Credit Union Magazine recently spoke with former CUNA Technology Council Chairman Jim Morrell about the importance of professional development in the wake of the CUNA Councils’ 6,000 member milestone.
Morrell is president/CEO of $150 million asset Peninsula Credit Union in Shelton, Wash.
CU Mag: What’s the best career advice you’ve received, and who did it come from?
Morrell: “Always know and listen to your customers.”
That came from Elmer Anderson, my grandfather. He was a banker—but one with a credit union heart.
Whether working with apple farmers in Eastern Washington, brothers who wanted to expand a shoe store called Nordstrom, or someone who needed a car to get to work, Elmer never lost sight of the importance of service before self.
CU Mag: How has professional development helped your career?
Morrell: The CUNA Technology Council plugged me into a network of professionals that did not use technology as a solution seeking a problem. Instead, there were a lot of very smart people focused on what credit union members needed and how to leverage technology to meet those needs.
The CUNA Technology Council—and the opportunities to serve as Council Chair and a member of the Council Forum—afforded me tremendous leadership growth. It was always an honor to speak about technology trends as a spokesperson for the council.
Relating my background in economics and finance to technology and translating that across all professional disciplines enabled me to continue to advance my credit union career.
CU Mag: Membership at the CUNA Councils has reached 6,000. What are the implications for the CU movement?
Morrell: Critical mass exists with networks of credit union professionals across the six council disciplines. These networks allow for expert-level collaboration and idea-sharing to help propel the industry forward.
Even more significantly, each council has the ability to do more than influence the credit union industry, but lead the entire financial services industry. There is no challenge the members of the CUNA Councils cannot address.