Get Ready to “Crash” the 2022 CUNA GAC!
November 9, 2021
Applications are now being accepted for the Cooperative Trust’s “Crash the GAC” program, offering young credit union professionals across the country an invaluable and career-changing opportunity.
Known as the premier credit union advocacy event of the year, the CUNA Governmental Affairs conference brings together thousands of credit union champions to our nation’s capital for a week of connecting with peers, advancing the credit union mission, and advocating for the more than 120 million members credit unions serve in the U.S.
Selected through a highly competitive process, more than 50 Crashers chosen from each state receive free conference registration to the event, which includes attendance at keynote and breakout conference sessions, congressional meetings, and Crasher sessions with important leaders in the Credit Union Movement.
This year’s conference will take place Feb. 26-March 3 in Washington, D.C. Prospective Crashers have until Dec. 3 to submit their applications.
Anthem spoke with a few Northwest Crashers from past years on how the program impacted their career — and their responses say it all.
“The impact the GAC has had on my professional career at Rogue Credit Union cannot be overstated,” said Brittney Schweizer-Wylie, Project Manager at Rogue Credit Union and 2019 GAC Crasher. “The education I was afforded as a part of the Crasher program — the insight into emerging fintech and how credit unions are not just keeping up, but pioneering in some instances, how various proposed pieces of legislation would affect our industry, crash courses in diversity, equity, and inclusion — I leverage this body of knowledge in every interaction I make as an advocate for the Credit Union Movement, be it with chapter-mates, members, or prospective members.”
Schweizer-Wylie explained that she particularly appreciated the opportunity to network with other young credit union professionals across the nation, and the connections during that special week have proven invaluable in the years since.
“I have a cohort across the country I can pose questions to as I run into challenges with various projects, products, processes, etc. In true cooperative fashion, we pool our knowledge and in that way, we are strengthening not just our individual credit unions, but the industry as a whole.”
Mere weeks before the first COVID-19 lockdowns in March 2020, Shawn Ohki joined three other Crashers from the Northwest in Washington, D.C., which he said was a “dream come true.”
“I had the opportunity to network with the trailblazers of the Credit Union Movement and learn how their careers started and what life lessons shaped their vision,” he told Anthem upon his return from the conference. “It was great to see how invested they were in the younger generation.”
The experience ignited his commitment to becoming more involved in credit union advocacy, he said.
“We win when we support and empower each other, and I’m excited to further that message and the Credit Union Difference alongside my peers.”
Hear what all five 2021 Northwest Crashers had to say about their experiences here.
Further amplifying their involvement in the Northwest, many GAC Crashers also become YP Leads, a growing cohort of young professionals in the region who serve as ambassadors for the Movement and earn complimentary registration to NWCUA’s annual MAXX Convention and Trade Show.