The Pulse (11-21-2017)

Volume 6, Issue 46

The Pulse Archive


Rothman Steps Down, Jessica Looman Appointed Commerce Commissioner

On Friday, Minnesota Department of Commerce Commissioner Mike Rothman announced he would be stepping down from his position. That same day, Governor Mark Dayton appointed Jessica Looman to serve as Commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Commerce.


Looman has served as deputy commissioner for the Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry since December 2014. She is responsible for the strategic coordination of the DLI divisions to meet the agency's objective of ensuring equitable, healthy and safe work and living environments for Minnesota. As Commerce Commissioner, Looman will prioritize fair treatment of Minnesotans, advancing the state’s clean energy economy, and ensuring the effective regulation and licensing of over 20 industries under the Department’s purview.


“The Minnesota Credit Union Network has built a strong working relationship with Mike Rothman and the Department of Commerce. We appreciate his commitment to financial literacy and security,” said MnCUN President & CEO Mark Cummins. “We thank Mr. Rothman for his years of dedication and look forward to working with Commissioner Looman.”


Over the years, MnCUN has partnered with Mike Rothman on programs including Financial Capability Month, youth financial literacy, and elder financial abuse prevention and education.


Commissioner Rothman, who was appointed to serve as Commerce Commissioner in January 2011, concluded his service at the Commerce Department effective Friday, Nov. 17.



Minnesota Credit Union Professionals Become Certified CU Development Educators (CUDEs)

Forty-seven credit union professionals became Credit Union Development Educators (CUDEs) after being guided by dedicated program facilitators and mentors through the intensive Credit Union Development Education (DE) Training from the National Credit Union Foundation (the Foundation). Among the graduates were Minnesota Credit Union Network Vice President of Communications and Engagement Andrea Molnau and Wings Financial Credit Union Education & Youth Programs Manager Trysh Olson. The DE training was held Nov. 1 through 8, 2017 at the Lowell Center in Madison, Wis.


The mission of the Credit Union Development Education (DE) program is to promote credit unions’ social responsibility and domestic and international development through interactive adult education and professional networking. By linking credit unions’ past and present, the DE program brings renewed relevance to credit unions’ seven cooperative principles and the philosophy of “People Helping People.”


Since 1982, more than 1,800 credit union advocates from over 35 countries have graduated from DE Training to become Credit Union Development Educators (CUDEs).  Once they earn their CUDE designation, people return to their jobs with a sense of personal enrichment and renewed energy to share what they have learned.  This growing corps of credit union advocates devotes professional and volunteer time to spreading the credit union message to audiences throughout the country. For more information on the DE program, visit under “How We Help”.


More information and 2018 DE Training dates can be found on the National Credit Union Foundation website.





GREAT Action Alert: Credit Union-Specific Regulatory Relief Included in Senate Bill




NCUA Reorganization


Fraud Alert: Vehicle Loan Scam


View all Regulatory Compliance news stories


Retirement Planning: Credit Unions Can Lead by Example

By Jennifer Norr CUNA Mutual Retirement Solutions vice president of Marketing and Strategy


“You need to save for retirement.”


How many times have you heard that, or said that or read that?


Retirement planning is one of those omnipresent topics in our industry, precisely because it is so important. National Retirement Security Week (Oct. 15 – 21) was a timely reminder that smart, long-term retirement plans are essential to ensuring credit union members achieve financial security.


But what about those other important people in the credit union movement: us – credit union employees, partners and advocates? We require retirement planning support as much as anyone, and current statistics indicate that we are struggling.


As the retirement field continues to shift from employer-sponsored pensions to private 401(k) plans, the burden increasingly lies with individuals to have the knowledge, discipline and foresight to save enough for their golden years.


We’ve all heard the stats: 10,000 baby boomers are retiring every day. They’re looking at about 20 years of retired bliss, but they probably don’t have the funds to cover it. In fact, 38 percent of Americans don’t save anything for retirement, while 63 percent of retirees are dependent on Social Security, friends, relatives or charity1.


Not exactly the retirement we all dream about.


Consider the sobering statistic that nearly half of all Americans would struggle to pay a $400 emergency expense2. This means people you work with, sit next to and have lunch with on a daily basis are facing real financial hardship. It’s an uncomfortable irony that we spend our workdays focused on building members’ financial wellness, but can so easily overlook the financial health needs of our very own friends and coworkers.


As credit union leaders, we have a responsibility to help our employees take positive, meaningful steps toward financial success.


The first step is education. The National Credit Union Foundation’s Retirement Fair is one way to illuminate the financial realities of life-after-work for your employees.


Then, once we’ve engaged our employees in the retirement conversation, we need to keep them there. Use whatever tools and resources are available to inspire continued retirement planning and saving.


At CUNA Mutual Group, we encourage our employees and credit union employees on our retirement programs to use BenefitsForYou – a website designed to make retirement planning easy. It puts all your 401(k) information and documents into one place, alongside educational resources and a simple, adjustable graph that shows whether you’re on track to retire at your target age, with your target replacement income. You can easily add 401(k)s from previous employers, pension plans, and spouse benefits.


We do this because helping our employees build financial security is not just the smart thing to do; it’s the right thing. It’s a win-win. Employees that are more certain of their financial future will be more productive, have higher work satisfaction and deliver increased customer service. In fact, employees with financial stress are five times more likely (48% vs. 10%) to be distracted at work, and twice as likely to miss work because of personal financial issues (16% vs 8%)3.


But more importantly, as a proud member of the credit union movement, we support our employees in building their own financial security because we take seriously our core principle of putting people first.


Ultimately, we must always work to strengthen the financial health of our members and our communities – and that should start with our employees. 


CUNA Mutual Group is a MnCUN Strategic Partner. For more information about CUNA Mutual Group, contact Network Service Corporation and TruLync Chief Operations Officer John Ferstl by email or at (651) 288-5505.




  1. Statistic Brain, Retirement Statistics, Jan. 2016.
  2. The Washington Post, The Shocking Number of Americans who Can’t Cover a $400 Expense, May, 2016.
  3. PWC, Special Report: Financial Stress and the Bottom Line, 2017.

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

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