slow, not too fast. And the past two years? Smooth sailing.

NCUA BANS PERIODIC MEM. FEES updated 06/26/15 07:44 AM
FCUs May Not Charge Periodic Fees
The National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) announced that federal credit unions cannot charge periodic membership fees, according to a letter to the American Bankers Association.

LEAGUES SUPPORT RBC STUDY ACT updated 06/26/15 02:09 PM
Submits Letter to Representatives
On June 25, California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues CEO Diana Dykstra sent a support letter to representatives Stephen Fincher (R-TN) and Dennis Heck (D-WA), the authors of H.R. 2769, the Risk Based Capital Study Act.

CA CUs GAIN MORT. MARKET SHARE updated 06/23/15 11:11 AM
Noticeable Rise Since 2009
California is no exception to the rule as credit unions nationwide continue gaining substantial market share in the competitive space for first mortgages—a trend beginning six years ago on the heels of the financial crisis.

TILA/RESPA NEW RULE DELAYED updated 06/17/15 03:05 PM
Postponed until Oct. 1, 2015
The California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues confirmed with the office of Congressman Brad Sherman: "Richard Cordray, Director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has heard from many that want to delay the effective date, or at least the rigorous enforcement of, the new TILA/RESPA form known as the TILA/RESPA Integrated Disclosure (TRID) form. He has reported that he will be delaying the effective date until Oct. 1, 2015. This is partly due to some internal details and partly due to many of us that saw the need for a delay.”

BILL ADOPTS CUNA/CU RBC CONCERNS updated 06/17/15 03:01 PM
NCUA Makes Proposal Revisions
Language was adopted today by the House Appropriations Committee via voice vote that reflects the concerns the Credit Union National Association (CUNA) and credit unions have regarding the National Credit Union Administration’s (NCUA) effort to impose a risk-based capital (RBC) guideline for credit unions

CU LEADERS PUSH DATA SECURITY IN CA updated 06/16/15 11:11 AM
'Connect For The Cause' a Success
More than 3,000 letters from credit union supporters were sent to California state legislators last week in support of Assembly Bill 83 (AB 83).

GREAT TIME TO BE A CREDIT UNION? updated 06/16/15 09:36 AM
Conference: Employees, Millennials, and More
Is it a great time to be associated with credit unions? Based on yesterday’s gathering of leaders in the industry, the answer is an overwhelming “yes”—but with a caveat.

NCUA TO DISCUSS PROPOSED MBL RULE updated 06/12/15 03:06 PM
Other Important Agenda Items Scheduled
The National Credit Union Administration board has a full agenda scheduled for its June 18 meeting, with a proposed member business lending (MBL) rule slated for discussion.

VISA: CUs CAN NAME RETAILERS updated 06/11/15 09:40 AM
Leagues’ Set the Record Straight
Visa has responded to the Leagues’ written inquiry to Visa whether or not credit unions are able to name retailers when reissuing payment cards, following a data breach. Visa clarified there is neither a rule or nor contractual obligation that requires financial institutions to withhold the name of a breaching retailer.

DIVERSITY STANDARDS ISSUED FOR FIs updated 06/10/15 10:49 AM
Regulators Issue Diversity Standards
policy statement establishing joint standards for assessing diversity policies and practices of the institutions they regulate." rows="5" cols="100" WRAP="physical">The National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) and federal banking regulators Tuesday issued their final interagency policy statement establishing joint standards for assessing diversity policies and practices of the institutions they regulate.

DATA BILL HEADS TO CALIFORNIA SENATE updated 06/09/15 10:14 AM
Committee to Review AB 83
The California Credit Union League is advocating for Assembly Bill 83 (AB 83)—data security legislation at the state level which has already passed the California State Assembly with overwhelming support. It is now headed to the Senate Judiciary Committee for its first hearing.

CO-OP SHARED BRANCH SURPASSES 5,300 updated 06/09/15 10:10 AM
More Than Bank of America
With 5,341 branches, CO-OP Shared Branch is now the nation’s third largest network of financial institution branches, according to data drawn from the FDIC—surpassing Bank of America’s 5,244 branches.

CUs CAN IDENTIFY RETAILERS IN BREACH updated 06/09/15 08:46 AM
MasterCard Clears Misconception
Electronics payment network MasterCard has responded to an inquiry by Diana Dykstra, president and CEO of the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues, regarding whether credit unions can identify a merchant responsible for a data breach, and if such action is rule- bound or under contractual obligation.

CONSUMER COMPLAINT PROCESS IMPROVED updated 06/09/15 06:09 AM
Also, NCUA Town Hall Webinar
The National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) has issued Letter to Credit Unions 15-CU-04, which describes recent changes to streamline the agency’s consumer complaint handling process.

CA CU Leaders Meet Officials updated 06/03/15 04:27 PM
Credit Union Leaders Visit Elected District Officials
In California this week, credit union leaders in Northern and Southern regions continued ongoing advocacy efforts of cultivating relationships with elected officials.

NEVADA BILLS HIGHLIGHT CU SUCCESS updated 06/02/15 11:16 AM
State Legislature Adjourns
With the Nevada Legislature adjourning for the 2015 legislative session, the Nevada Credit Union League reports it was a successful year for credit unions.

CREDIT UNIONS HIT RECORD DEPOSITS updated 06/02/15 09:30 AM
California Leads the Way
California credit unions most likely hit a record in deposits—nearly $132 billion—as credit unions nationwide reported more than $1 trillion in these accounts as of the first quarter this year.

CUs BOOST LENDING, INVESTMENTS updated 06/02/15 02:57 PM
Loan Delinquencies Fall NCUA Reports
According to the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA), federally-insured credit unions focused more on lending and less on investments to generate income during the first quarter of 2015.

GRASSROOTS RECAP: FIRST HALF OF 2015 updated 05/26/15 10:56 AM
California CUs Reach Out to Legislators
It’s evident California and Nevada credit union leaders have been active during the first half of 2015 in reaching out to state and federal legislators on both sides of the aisle to reinforce the credit union philosophy, including several district meetings, annual events, and visits to offices.