The Pulse (09-10-2014)



The Pulse (09-10-2014)

September 10, 2014 ● Volume 03, Issue 36


The Pulse Archive

Credit Union News


 (Right to left)  Rep. John Ward (DFL),

Crow Wing Power Credit Union 
Vice President Diane Viehauser, 
Sen. Carrie Ruud (R), 
Mid-Minnesota Chief Financial Officer 
Doug Wolf, 
Mid-Minnesota President/CEO Chuck Albrecht, 
MnCUN President & CEO Mark Cummins

Lakes area CUs tout growth & financial education with legislators at MnCUN press event



Last Wednesday the Minnesota Credit Union Network (MnCUN) hosted a press event in Baxter to highlight growth and community involvement initiatives by area credit unions. Led by MnCUN President & CEO Mark Cummins, the event also featured Mid-Minnesota President/CEO Chuck Albrecht, Crow Wing Power Credit Union Vice President Diane Viehauser, and included two state legislators – Sen. Carrie Ruud (R) and Rep. John Ward (DFL).

The event was covered by Lakeland News in an evening television segment (watch video).

As one of four stops on MnCUN’s fall press tour, the event in Baxter was part of MnCUN’s overall public affairs strategy. These press events aim to inform and educate members of the media – and thereby Minnesota consumers – on the credit union difference. Also in conjunction with the press tour, MnCUN released an infographic titled “Minnesota Minded” – click here to view the infographic

Growth for Minnesota credit unions includes adding over 100,000 new members in two years and an increase in nearly every measurement of credit union strength. Minnesota Minded is designed to illustrate the significant trust that consumers have placed in Minnesota credit unions, which hold over $19 billion in assets and serve more 1.6 million Minnesotans at over 400 locations.  

“We have been seeing record growth in Minnesota over the past two years due to consumers’ trust in their local credit unions,” Cummins said. “Every day credit unions help create a brighter financial future for their members and their communities.”

Minnesota credit unions have led the way in financial literacy education in Minnesota including five branches in high schools, and in-school curriculum and education initiatives.

“Since 2008 we have had a partnership with Brainerd area schools and surrounding communities to provide financial education materials – without our logo – because we believe that when kids are better equipped for the real world, that is better for our communities,” Albrecht said.

Minnesota Minded showcases information which illustrates that credit unions are Minnesotans’ trusted, local financial partner and that credit unions are closely connected to the communities they serve.

“We were founded 15 years ago and have grown to 5,100 members with nearly $75 million in assets to serve the members of Crow Wing Power,” Crow Wing Power Credit Union Vice President Diane Viehauser said, recalling their decision to form the credit union as the ultimate way to help their members. Viehauser provides personal finance education through her volunteer efforts with Junior Achievement.

“I am thrilled to have the opportunity to contribute to the financial security and growth of this area,” she added.

“Credit unions do remarkably good work. In the finance arena, credit unions are known as ‘the good guys,’” said Rep. John Ward. “That’s why you’ve grown – credit unions are always giving back.”

Sen. Ruud agreed.

“Credit unions are a vital part of the community – and the education piece is so important,” she said, relaying a personal anecdote about her son and balancing his checkbook. She expressed appreciation for credit unions and their continual willingness to support community initiatives.

MnCUN will round out its fall press tour this month with an event in Rochester. August events engaged media in St. Paul and Moorhead.


