Recapping Convention: Northwest Credit Unions Carry Out Cooperative Spirit

Last week, credit union leaders from around the region gathered in Vancouver, Wash., for the Northwest Credit Union Association’s 2012 Convention and Annual Business Meeting, a whirlwind of collaborative sessions, thought-provoking speakers and inspiring celebrations.

In case you missed anything, here is a recap of the week’s highlights…

Tuesday, Oct. 2

Recognizing outgoing CEO John Annaloro for his 15 years of association leadership was top bill at the Annual Business Meeting (ABM)Tuesday afternoon. In addition to discussing the collective accomplishments and future focus of the Association under his guidance, Annaloro was also lauded for his personal accomplishments on behalf of credit unions as he officially announced his retirement, handing over the keys to the Association’s corner office to Troy Stang, who had served as president.

Spokane Media Federal Credit Union President and CEO Debie Keesee was also installed as the new chair of the Association’s board of directors, taking the reins from Mid Oregon Federal Credit Union President and CEO Bill Anderson, who had been the board chair since the merged Association was formed in 2011.

The remaining directors were officially seated at the meeting as well, having gone from an at-large 18-member board to an 11-member board reflecting the Association’s eight geographic districts and three asset-size classifications.

The Northwest Credit Union Foundation (NWCUF) also seated its board of directors Tuesday.

Fifty-one credit unions from Oregon and Washington were recognized with Capitol Advocacy Awards immediately following the ABM, after which Credit Union National Association (CUNA) Chairman Mike Mercer provided the week’s first keynote address, pulling back the curtain on national credit union strategies.

Wednesday, Oct. 3

Wednesday was a special day at Convention, as attendees donned a “Denim and Diamonds” uniform in lieu of traditional professional attire as part of Miracle Jeans Day at Convention. Attendees pre-registered to receive an exclusive T-shirt, with all proceeds going to support Credit Unions for Kids. The day was capped by an auction benefiting the same cause that featured the family of Bruce Rouillard, president emeritus of the Washington Credit Union League, whose four-year-old grandson, Nate O’Dell, suffers from a genetic condition called Fragile X Syndrome. Over $75,000 was raised at the auction.

Wednesday was also Convention’s first full day, and Convention-goers heard from Rabobank’s Arnold Kuijpers and a panel of Canadian credit union leaders as the day’s two keynote addresses, as well as from Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler (R-Wash.), a credit union champion in the U.S. House of Representatives.

The Foundation unveiled a new brand over breakfast, and seven credit unions from the Northwest were presented with CUNA Awards at a luncheon on Wednesday. Outstanding NWCUA credit union chapters were also recognized Wednesday with Chapter Excellence Awards.

Thursday, Oct. 4

On Thursday, Dr. Neil Goldman presented attendees with a look at exclusive research funded by the Association regarding public awareness of the credit union difference—and how credit unions can best spread their message. The morning’s keynote address came from Jeff Russell, who told Convention-goers to “prepare for change” when it comes to payment systems, and Sen. Jeff Merkley enthusiastically brought up the credit union member business lending bill during his address, saying, “Let’s get that done!”

Convention was capped with the annual Summit Awards Dinner, which honored a select few leaders in the region’s credit union movement—including Annaloro, who was recognized with a video tribute and presented with a gift from the Foundation board.


Questions? Contact Training Programs Coordinator Yuri Jung: 206.340.4817,

Posted in Awards, GoWest Solutions, Industry Insight, MAXX Annual Convention, NWCUA.