Announcing the 2017 YP Leads!


To facilitate greater collaboration among state groups of young credit union leaders, your Association has joined forces with YCUP Portland & SW Washington, YCUP Greater Seattle Area, and Climb Idaho to launch a region-wide leadership community of young credit union professionals at MAXX 2017: the Northwest Young Professionals Network.

This micro-community presents a first-time opportunity for talented young leaders from across the Northwest to unite their efforts to advance the Credit Union Movement. Your Association is thrilled to announce that 18 bright young credit union professionals — six from each state — have been selected through a highly competitive application process to participate in the new program as YP Leads.

The YP Leads will attend MAXX 2017, working to define the direction for this new young professional leadership community while connecting with colleagues and discovering new learning opportunities.

“It is clear we have the talent to lead the industry right here in our region, and it is our responsibility to cultivate that talent by providing and fostering opportunities like these for our young professionals — those who will advance our industry’s future,” said Troy Stang, President and CEO of the Northwest Credit Union Association.

The program’s YP Champions — leaders of young professional groups throughout the Northwest and the judges who selected the YP Leads for this program — will work closely with the YP Leads to ensure they have a successful experience at MAXX and beyond.

“The Credit Union Movement is strong in the Northwest, and the YP Leads program provides an opportunity to make it even stronger by engaging and activating an integral group of credit union employees,” said Ed Bedell, YP Champion and Business Development Officer at Spokane Federal Credit Union. “During the selection and judging process, there was one consistent characteristic that stood out among all applicants: the passion that each of them displayed for helping others through the Credit Union Movement. My hope is that this program will inspire others to take a more active role in the movement.”

Nick Fugal, YP Champion and Chief Financial Officer at Clarity Credit Union, echoed this hope for the movement’s growth through the program. “If these 18 YP Leads are any indication of the future of the Credit Union Movement in the Northwest, we are in great hands!” he said. “I truly believe that, after taking part in YP Leads, these outstanding young credit union professionals will become leaders with their local YP programs and the Credit Union Movement overall. This will lead to increased engagement and passion among other credit union employees, which will permeate to the members and help fuel the fire for credit union growth in the Northwest.”

The Champions also are eager to witness the development of more opportunities for young professionals to grow as ambassadors for the credit union difference. “I’m excited to see the Association play a critical role in bringing attention to the importance of attracting and engaging young professionals in the Northwest,” said YP Champion Steve Pagenstecher, VP Member Experience at Point West Credit Union. “The passion and diverse set of skills of this year’s YP Leads highlights the incredible opportunity for these candidates and our Credit Union Movement.”

“I’m thrilled to see the value being placed on young professionals in the Credit Union Movement,” explained Alex Johnson, YP Champion and Community Relations Officer at Sound Credit Union. “It’s incredible to see a group that is excited to make an impact on credit unions in Northwest and our communities.”

Congratulations to the Northwest Young Professionals Network’s 2017 YP Leads:

  • Jennifer Ash, Market Research and Consumer Advocate Administrator, Horizon CU
  • Nikie Bauer, Branch Supervisor, Clarity CU
  • Katie Bledsoe, Loan Officer 1, Simplot Employees CU
  • Sarah Buck, Training Coordinator and Marketing Assistant, USAgencies
  • Morgan Cole, Public Relations Specialist, Inspirus CU
  • Linda Crane, Executive Administrative Assistant, Global CU
  • Sam Jensen, Lead Video Financial Solutions Partner, Pioneer FCU
  • John Lindsay, Fraud Investigator & BSA Compliance Associate, SELCO
  • Caitlin Lyon, Marketing Coordinator-Administration, Rogue CU
  • Toni Mathews Executive Assistant, Trailhead CU
  • Valentin Palomino, Assistant Branch Manager, Numerica CU
  • Mallory Randazzo, Training and Development Specialist, Verity CU
  • Karen Rowe, Administrative Assistant, Beehive FCU
  • Rebekah Schroeter, Member Consultant, Verity CU
  • Symantha Sermino, Member Business Services Assistant, Northwest Community CU
  • Titan Sweeten, Consumer Lending Agent, Beehive FCU
  • Mary Vasquez, Community Advocate, Point West CU
  • Alisha Watson, Community Relationship Specialist, P1FCU

Click here to learn more about the program and our YP Leads and Champions.

For more information about how to become involved with the Northwest Young Professionals Network, contact NWCUA’s Community Manager Carmen Vigil at or at 206.340.4817.

Posted in Around the NW.