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Congratulations to the February ’23 DE class

February 2023 DE Class

Twenty-nine credit union leaders from across the United States were designated as Credit Union Development Educators (CUDEs) after completing the National Credit Union Foundation’s signature Development Education (DE) program in February.

This graduating class joins more than 2,000 credit union advocates from 35 countries who have previously received their CUDETM designation.

Delivered over three weeks as a virtual program or as an immersive week-long in-person event, DE is a unique, transformative training experience. It 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 session provides insights into how credit unions can leverage their unique business model to help their members and communities overcome the financial and development issues they face.

“The DE Program has been transformational. Now more than ever, it is important all credit unions create a culture of leadership through our People Helping People philosophy,” says Hannah McGee of Palmetto Citizens Federal Credit Union.

“I have learned invaluable concepts and skills to bring back to our credit union to improve our understanding of financial well-being for all.”

“I think it is easy to get hyper-focused on the bottom line and financial metrics, but attending the DE class has taken me back to “my roots” and reminded me of why I fell in love with our movement in the first place. I’m taking back to my credit union a renewed passion for helping those whom we were founded to serve!” says Hope Garrett, CEO of Education Personnel Federal Credit Union.

The Foundation’s Program Director, Tobi Weingart, added, “We’re proud to have these 29 credit union leaders join the ranks of one of the oldest and largest credit union networks. We look forward to watching them carry forward a legacy of DEs putting learning into compassionate action.

“The demands and expectations of modern credit union members are constantly changing, but one thing that remains constant is their desire to attain financial well-being, all while receiving compassionate and empathetic support from the credit union community.”

Class graduates

The most recent DE graduating class included credit union movement representatives from across the United States. They are:

  • Hough Armstrong-Price, Local Government FCU, NC
  • Sephorah Beukenboom, Palmetto Citizens FCU, SC
  • Dana Brock, Chartway FCU, VA
  • Arturo Bujanda, Raiz FCU, TX
  • Jody Cisewski, Sentry Credit Union, WI
  • LeAndre (Lee) Dupree, Connex CU Inc., CT
  • Cindy Duquette, Vibe Credit Union, MI
  • Delan Fulgham, Community Credit Union, ME
  • Hope Garrett, Education Personnel FCU, IL
  • Chivon Gilliard, South Carolina Federal Credit Union, SC
  • Erin Gomez, Rio Grande Credit Union, NM
  • Brittany Hockenberry, Vizo Financial Corporate CU, PA
  • Marla Jacobus, Cutting Edge FCU, ID
  • Piper Kenny, Family Focus FCU, NE
  • Gina Kotek, TwinStar CU, WA
  • James Kress, BECU, WA
  • Alecia Labove, CUNA, WI
  • Hannah McGee, Palmetto Citizens FCU, SC
  • Jon Morrill, Mid Minnesota FCU, MN
  • Rebecca Reini, Christian Financial Credit Union, MI
  • Lisha Roubert, CUNA, WI
  • Tia Sabawi, Rio Grande Credit Union, NM
  • Bree Shellito, Ent Credit Union, CO
  • David Smith, SchoolsFirst FCU, CA
  • Laura Wachowiak, Sentry Credit Union, WI
  • Becky Weaber, Vizo Financial Corporate CU, PA
  • Daniel West, California and Nevada Credit Union League, CA
  • Amber Williams, Greater New Orleans FCU, LA
  • Courtney Williams, Iowa Credit Union League, IA

Training staff

The program was facilitated by Tobi Weingart, program director, and assisted by Maggie Wolff, senior manager of products.

Interested in attending DE?

2023 DE training dates and learning environments are available here. Email us at [email protected] to be put on a notification list to stay up to date on upcoming DE registration information.

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