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The power of purpose: 2023 Herb Wegner Memorial Award winners

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The 2023 Herb Wegner Memorial Award winners

The 34th annual Herb Wegner Memorial Awards highlighted a range of individual and organizational achievements in the credit union industry, all of which highlighted the importance of focusing on our mission. The following content can be used to inspire current and future credit union leaders to keep purpose constant.

Linda Bodie | CEO + Innovator, Element Federal Credit Union

For decades, Linda Bodie, CEO + Innovator at Element Federal Credit Union, has had a head-down, sleeves-up approach to improving the credit union system. Her tireless pursuit of innovation has helped credit unions (particularly the smallest) understand the challenges and opportunities to staying relevant in an increasingly disrupted marketplace—all to ensure the system can meet its mission of improving financial well-being for all. Learn more about Linda’s storied career.

Brian Branch | Former President & CEO, World Council of Credit Unions (WOCCU)

In early 2021, Dr. Brian Branch announced his retirement as President & CEO of the World Council (WOCCU). It marked the conclusion of a decades-long career spent bringing the credit union difference to where it was most needed, no matter how distant or dangerous. Learn more about Brian’s global impact.

Bill Cheney | CEO, SchoolsFirst Federal Credit Union

As CEO of California’s SchoolsFirst Federal Credit Union, Cheney has overseen a sustained period of incredible growth—doubling membership and almost tripling in asset size since 2015. This has been accomplished through a relentless commitment to world-class personal service, ensuring measurable outcomes for his 1.2 million members’ financial well-being, and supporting the U.S. and global credit union movement both financially and strategically. Learn more about Bill’s support of the credit union system.

Winona Nava | President & CEO, Guadalupe Credit Union

Ask someone who knows her well to pinpoint the most impressive thing Winona Nava has accomplished during her nearly half-century career with New Mexico credit unions. They’ll struggle to decide. When career highlights include taking over a credit union in conservatorship—then growing its assets from $10 million to $270 million—playing a key role in convincing your state to pass legislation that allows people to get a driver’s license without citizenship documentation, and spending 16 years combating predatory lending and helping pass legislation that lowered the interest rate cap from 175% to 36% … it’s pretty hard to choose. Learn more about Winona’s story.

Learn more about the Herb Wegner Memorial Awards.

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