CUNA announces president/CEO 

Yesterday, the Credit Union National Association (CUNA) announced the selection of their new President & CEO. Jim Nussle, a former nine-term congressman and director of the White House Office of Management and Budget for President George W. Bush, is the new president and CEO of CUNA, the chairman of the nation's largest trade group for credit unions announced today. 
Nussle will assume his new role in Washington for CUNA in the coming weeks. 
"After an exhaustive search, in which nearly 100 highly qualified candidates were considered, the CUNA board has unanimously accepted and certified the executive search committee's recommendation of Jim as the next chief executive of our association," said CUNA Chairman Dennis Pierce. 
Nussle, 54, served in the U.S. House from 1991-2007 as a Republican representative for Iowa's 1 st and 2 nd congressional districts. From 2001-06, he served as chairman of the House Budget Committee, a key panel which oversees the federal budget process, including review of all bills and resolutions on the budget. The panel also monitors agencies and programs funded outside of the budgetary process. 
In 2007, President Bush tapped him as the 36 th director of the Office of Management and Budget, the largest office within the Executive Office of the President of the United States (EOP). As OMB director, he was a member of the president's cabinet. He served through the conclusion of the Bush Administration in 2009. 
A member of the founding board of Growth Energy, a trade association of renewable energy companies and industry partners, he was named president and COO of the group in November 2010. He is the founder of The Nussle Group, a multi-disciplined public affairs and strategic consulting firm. 
"Jim's selection as our CEO follows a comprehensive search process that began earlier this year," said Susan Streifel, chair of the CUNA board's executive search committee and vice chair of the CUNA board. "We are thrilled to welcome Jim to CUNA and believe his experience at the highest levels of Congress and the federal executive branch, as well as his time in association leadership, positions him well to lead our association and represent our members," she said. 
Nussle noted his long admiration for the advocacy strength of the credit union movement. 
"I have witnessed first-hand the enthusiastic advocacy of the nation's nearly 7,000 credit unions and I look forward to working with them to ensure the credit union message and policy priorities are clearly understood in Washington and nationwide," he said. "At a time when trustworthiness is at a premium, the individuals who make up the more than 100 million memberships at credit unions trust their credit unions to provide them, their families and their small businesses with the financial services they expect and need." 

Minn. credit union business loans outpace national trend in Q2 2014

Final data reported by the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) in the second quarter of 2014 shows that Minnesota’s credit union business loans grew 14.4 percent over the last year, surpassing the national figure of 12 percent over the same period.

“Credit unions are more willing to make smaller loans that help businesses get off the ground,” said Minnesota Credit Union Network President & CEO Mark D. Cummins. “With these loans Minnesota credit unions are helping not only businesses but also families and communities grow.”

Minnesota credit union membership also grew during the second quarter, increasing by nearly 10,000 to reach a new high of 1,636,000. Overall, credit unions have experienced positive membership growth since 2011 and steady asset growth each year since 2007, as outlined below:


Minnesota Credit Union Membership and Assets


Members (in millions)

Assets (in billions)






















Q2 2014




Another positive sign for Minnesota credit unions was the continuing decline in delinquent loans reported in the second quarter. Loan delinquencies in the second quarter decreased by over 5 percent from the same period in 2013.

“Minnesota consumers and businesses are feeling more confident about their long-term financial picture,” said Cummins. “And they’re continuing to choose credit unions because they are trusted, locally-owned financial partners.”

A recent Chicago Booth/Kellogg School Financial Trust Index study also shows that consumers trust credit unions. "People trust more local than national banks and trust more credit unions than local banks," said study co-author and University of Chicago Booth School of Business Professor Luigi Zingales. “The more local an institution is, the more trusted it is."



Credit union professionals learn, engage at MnCUN Fall Leadership Conference

Last weekend, the Minnesota Credit Union Network held attend its annual Fall Leadership Conference. Hosting more than 200 credit union professionals and volunteers, this event featured industry experts providing insight and relevant information on top credit union issues. Session topics included:

  • The Future of Lending - Tim Lerew,Timothy Lerew Consulting
  • Balancing Strategy, Risk Management and Examiner Pressure –Pam Finch and Pete Crusius, c. myers
  • Economic Outlook for Minnesota's Credit Unions - Dwight Johnston, Dwight JohnstonEconomics
  • The Future of Payments - A Panel Discussion
  • Election 2014 Face Off
  • The Bleeding Edge and The Leading Edge: Using Innovation to Move Your Credit Union Ahead of the Curve - Jackson Hataway, Ph.D., Strategic Arts & Sciences

Fall Leadership Conference also featured an exhibit hall with 46 representatives showcasing 25 vendor companies that serve Minnesota credit unions. 

