CUAD Staff Experience Full Day at GAC
by CUAD Communications

According to CUNA, more than 5,300 credit union leaders – the largest group EVER - are in Washington, D.C., this week for the biggest credit union event of the year! CUAD staff had a full day of events yesterday. CUNA President/CEO Jim Nussle kicked off national conference – and shortly thereafter made the surprise announcement about a special guest speaker planned for today. The crowd was very excited to learn that Vice President Mike Pence will address the group this morning! (Thank you to everyone who responded to our “mystery guest” contest in yesterday’s Memo. The winner of the $50 gift card will be announced in the Memo tomorrow.)

Following opening ceremonies, each of our staff in attendance selected an educational breakout session for the afternoon.

Amy Kleinschmit was invited to a Compliance Networking Lunch, where compliance professionals from credit unions and leagues gathered to discuss hot topics. Subjects included raising the threshold on CTRs and closing accounts following suspicious activity, and the status of TCPA. In addition, some new topics were introduced, including an update on what to do when your credit union is being sued. Amy also attended the breakout session “Addressing Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion within the Credit Union Movement.” Moderated by Eric Hansing, VP of Multicultural and Corporate Strategy at CUNA Mutual Group, this was an assessment of how the credit union industry is currently addressing diversity, equity, and inclusion and the panelists covered gender, race and ethnicity, and financial inclusion.

Jay Kruse attended “CECL – Where We Are and Where Credit Unions Need to Be” where he reported it was “standing room only.” Those in the room included many of our Dakota credit union professionals. The group heard from panelists who provided a comprehensive overview of Current Expected Credit Losses (CECL), including where credit unions are now, how they got here, and what they need to do now to prepare. This breakout was moderated by Luke Martone, Senior Director - Advocacy & Counsel, CUNA.


Jeff Olson attended “The New Congress: Outlook and Opportunity” which he reported was also a full room. During this session, panelists provided their perspective on the first two months of the 116th Congress and divided government in Washington, offering bipartisan views on the legislative outlook for 2019 and what credit unions can expect. They also offered insights from their experiences working on Capitol Hill.


Lori Welder attended, “Bank Attacks and Their Different Forms” where a packed room of attendees learned that attacks are constantly changing and take many forms, and also about recent state fights and how credit unions were successfully able to mobilize and push back against these efforts. An emphasis was placed on working together as an industry on this issue, as opposed to banks, which are essentially competing against each other. This session was moderated by Mara Humphrey, Vice President, Governmental Affairs and Association Services, Minnesota Credit Union League.


An evening at the elegant Wegner Awards Dinner.

Several of our Dakota delegation attended the Wegner Awards dinner last evening. This awards ceremony celebrates the highest national honors in the credit union movement, gathering hundreds of credit union supporters from around the nation for an elegant and formal evening of celebration and inspiration. Andy Janning, CEO and Founder of Man on Fire Enterprises was the evening’s emcee.

Those attending from the Dakotas included: Floyd Rummel III (Northern Hills FCU); Roger and Chris Heacock (Black Hills FCU); Lori Welder and Jeff Olson (CUAD). 

Receiving awards last evening were:

  • Outstanding Individual Achievement: Diana R. Dykstra, president/CEO of the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues;
  • Outstanding Individual Achievement: Crystal Long, president/CEO of GECU; and
  • Outstanding Organization: Nusenda Credit Union Foundation.


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