News & Notes: Here’s What’s Happening Around the Credit Union Movement

Nominations Now Being Accepted for 2015 Herb Wegner Memorial Awards

Nominations are now being accepted for the National Credit Union Foundation’s 2015 Herb Wegner Memorial Awards, which will be presented at the NCUF’s annual awards dinner on March 9 in Washington, D.C.

The awards dinner, which will be held in conjunction with the Credit Union National Association’s Governmental Affairs Conference, shines a spotlight on leaders of the national and international credit union movements whose achievements fulfill the mission of promoting financial freedom for consumers around the world.

Two Northwest credit union leaders — Gary Oakland and Sarah Canepa Bang — were among the 2014 recipients.

“We are encouraging credit union people to nominate their best and brightest for NCUF’s Wegner Awards, which are widely considered the highest national honors in the credit union movement,” says Danielle Brown, the foundation’s director of donor relations and development.

Nominations must be received by Thursday, July 31 for:

  • Lifetime Achievement: This award honors an individual who has dedicated his or her life to promoting the credit union philosophy, created innovative concepts and provided leadership that has had a significant and lasting impact on the local and/or national and/or international credit union movement.
  • Individual Achievement: This award honors an unsung hero for his or her innovative concepts and/or accomplishments that are ongoing, and for current contributions to the credit union community for work within the past three to five years. Accomplishments must have had a significant impact or a potential impact on the local and/or national and/or international credit union movement with measured results. Nominations must cite a specific subject of achievement such as financial literacy, service to the underserved, alternatives to predatory lending, and/or new products.
  • Outstanding Organization/Program: This award honors an organization, program or business for its innovative concepts, products and services that have had a significant impact on the local and/or national and/or international credit union movement with measured results.

Nominations can come from individuals and/or organizations. Nomination forms are available online at the NCUF’s website, and completed applications must include at least five letters of recommendation citing examples of the nominee’s achievements relevant to the award criteria.

For more information about the Wegner Awards, contact Danielle Brown at or 608.556.2406.

Northwest Credit Unions Can Help Filene Test New Debit Card Designed to Prevent Elder Financial Abuse

Filene Research Institute is looking for credit unions to test a new prepaid debit card designed to prevent elder financial abuse.

The True Link Card, from San Francisco startup True Link, combines a debit card with mobile alerts and an online spending monitor to proactively identify potential financial fraud. Cardholders and their trusted “administrators” can block purchases at specific stores or merchant categories, easily set or adjust spending limits, receive alerts of suspicious charges and auto-reload from a linked account on a schedule or as needed.

Testing for the new card will begin in July.

Filene is hosting a free webinar on Thursday, May 22, to explain more about the True Link Card and talk about the opportunity for credit unions to help test the prototype. For more information or to register, go to

CUNA HR/TD Council’s Executive Committee Includes NWCUA’s Huggard

Three new members will join the CUNA HR/TD Council’s executive committee for 2014 and Robert Davis, senior vice president of human resources for VyStar Credit Union in Jacksonville, Florida, will become the committee chair, the council announced at its 20th annual conference in April.

Four committee members will retain their seats in 2014, including Jennifer Huggard (right), the Northwest Credit Union Association’s vice president for administration.

New members include Buddy Bennett, manager of human resources and training for Cyprus Federal Credit Union in West Jordan, Utah; Mark Millwood, director of human resources for Eastman Credit Union in Kingsport, Tennessee; and Nora Swart, senior vice president of talent for Lake Michigan Credit Union in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

In addition to Davis, council officers will include Vice Chair Cindy Swigert, chief human resources officer for United Federal Credit Union in St. Joseph, Michigan; and Second Vice Chair Lisa Baron, senior vice president of human resources and talent management for Baxter Credit Union in Vernon Hills, Illinois.

Three other current members return with Huggard for 2014. They include Robert Carmichael, senior vice president of human resources and training and development for Maine Savings Federal Credit Union in Hampden, Maine; Suzanne Oliver, senior vice president of educational services and governmental affairs for Mountain America Federal Credit Union in West Jordan, Utah; and Linda Steger, vice president of human resources for NRL Federal Credit Union in Oxon Hill, Maryland.

Membership in CUNA’s ‘Invaluable’ Lending Council Now Tops 1,200

Bill Vogeney says he can’t imagine being in the credit union lending business in a leadership role without being a member of CUNA’s Lending Council. Apparently, a lot of his colleagues agree, because the Lending Council announced this month that it has become one of only two CUNA Councils with membership that exceeds 1,200.

“The Lending Council continues to grow not only because members appreciate the value of an organization devoted to learning and sharing with peers, but because the lending business is becoming more and more challenging with every year,” says Vogeney, the council’s executive committee chair and EVP/CLO at Ent Federal Credit Union in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

Gayle Rust Gustafson, chair of the Lending Council’s membership committee and vice president of lending at Rivermark Community Credit Union says reaching the 1,200-member milestone “reflects that the Lending Council is the key source for credit union lenders to connect with peers nationally, obtain information and resources quickly from other lenders, and to grow professionally. Lending is complex, and these resources are invaluable for anyone managing lending programs and strategies.”

Credit union lending leaders who are not yet members can join the Council at The Council’s 2014 National Conference is set for Nov. 2-5 at the Hilton Bayfront in San Diego, CA. Sessions will include a focus on consumer, mortgage and business lending topics, as well as strategic and leadership issues.

 For more information about all of CUNA’s councils, go to

Questions about this story? Contact Gary M. Stein: 503.350.2216,

Posted in Awards, CUNA, Federal.