The 2015 Fall Leadership Conference will be held Sept. 11-13 at Maddens on Gull Lake in Brainerd. With questions about the Fall Leadership Conference, please contact MnCUN Director of Education Sue Groskreutz by email or at (651) 288-5521.



Minnesota CUs drench NCUA Supervisory Examiner with ice water

In response to a challenge made by MnCUN President & CEO Mark D. Cummins, the National Credit Union Administration’s (NCUA’s) Supervisory Examiner Justin Burleson allowed Minnesota credit union leaders to douse him with ice water at MnCUN’s Fall Leadership Conference last week. Burleson accepted the Ice Bucket Challenge, a social media phenomenon to raise awareness for Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS).

He invited CEOs to “dump away” in addition to donating to ALS and participating in the social media hype.

“Justin was a great sport, allowing our credit unions to take out a little ‘good natured aggression’ through this challenge,” Cummins said. “I think this is a direct reflection of the solid relationship that we at the Network have with the federal regulators who work in our state.”

As of Aug. 29, the ALS foundation topped $100 million in donations from people all over the globe who were moved to action by this summer’s Ice Bucket Challenge. As of August 29, the Association has received $100.9 million in donations compared to $2.8 million during the same time period last year (July 29 to August 29).

The ALS Association’s mission includes providing care services to assist people with Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and their families through a network of chapters working in communities across the nation and a global research program focused on the discovery of treatments and eventually a cure for the disease. In addition, The Association’s public policy efforts empower people to advance public policies in our nation’s Capital that respond to the needs of people with ALS.

Watch the video of Justin Burleson taking the Ice Bucket Challenge online. For more information about The ALS Association, visit the ALS Association website.



NCUA to host merger best practices webinar

Mergers are a consequence of today’s competitive financial industry. The National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) will host a free webinar, “Merger Best Practices,” on Wednesday, Sept. 17,  to address this issue.

Dominic Carullo, Economic Development Specialist with NCUA’s Office of Small Credit Union Initiatives, will be joined on the webinar by Bob Jones, Economic Development Specialist with the Office of Small Credit Union Initiatives and Marilyn Daigle, Supervision Analyst with NCUA’s Region 1 Office. Topics will include:

  • When to consider merging;
  • Merger structure and negotiations;
  • Cardinal characteristics of a credit union heading towards merger; and
  • How to maximize benefits for credit union members and staff.

Online registration for this free webinar is now open. Participants will also use this link to log into the webinar.

NCUA’s Office of Small Credit Union Initiatives fosters credit union development and the effective delivery of financial services for small credit unions, new credit unions, minority depository institutions and credit unions with a low-income designation. To learn more about this webinar, visit the NCUA online.


Credit Unions in the News

Follow the links on the stories below to read more about the outstanding programs, new initiatives and well-deserved recognition received by your peers recently. Got news of your own? Send stories, pitches, press releases and published articles to MnCUN Director of Communications Connie Kuhn.

Free Kidney Screening Event Coming to Minnesota Power

SPIRE’s charitable partnership with Timberwolves’ FastBreak Foundation wins social responsibility honor for second consecutive year


US Federal CU ranks high in the MN FoodShare


U.S. House and Senate return to Washington for brief legislative session


25 credit unions attain their Fair Share fundraising goal for 2014

MN Department of Commerce issues cyber-attack alert


CFPB issues warning to credit card issuers against deceptive and abusive practices


Out for Comment


FHFA proposes revisions to FHLB membership requirements


If this describes you, then you are invited to join The Crew. This group 
If this describes you, then you are invited to join The Crew. This group 

Minnesota Credit Union Network
555 Wabasha Street N, Suite 200
St. Paul, MN 55102

(651) 288-5170
(800) 477-1034