The President's Perspective
by Jeff Olson

Greetings and welcome to the official start of summer!

I am writing this week’s blog while prepping for a little summer vacation. I wish I could say I’m going on a two week excursion filled with relaxation and fun adventures, however, truth be told, I’m doing just the opposite. I am spending my time off this week packing and moving to a new home. While moving is certainly exciting, it is NOT relaxing. Wish me luck.

I hope you all heard the good news from CUNA and Jim Nussle last week during America’s Credit Union Conference that the Dakotas are on deck for our official “Open Your Eyes” awareness campaign launch in July. From our perspective, now is the perfect time to enhance our consumer consideration potential in North Dakota, while building on the momentum of the growth in South Dakota. I’m pleased to share that 75% of our affiliated Dakota credit unions are “all-in” and contributing to the awareness initiative, showing that credit unions in the Dakotas strongly believe in this effort. This campaign aims to grow membership, particularly among millennials and people between the ages of 35 and 54 who have children. That’s important because research shows, the latter group makes most of the financial decisions in the family – including where they do their banking.

To date, the campaign is live in four states: Minnesota, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Michigan. So far, the digital campaign has yielded 76 million impressions with the promotional video viewed to 100% completion by 8.4 million consumers! We are very excited about the campaign here, and we hope you are too. If you have any questions about the campaign resources that are available, don’t hesitate to contact Lori Welder, our Director of Communications.

Photo right: “Open Your Eyes” group selfie with Jim Nussle at ACUC in Orlando.

Congratulations and best wishes to Mechelle Johnson!

This Friday, East River Federal Credit Union will celebrate Mechelle’s 24 years of service and leadership. She is retiring from her role as President/CEO of East River FCU and she is moving to Florida! To honor her many years of dedicated service, the credit union will be hosting an open house for Mechelle at their location in Madison this Friday, June 28th, from 3:00 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. We all wish her the best of luck as she makes this transition.

NCUA Board to delay Risk Based Capital Rule by two years.

Last week during their monthly meeting, the NCUA Board announced a proposal to delay implementation of its risk-based capital rule by two years, something we have been pushing for some time. Also at the meeting, the NCUA announced they have appointed Johnny Davis Jr. as Special Advisor to the Chairman for Cybersecurity. In this role, Mr. Davis will attend all interagency meetings pertaining to cybersecurity.

Attention small CUs $100M and under!  

As a reminder, the date has been moved for the Small Credit Union CEO Roundtable. It will be held on September 5th in Fargo – so please be sure to note that small change. Small, community based credit unions and small SEG credit unions are the lifeblood of our movement here – especially in many of our rural markets in the Dakotas. The CUAD Small Credit Union Roundtable is a one-day event that is designed to educate and provide small credit union CEOs the tools and resources to grow and sustain their relevance. This is a great opportunity to share, network and have open dialogue with other small CU executives. We’ll have more details on this event in the Memo once registration opens, but for now, don’t forget to save the date September 5th. Hotel and event information is available here.

Foundation golf fundraiser coming soon!

I hope you have included our annual Credit Union Foundation of the Dakotas (CUFD) Golf Scramble in your summer plans. The event will be held on Friday, August 16th at the Jamestown Country Club in Jamestown, ND. All proceeds raised from this event go directly to the CUFD to be used for high school and college scholarships, grants for financial literacy, and to Dakota charities such as Habitat for Humanity, local Red Cross organizations, and more. While reaching out to the community in these ways, we create more awareness of Dakota credit unions as a better financial services option for consumers. Please consider adding this to your summer schedule. More information and registration can be found here.

Last but not least…

Each year, credit union professionals from North Dakota and South Dakota gather to discuss and learn from each other on a variety of topics at our CU Professionals Roundtable. This event is open to all credit union professionals regardless of title, and it’s a great opportunity to expand your network and bounce ideas and issues around a group of your peers. Amy Kleinschmit leads this meeting, feel free to contact her with any questions. Registration and more details can be found here.

Well, I’m off to pack and unpack boxes. Have a great week!




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