Mt. Hood Chapter Kicks Off New Era

Steve Pagenstecher sits at his computer, refreshing his browser to see if any new attendees have signed up for the upcoming compliance panel event. With only a week and change to go, the count sits at ten – well short of the 25-30 attendees the chapter is hoping for. Still, he’s optimistic they’ll get there.

“Outside of the annual Turkey Shoot, this is the first event we’ve put on since 2013,” says Steve, recently named president of the Mt. Hood Chapter of Credit Unions (he also serves as vice president of member experience at Point West Credit Union). “When you’re off the radar for that long, people stop paying attention. Now we need to get it back.”

The Mt. Hood Chapter has gone through a transformation since the end of 2014, when seven of the nine sitting board members resigned or moved on en masse, leaving only Steve and Mitch Beardsley, the chapter secretary and administrative assistant at Point West. These two remained committed to seeing the chapter survive. Since then, the chapter has been reborn, with the new board hard at work at making the Mt. Hood Chapter relevant once again.

Three new board members joined Steve and Mitch to bring the chapter back to life. “I decided to get involved with the Chapter because I saw a fantastic opportunity to network with other credit union professionals and to help organize and facilitate meaningful and impactful events,” said Tiffany Pillars, accounting/compliance specialist at Providence FCU, who joined the chapter board in late 2014. “As a young professional I’m always looking for new learning opportunities; so being able to suggest topics and ideas for our future events that appeal to those who hold similar aspirations in exciting!”

In addition, the chapter added board members Cliff Witherspoon, lending manager at Clackamas FCU, and Dianne Snyder, business development specialist at Castparts Employees FCU, to round out the 2015 chapter board.

The board recently gathered for a strategic planning session facilitated by Kasey Rockwell, director of credit union relations for USAgencies CU, to rewrite the chapter’s bylaws, brainstorm upcoming events and set goals for the remainder of 2015. Behind the scenes, the chapter has been building its communications and infrastructure – it recently created a Facebook page and a Mailchimp account to manage its emails. It also created an Eventbrite account to track RSVPs and take payments online, and it invested in a Square payment reader and account to take credit card payments directly at events.

“We really wanted to think through a lot of the logistics before rushing back into events,” said Steve. “We’re trying to build something that has a strong foundation that will ensure a bright future for the chapter well after the current board is gone.”

The Mt. Hood Chapter’s first event, a “hot topic” compliance panel covering everything from mortgage disclosures and EMV to credit risk management and marijuana-related businesses, is on Thursday, May 21 at 6 pm in the Parson’s Room of McMenamin’s Kennedy School. For more information, visit the chapter’s Facebook page or click here to register now. 

Questions about this story? Contact James Pearson: 206.340.4790,

Posted in Events.