PROVIDENCE, R.I. (2/11/14)--Rhode Island Governor Lincoln Chafee (I) declared last Friday Credit Union Day in the state.
He gave Feb. 7 the annual designation as the Credit Union Association of Rhode Island hosted its yearly Governmental Affairs Day at the State House (Daily CU Scan Feb. 10).
The Credit Union Association of Rhode Island's Governmental Affairs Day gave Stephen White, president/CEO, Westerly (R.I.) Community CU, left, an opportunity to meet with State Sen. Juan Pichardo (D-2). (Credit Union Association of Rhode Island photo)
More than 80 credit union officials and legislators participated in the event. The latter were led by state Sens. Chris Ottiano (R) and William Walaska (D), both volunteers for credit unions, and members of the State House Corporations Committees.
Rhode Island General Treasurer Gina Raimondo, who recently received a Credit Union National Association Desjardins Financial Education Award for State Government Policymakers award, gave the keynote speech.
One of two public policymakers who received the national award this year, Raimondo said she is a "huge fan" of credit unions and praised the partnership she has with them in key areas, such as financial counseling.
She said that it is her belief that now, more than ever, the residents of Rhode Island are in need of safe and reliable financial services.
In opening remarks, association President/CEO Paul Gentile noted that Rhode Island credit unions expanded lending by 10.7% over the past year. Gentile said that credit unions' ability to extend credit in lean economic times is "a strong testament" to the relevance of the movement's "historic mission," according to the Daily CU Scan.