CUNA and National Credit Union Foundation staff presented at Wednesday’s NCUA summit on diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) in Alexandria, Va. CUNA Senior Policy Analyst Samira Salem and National Credit Union Foundation Chief Financial and Operations Officer Hannibal Brumskine both presented, and CUNA Chief Engagement Officer Greg Michlig, Deputy Chief Advocacy Officer Elizabeth Eurgubian, Media Relations Manager Lauren Williams and American Association of Credit Union Leagues Executive Director Brad Miller were in attendance, in addition to League and credit union personnel.
“CUNA is proud to participate in today’s summit. As the largest credit union association in the nation, CUNA is committed to an active role in fostering awareness and dialogue about DEI in the credit union movement,” said Michlig. “The range of experts and the topics covered today examined how the credit union system can ensure diversity, equity and inclusion continue to be at the foundation of the shared cooperative principles that guide our movement, and they inspire us all to continue to work toward that goal.”
Salem participated in a discussion on how diversity efforts can be tracked by looking at data from sources such as call reports, the Federal Reserve's Survey of Consumer Finance, CUNA surveys of its membership, as well as from organizations such as the Filene Research Institute, Inclusiv and Coopera.
Brumskine was part of a panel on work being done to recruit, develop and train diverse talent in the credit union movement.
NCUA Chairman Rodney Hood said in his remarks that credit unions started as a way to ensure communities could have access to safe and affordable financial services, and that going forward credit unions can be a “powerful tool” in meeting the needs of communities they are underserved today.
“When credit union people talk about diversity, inclusion, and equity, it is with an understanding that those values are, so to speak, part of this industry’s genetic code. And that is something you can all take pride in,” he said. “However, we should not look back on that proud history and see it as an invitation to rest on our laurels. Because the reality is that while the credit union industry has led the way on these issues, and more and more industries are following that lead, we still have a long way to go.”
He added that NCUA plans to make the summit an annual event, but that is just a starting point, as the conversations need to be followed up by concrete, industry-wide action.
Hood and board members J. Mark McWatters and Todd Harper called on credit unions to use NCUA’s Annual Voluntary Credit Union Diversity Self-Assessment, a tool designed by the agency to help credit unions assess existing diversity and inclusion policies and practices.”