The “People Helping People” focus is clearly part of the Rio Grande Credit Union DNA. “In 2014, Rio Grande Credit Union received its Low Income Designation. In 2015, the Treasury Department certified RGCU as a CDFI. And, at the end of 2015, RGCU received the Juntos Avanzamos designation from the Federation along with the Cornerstone Credit Union League,”.says Rio Grande CU President/CEO Chris Fitzgerald. In 2015, RGCU made over $150,000 in ITIN loans to people who work in the community but are not US citizens. “We’re attempting to help people get out of a purely cash-based system, build a credit history, and put them on a smarter path to citizenship,” remarked Fitzgerald. “When you’re able to help someone when no one else will, you have new members for life! Everyone deserves a trusted financial partner.”
Having been turned away by other financial institutions, one member has been without the lending services all of his adult life. With his ITIN in hand, RGCU granted a member a $500 signature loan to help establish credit. The member faithfully paid the loan in full within six months. Because of his successful payment history, the member was recently approved by our credit union for the financing on the purchase of a new vehicle. Now, our member maintains his full relationship with Rio Grande Credit Union, to include having his payroll direct deposited, allowing for a convenient way to make automatic loan payments. This member is planning to reach another financial milestone, and has begun saving to purchase a home in the near future.
- Bill Daily, VP Marketing & Member Experience