October 2021 DE Class

Congratulations to October ’21 CUDE class

Forty-four credit union leaders from across the United States were designated as Credit Union Development Educators (CUDEs) last week after completing the National Credit Union Foundation’s (the Foundation) signature Credit Union Development Education (DE) training.

DE training is a unique experiential program that provides lessons in credit union structure, purpose and the “why” that differentiates credit unions from other financial institutions. Participants engage in small and large group exercises and interactive speaker sessions focused on the credit union difference, development issues, and empathy. Each lesson provides insights into how credit unions can leverage their unique business model to help their members and communities overcome the financial and developmental issues they face.

“Most credit union programs focus on professional development, community outreach, and political advocacy,” said graduate Jared McCullough, a project manager at Education First Federal Credit Union. “The DE program focuses on emotional development, teaching us how to listen with our hearts and to create positive and meaningful change in our communities. This experience provides the knowledge and resources needed to resolve neglected, critical issues.”

“We’re proud to have these 44 credit union leaders join the ranks of one of the oldest and largest credit union networks,” added Chad Helminak, director of programs and impact at the Foundation. “We look forward to watching them carry forward a legacy of DEs putting learning into action.

“Next year, we will celebrate the 40th anniversary of the DE Program and while the program has evolved over years, we keep its purpose constant by focusing on how we can improve peoples’ financial well-being and offer humanity through financial services.”

Class Graduates

The most recent DE graduating class included credit union movement representatives from across the United States. They are: Paige Akers, Rio Grande Credit Union in New Mexico; Eliana Avila, El Paso Area Teachers FCU in Texas; Colleen Barton, Visions FCU in New York; Patrick Basler, Illinois Credit Union League in Illinois; Alejandro Castillo, Seattle Credit Union in Washington; Joni Cochran-Thomas, Gesa CU in Washington; Christine Cooper, Carolina Foothills FCU in South Carolina; Mark Cope, CUNA Mutual Group in Arizona; Maria Corradi Haines, Norther Communities CU in Minnesota; Jody Dabrowski, Illinois Educators CU in Illinois; Mae Daniels, Extra Credit Union in Michigan; Joe Day, Credit Union National Association in Wisconsin; Lesley Enz, PCM Credit Union in Wisconsin; Jennifer Gear, Capstone FCU in California; Joanna Jackson, Tucson Old Pueblo CU in Arizona; Claudia Jones, SchoolsFirst FCU in California; Liz Kallevig, NorthRidge Community CU in Minnesota; Samuel Kamwenji, INOVA FCU in Indiana; Kyung Kim, Avana Capital in Arizona; Shannon Lujan, Travis CU in California; Melissa Manning, Credit Union of Southern California in California; Jared McCullough, Education First FCU in Texas; Kenny Mitchell, Community South Credit Union in Florida; Michael Namba, San Francisco FCU in California; Lisa Nissen-Harlow, Peninsula Community FCU in Washington; Brenda Pollock, Evergreen Credit Union in Maine; Jesse Presley, Altra FCU in Tennessee; Jerry Reese, Honda FCU in Ohio; Katie Riessen, Ascentra CU in Iowa; Dan Rosen, PSCU in Florida; Meredith Rouse Davis, Local Government FCU in North Carolina; Stefanie Rupp, Orange County’s Credit Union in California; Brent Shaffer, Vizo Financial Corporate CU in Pennsylvania; Terri Shubilla, Cross Valley FCU in Pennsylvania; Sajid Siddiqi, Kaua’i Government Employees FCU in Hawaii; Selina Sites, Partners FCU in Florida; Jill Stewart, Fairmont FCU in West Virginia; Jennifer Tange, Allegan Community FCU in Michigan; Henry Thompson, Chartway FCU in Virginia; Page Thompson, Thinkwise CU in California; Ricardo Loya, Coastal Credit Union in North Carolina; Martha White, America’s First FCU in Alabama; and Carley Wills, CUNA Mutual Group in Wisconsin.

Training Staff

The program was facilitated by Chad Helminak, the Director of Programs & Impact at the Foundation, assisted by Maggie Wolff and Tobi Weingart from the Foundation.

Interested in Attending DE Training?

2022 DE training dates and learning environments will be announced soon. Email us at [email protected] to be put on a notification list to stay up to date on upcoming 2022 registration information, or click here for additional information.