Vance, Wooden Join Esteemed Colleagues in Filene’s i3 Program

Matt Vance has been on the credit union innovation radar screen for a long time.

In 2012 he was honored with a Trailblazer Award by the Credit Union Times, for “his passion in pursuing and delivering on ideas that are relevant and add real value to consumers’ lives.” He was also selected as one of 15 young professionals to “crash” the America’s Credit Union Conference to infuse new blood and fresh thought into the credit union movement.

The year before, Vance stepped up and volunteered to pilot a program rewarding consumers with low FICO scores for making loan payments on time. The Lower Interest for Timeliness (LIFT) program was a pet project developed in the famed Filene Research Institute’s i3 program.

Now it’s Vance’s turn to help develop new ideas and innovations for credit unions—he is one of 15 credit union professionals selected for the next two-year term.

“I’m very excited and honored to be joining a group of talented and innovative credit union leaders,” said Vance. “I most look forward to learning with and from these leaders while we develop offerings that assist credit unions and their members.”

Joining Vance this term is Brett Wooden, formerly of Unitus Community Credit Union and also no stranger to innovation. Wooden was honored with the Northwest Credit Union Foundation “Young Credit Union Professional of the Year” award in 2011, for his trend-setting use of his iPad to perform member service in the field. Unitus was among the first credit unions in the country to move in that direction in 2010, and within months, it became almost an industry standard.

“I want to bring ideas back to my credit union,” said Wooden, who has recently become SVP of marketing, business development and IT for Cy-Fair FCU in Houston. “It’s going to be a great opportunity to be with all of those innovative people in one room.”

This year’s i3 program kicks off at Filene’s big bright minds event in October at Princeton University in New Jersey.

“If innovation were simply about ideas, our job would be a lot easier,” said Matt Davis, innovation director at Filene. “Making ideas happen requires a rare skill set. We look for credit union professionals who are passionate about fixing problems for consumers, have a track record of breathing life into new ideas, can excite others about their ideas and have the best chance of leading credit unions for the next generation.”

Vance and Wooden will be joined by 13 other innovators in the upcoming term:

  • Laurie Butz, senior vice president, human resources, Community First Credit Union Green Bay, Wis.
  • Scott Coe, senior vice president, marketing, CoastHills Federal Credit Union, Santa Barbara, Calif.
  • Douglas Ebner, manager, business technology & innovation, First West Credit Union, Westbank, BC, Canada
  • Kathi Goodell, project coordinator, NorthCountry Federal Credit Union, Va.
  • Mark Hamid, vice president – chief of retail operations, Fort Lee Federal Credit Union, Prince George, Va.
  • Jeremy Hayes, senior vice president, Assemblies of God Credit Union, Springfield Mo.
  • Rachel Langtry, vice president of marketing and communications, Credit Union 1, Anchorage, Ala.
  • Rob Lefkowicz, vice president of member service delivery, Park Side Federal Credit Union, Whitefish, Mont.
  • Evelyn Royer, vice president risk management, Purdue Federal Credit Union, West Lafayette, Ind.
  • Serese Selanders, VP sales and development, Affinity Credit Union, Des Moines, Iowa
  • Jennifer Sider, development officer, Duke University Federal Credit Union, Durham, N.C.
  • Suzanne Weinstein, CFO, Orlando Federal Credit Union, Orlando Fla.
  • Jennifer Wolfe, AVP, business systems delivery, Partners Federal Credit Union, Orlando Fla.


Questions? Contact Lynn Heider: 503.350.2225,

Posted in Federal, Marketing & Communications.