(March 28, 2011 – New Orleans, LA) On March 21, the National Federation of Community Development Credit Unions (Federation) launched its new series of regional conferences: Credit Unions and Community Development: Lessons and Impact, the first of which was held in New Orleans, Louisiana, organized in collaboration with the Louisiana Credit Union League and Jefferson Financial Credit Union (Metarie, LA).
|(Left to right) Connie Major Executive Vice President for the Louisiana Credit Union League, Kristin Reedy, VP of Operations at Jefferson Financial CU, and Federation President/CEO Cliff Rosenthal during the event.
The one-day event held at Jefferson Financial Credit Union, was designed to help credit unions:
- Gain a better understanding of the benefits of CDFI certification and Low-Income Designation;
- Learn about innovative programs and products to meet the needs of LMI consumers;
- Identify resources to implement high-impact programs;
- Develop community partnerships to leverage and expand credit union service to the underserved; and
- Understand the tools available to develop effective outreach strategies in LMI markets
The conference also included a special track on foreclosure prevention strategies that provided credit unions with information and resources to assist members in need.
“The Louisiana Credit Union League is pleased to partner with the Federation to share the benefits of Low Income and Community Development Designations, as well as the opportunities that these designations bring to the consumers of Louisiana,” said Louisiana Credit Union League President & CEO Ann Cochran. “The turnout for this first joint venture was overwhelming and the presentations have generated a lot of interest in moving forward.”
One participant in attendance, Joe Arnold, CFO at Carter FCU, a $200 million in assets credit union in Springhill, LA found the event especially informative. “I am so thankful that the Federation and the Louisiana Credit Union League put together this training,” he said. “One of the many things I learned was that low-income designated credit unions and CDFI-certified credit unions can be exempted from the MBL cap. We’ve been actively involved in the industry’s efforts in increasing the MBL cap, but little did I know that our credit union already possesses the ability to increase MBL through our CDFI certification,” he added.
“Among our primary goals for these regional conferences is to reach out to credit unions who might not consider themselves CDCUs, but who may in fact be doing a lot to serve their low- and moderate-income members,” explained Federation President/CEO Cliff Rosenthal. “Often, these so-called ‘mainstream’ credit unions are doing outstanding community development work in their communities, and our hope is that these meetings will help us identify those that are already engaged in this work and provide them with additional resources and information to better meet their mission,” he said.
“We are delighted to come to New Orleans at the invitation of the Louisiana Credit Union League,” explained Rosenthal. “With one of the highest concentrations of low-income credit unions and CDFIs of any state in the country, it’s a natural fit for the Federation services."
The Federation’s Mid-South Regional Conference was made possible with support from CUNA Mutual Group, the Louisiana Credit Union League, Jefferson Financial Credit Union, and JP Morgan Chase.
© 2011 National Federation of Community Development Credit Unions.