News & Notes: Here’s What’s Happening Around the Northwest

NW Plus Credit Union Gives $8,000 in Scholarships

NW Plus CU established a scholarship program in 1993 to honor those members that were pursuing a higher education regardless of age or need.  Cathy Henry, AVP  Marketing, said, “Every year we are amazed at what our membership is doing and all that they are striving for. The Credit Union continually sees growth in our membership and our scholarship program is a way for us to give back to our communities and help our members with their higher education goals.”

NW Plus CU is pleased to announce the recipients of its 2015 Scholarships.

  • $2,000 to Dana Arenz of Marysville, WA.  She plans on pursuing a medical career ultimately obtaining her OB/GYN credentials.
  • $2,000 to Sarah Kaye of Lake Stevens, WA.  She is studying Aerospace Engineering at Cal Poly.
  • $1,000 to Jeriah Bankson of Stanwood, WA.  She plans on becoming an Astrophysicist.
  • $1,000 to Riley Flynn of Bow, WA.   He plans on obtaining a degree in Business Management and Administration.
  • $750 to Danielle Fortin of Stanwood, WA.    She plans on studying molecular biology.
  • $750 to Nichole Edwards of Burlington, WA.  She plans to become an Environmental Engineer.
  • $500 to Caitlin Lingrey of Camano Island, WA.  She plans on studying Forensic Science.

Oregon State Credit Union names Rachel Pross as Assistant Vice President for Risk Management

Credit union executive Rachel Pross has accepted the position of Assistant Vice President for Risk Management at Oregon State Credit Union, it was announced recently by President/Chief Executive Officer Richard Hein.

Pross comes to Oregon State Credit Union from Northwest Community Credit Union where she has served as the Director of Compliance and Legislative Affairs since 2012. Previous to her move to Oregon, she led Tucson Healthcare Affiliates Federal Credit Union in Tucson, Arizona as President and Chief Executive Officer for two years. She brings significant experience in credit union operations, lending, regulatory compliance, risk management and governmental affairs.  Pross is a graduate with honors of the Western Credit Union National Association (CUNA) Management School. Overall, she has 18 years of financial industry experience.

Pross’ selection is the beginning of a planned transition for Oregon State Credit Union’s Audit and Compliance operation. Hein explained, “Our Audit and Compliance area is one of the top programs nationally. This area is significantly important to us in our regulatory environment.  The ability to bring someone with Rachel’s experience, background and fit for our culture will be invaluable to our continued success in servicing our members now and in the future.”

Pross has been President of the Willamette Chapter of Credit Unions for the past two years and serves on the Northwest Credit Union Association’s (NWCUA) Oregon Governmental Affairs Committee and Regulatory Advisory Subcommittee. Pross is also a regular blog contributor to Huffington Post. She is an accomplished musician having played Principal Second Violin for the Riverside Chamber Symphony in Eugene.  

Of her move to Oregon State Credit Union, Pross said, “Since moving to Oregon three years ago, I have greatly admired Oregon State Credit Union’s outstanding political advocacy and commitment to unsurpassed member service. The culture at Oregon State Credit Union is one in which I know I’ll thrive, and I couldn’t be happier to now be a part of this team.”

BECU Promotes Melanie Walsh to Senior Vice President of Human Resources

BECU announced today that Melanie Walsh has been promoted to Senior Vice President of Human Resources.  In her new role, Melanie is also a member of the credit union’s Executive Management Team (EMT). 

Melanie started with BECU 26 years ago and has gained broad experience leading several areas of the credit union including the Everett Financial Center, Contact Center, branch network and deposit operations.

In her role Melanie will lead the Human Resource division and all people programs for the credit union.  “BECU’s employees are our “secret sauce” in delivering a remarkable experience to our members which is vital to our success.” said Benson Porter, BECU President and CEO.  “Melanie has a passion for unlocking human potential through a meaningful combination of people, technology, and process that will ensure we continue to attract and retain the employees to deliver on our member experience promise.”  

Prior to this promotion, Melanie was the Vice President of BECU’s Servicing, Retail, and Contact Centers. Since joining BECU in 1989 Melanie has held the position as Vice President of Member Care where she was responsible for strategy development and tactical deployment of Call Center services and support functions as well as Director of Member Service Support where she was responsible for support and development of all frontline personnel.

Melanie earned her Bachelor’s degree in Business Management from the University of Phoenix. 

Questions about this story? Contact James Pearson: 206.340.4790,

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