DE Profiles & Testimonials

DE Profiles

DE Training has changed people's lives in a variety of ways. See below for stories on how some CUDE's professional and personal lives have changed since attending DE:

DE Testimonials

What is Credit Union Development Education (DE) Training? Over the years, we've collected hundreds of testimonials and rave reviews from attendees of this unique and transformative training. A sampling is below:

"DE was truly a life changing experience for me. The knowledge that I have taken away from this training has empowered me to do anything I can dream of. I have returned to my Credit Union completely renewed and full of passion for my Credit Union and the entire Credit Union Movement. I am honored to have been a part of this training and hope all Credit Union employees can get to this training in their CU career."
Stephanie Dreiling, CUDE 2017
Education Director
Heartland Credit Union

“DE Training was one of the most impactful learning experiences I’ve ever participated in. While a relative newcomer to the credit union world, I felt I had a reasonably good understanding of their mission and purpose, as well as their strong social agenda. Clearly, that was not the case. I have been educated, enlightened, and evangelized by this movement. Working in an industry where people helping people is such a core value, makes me feel my job is important and makes a difference every day.”

Lisa Sutton, CUDE 2017
SVP Human Resources

“Having advocated for credit unions at the League level for over 17 years, educating policy makers on how credit unions benefit their members and communities, and having built a pretty decent level of knowledge on issues facing credit unions, I thought DE Training would be a culmination. It is actually a whole new beginning for me – one I feel deeply privileged to be starting.”

Mark Minickiello, CUDE 2017
Vice President of Community Development
Harborstone Credit Union

“DE Training didn’t just give me information on credit union philosophy and principles, it provided me with experiences that will last a lifetime! DE Training had a powerful impact that fueled an even a bigger fire in me to make a difference. DE training gives us purpose and now I’m an advocate of the credit union movement forever.”

Kim Cromer, CUDE 2017
Director of Prepaid Services

"DE was a transformative experience. I have a new appreciation and mission for how my credit union needs to interact and serve within the communities it resides."

Matthew Walusis, CUDE 2017
Cheyenne Financial Services Manager

"The DE Program wasn’t a training - it was a life experience. I walked away with a heartfelt understanding of who we are as a movement, and profound respect for what it took to get us where we are today. I’m energized and ready to do all I can to help better the lives of others.”

Julia Sohn, CUDE 2016
Vice President of Human Resources
SchoolsFirst Federal Credit Union

“DE Training helps you bridge the gap between who you are and who you dream of being.”

Cindy Beauregard, CUDE 2016
Heart of LA FCU

"DE Training was truly one of the most eye opening experiences of my life.In addition, coming home from DE, my heart was completely full; full of passion for the credit union movement, full of gratefulness for all the things I take for granted each day, and full of love for not only my family, but for all the individuals I met during my time there. DE helped me realize that you don’t have to set out to change the world, but instead, just start one step at a time, to change someone’s life.”

Katie Dressler, CUDE 2016
Vice President of Communications/Awareness
CU Association of the Dakotas

“DE Training reignited my devotion to the credit union philosophy, and profoundly impacted me on a personal level. I would highly recommend DE Training to credit union managers, executives, directors, and yes, even skeptical CFOs.  I promise, DE Training will change your life.”

Jim Ladner, CUDE 2016
Resource One Credit Union

“DE Training was life altering. I was asked before I went, ‘Are you going to drink the Kool-Aid?’ When I got there I found out there is no Kool-Aid, only caring people who believe in a movement that seeks to lift people up. What better calling is there? Thank you for fanning the flames of possibility and challenging us to do better with what we've got.”

Tom Olney, CUDE 2016
VP Learning Process & Architecture

“I’ve worked in credit unions for over 15 years, but this experience truly changed my perspective on our role. My empathy for what our members experience has grown, and I feel renewed to find ways in which I can make a difference!  Absolutely one of the best training experiences of my career!”

Leah Friedenberg, CUDE 2016
Director of Payment Services
Pima FCU

“Before DE I knew I was working in a great industry.  With 30 years of credit union experience, I didn't think I could learn anymore about credit unions.  After 'walking the talk' at DE Training, I know I'm part of a powerful, and amazing movement.  CUDE is by far the most important, and gratifying, credential I've ever achieved.”

Tracy Thornburg, CUDE 2016
Director of Compliance
Montana Credit Union Network

“DE was one of the most amazing experiences of my life!  I have been renewed and re-energized, ready to incorporate the founding principles into my credit union and my personal life.  I have never been more proud or excited to be part of the credit union movement!”

Jeannie Fye, CUDE 2016

“I feel like I've learned more in one week of training than I learned in my entire 35-year career.”

Crystal Long, CUDE 2015

"DE was not a training, nor a conference, nor anything I've experienced before.  It was a recharging, invigorating, in depth experience that challenged the heart, mind and soul of the passion of credit union existence - we all need DE!"

Shannon Duran, CUDE 2015
Senior Vice President/COO
PBC Credit Union

"DE Training has been a life-changing experience for me. It has re-kindled a passion and prepared me to share it with others. From getting down to the basics of the credit union movement and the cooperative principles to life lasting relationships with others that are working for that same common goal. It was the best experience of my life!”

Karen Viets, CUDE 2015
Metropolitan District ECU

"So many of us get caught up in learning how to do our jobs that we never truly reflect on why. The DE program helped me to understand why credit unions are here to serve. This was more than a conference. It was an awakening to the credit union movement.”

Doug Bedner, CUDE 2015
Chief Operating Officer
Resource One CU

"The DE program is the future of the credit union movement. It was a very meaningful and humbling experience for me and DE should be required training for every leader within our organizations. I would challenge my fellow CEOs and others to sign up for the next available training to take a deep dive back into the principles and beliefs that have made this movement the success that it is."

Ken Olson, CUDE 2015
Old West Federal Credit Union

“Getting back to our credit union roots and what makes our movement unique was really important to me and I head back to my organization with a clear understanding on how we can do things better. Simply put, I can tell our credit union story better than I ever imagined."

David Hinchey, CUDE 2014
Director of Community Impact
Connecticut Credit Union League

“DE Training is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to learn deeper and broadly experience the movement you are a part of – more than any other credit union industry education you may ever go through. By mentoring, team-building and engaging in hands-on exercises and simulations, you leave this week-long session as a devoted advocate for credit unions in the U.S., and around the world. You are committed to action – looking at ways to improve our financial cooperative structure and outreach to be the best for our members … now and into the future.”

Debra Trautman, CUDE 2014
Vice President-Corporate Marketing
Maine Credit Union League

"There are a lot of tough decisions having to be made in the credit union industry right now. DE Training is a solid reminder to always ask ourselves ‘What's best for our members?’, and when we keep that as our focus, those tough decisions aren't so tough anymore."

Danielle Frawley, CUDE 2014
Vice President- Marketing & Communications
Fort Community CU

“DE training was an enriching experience that will stay with me for years to come. While I have 35 years of experience in the credit union industry, my week at DE Training re-kindled my passion and spirit for our cooperative movement and roots.”

Laida Garcia, CUDE 2014
floridacentral Credit Union

Testimonial Video

For More Information... Chad Helminak, Director of Credit Union Development & Cooperative Values Engagement, at (608) 231-4078 or