In recognition of his leadership roles in various organizations and tireless commitment to the credit union philosophy, the National Credit Union Foundation (NCUF) is pleased to announce Hubert H. Hoosman, Jr., President and CEO of Vantage Credit Union in Bridgeton, Mo., as the winner of the 2013 Herb Wegner Memorial Award for Individual Achievement.
This will be one of three Herb Wegner Memorial Awards presented at a special dinner hosted by NCUF at the Grand Hyatt Washington on February 25, 2013, which is Monday night of the Credit Union National Association’s 2013 Governmental Affairs Conference. Online registration for dinner tickets will be available later this year on the NCUF website (www.ncuf.coop).
“Hubert Hoosman’s dedication to moving the credit union world forward is also visible in all of the local, regional, national and international endeavors in which he has been involved,” said NCUF Awards & Recognition Committee Chairman Bob Schumacher. “He is truly a renaissance credit union leader and deserving of the 2013 Herb Wegner Memorial Award for Individual Achievement.”
Helping Take Vantage CU to New Heights
A native of East St. Louis, Ill., Hoosman graduated from high school with a full basketball scholarship from the University of Missouri- St. Louis, and in 1982, he landed his first job as a teller for Educational Employees Credit Union (the credit union changed its name to Vantage Credit Union in 2002). Over the past thirty years, Hoosman has held several management positions while climbing the credit union ladder, including Loan Department Manager, Branch Manager, Vice President of Operations, Executive Vice President, and President/CEO of the credit union since 1994.
When Hoosman started his career at the credit union in 1982, the asset size of the credit union was $34 million. Today, Vantage Credit Union is the fourth largest credit union in Missouri, with assets approaching $700 million.
Making an Impact in the Community
Because of the high level of poverty that still exists in East St. Louis, Hoosman has been constantly attentive to the programs for East St. Louis that have had his credit union’s support.
“The use of financial education and providing affordable financial services and products to the community is just one way to rid the East St. Louis area of these problems,” said Michael Ray, Director for Corporate Relations at Congressional Federal Credit Union. “Taking ownership of one’s life and being responsible is one of many ways to beat back poverty. Hubert has continually used the credit union cooperative principles to accomplish this objective.”
“Hubert championed the building of a full service Vantage Credit Union branch in the predominantly underserved city of East St. Louis,” said Randal T. Yeck, Executive Vice President at Vantage Credit Union. “This branch has brought great value to the city and the members in that community continue to refer their friends and family to Vantage for the high level of service that is provided.”
Creating Opportunities for Youth & Young Adults
In addition to numerous other endeavors in area schools, Hoosman also led the efforts to partner with East St. Louis High School officials in providing job opportunities. Students from select schools are afforded job related work experience while acquiring financial education. The program has been extended to North County Technical High School where employees of Vantage CU participate with students in mock job interview exercises, providing interviewing skills and job leads for students seeking employment after high school graduation. Additionally, Hoosman has helped many students from the nearby University of Missouri- St. Louis by offering them internships at Vantage Credit Union. He was also able to offer full summer internships for college students through the African American Credit Union Coalition (AACUC) “Reaching Toward the Future” program. Some have gone on to work full time in credit unions.
“Hubert hired me to be the Program Director for the AACUC ‘Reaching Toward the Future’ program when he was Vice Chairman of the organization,” said C. Renée Sattiewhite, President/CEO of Sattiewhite Training Productions, Inc. “Through his vision and leadership, the program is still one of the initiatives that continues to be a AACUC mainstay. He raised the money to start and sustain the program for its first three years and worked tirelessly to garner financial support from vendors, trade associations, credit unions and colleges and universities around the country.”
Hoosman has been honored as a positive role model for minority youths, receiving the St. Louis Sentinel’s “Yes We Can” award and was also recognized by the St. Louis Business Journal as one of the most influential minority business leaders in 2006.
Leading the CU Charge to Honor a National Hero
Hoosman took the lead nationally with credit unions in helping to recognize Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. by raising funds for a national monument which now stands in Washington, D.C. In 2006, Hoosman’s own credit union, Vantage Credit Union, donated the first $50,000 dollars. Hoosman then led the charge in organizing credit unions across the country to raise funds for the memorial. Working with AACUC, Hoosman was able to secure the support of 134 credit unions, 13 credit union leagues, 3 corporate credit unions, industry trade associations, and 6 credit union service organizations across America.
“The African-American Credit Union Coalition is extremely proud of his unwavering commitment for the Martin Luther King, Jr. monument initiative,” said Sheilah Montgomery, Chair of AACUC and President/CEO of Credit Union of Atlanta. “His influence and untiring dedication within the credit union movement helped to facilitate AACUC being the conduit for getting credit unions throughout the country to contribute over $1.3 million dollars to the monument fund.”
Leading Locally, Nationally & Internationally
Hubert Hoosman has served in several capacities in various organizations, such as AACUC (as one of the original founders and board treasurer), Chairman of the Missouri Credit Union Association from 2004 through 2006, the Consumer Federation of America, a member of the World Leadership Committee for the World Council of Credit Unions (WOCCU), a member of the Filene Research Institute Advisory Committee, and as a member of the capitalization committee for the National Federation of Community Development Credit Unions. Hoosman also served on the board of the National Credit Union Foundation.
Hoosman, along with other members of AACUC, has been a longtime supporter of America’s Credit Union Museum and was instrumental in collecting and providing important data about African-American involvement in the development of credit unions in this country.
Hoosman has also worked with WOCCU in the Caribbean, Kenya, Australia, Rwanda, Gambia and Swaziland. Vantage Credit Union continues to host many groups from Africa in support of the WOCCU International Development Education Program. Following the hosting, Hoosman often becomes a mentor for the individuals.
“Hubert stood tall in assisting with the early development of the new credit union movement in South Africa,” said Pete Crear, former President/CEO of WOCCU. “When the United States Agency for International Development reduced funding to South Africa for credit union development, it was Hubert who worked tirelessly to reinstate it.”
“Hubert is recognized internationally, nationally, and locally for his untiring commitment to the credit union movement and to the philosophy of ‘People Helping People,’” noted Jerry R. Eichholz, Chairman of Vantage Credit Union.
About the Herb Wegner Memorial Awards:
The awards are named in honor of the late Credit Union National Association CEO Herb Wegner, whose tireless dedication, innovative ideas and deeds truly revolutionized the ways that credit unions serve their communities. The awards that bear Wegner’s name recognize his spirit of “innovative, creative, risk-taking” leadership. View past award recipients here.
About the National Credit Union Foundation (ncuf.coop):
The National Credit Union Foundation is the US credit union movement’s primary national philanthropic program provider, fundraiser and grant-maker. Through NCUF grants and programs, credit unions provide widespread financial education, create greater access to affordable financial services, and empower more consumers to save, build assets, and own homes.
NCUF is funded primarily by investments in the award-winning Community Investment Fund (CIF) and by generous Supporters led by the Credit Union National Association and CUNA Mutual Group. All NCUF donors provide support that empowers NCUF and state credit union foundations to make a real impact in the credit union community.
The National Credit Union Foundation is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt charitable organization. NCUF continues to earn the Better Business Bureau seal of approval as an “Accredited Charity” for meeting all 20 BBB Wise Giving Alliance Standards for national charities.