Newly elected CUNA Board Chairman Troy Stang addressed CUNA’s Governmental Affairs Conference (GAC) Tuesday for the first time as chairman, detailing his credit union journey and laying out goals for his term. Stang said he’s “deeply humbled” by being elected as chairman and thanked outgoing Chairman Brett Martinez for his leadership over the last year.
Looking ahead, Stang said credit unions need to continue to evolve, to remain relevant, and said it’s a blessing that credit unions aren’t distracted by the need to meet stockholder expectations on Wall Street, but rather the members themselves.
“Let’s stand proud knowing that our financial model, credit unions, is the only model that is directly accountable to those it serves,” he said.
Stang, who is also president/CEO of the Northwest Credit Union Association, said credit unions are in his DNA, as his grandfather and grandfather’s siblings chartered a faith-based credit union in the 1930s, the same credit union where he eventually began his credit union career.
“Since my early childhood back on the farm I always knew that credit unions place members’ needs first, and they uphold the direct accountability to put people before profits,” he said. “Throughout this entire career, I’ve worked at credit unions in the Midwest and Southwest helping members firsthand manage between paychecks and fulfilling life’s dreams.”
He recalled a member, “Alan” who used to come in at 3:45 every Thursday afternoon to get $26 advanced from his paycheck so he could fill his truck with gas to get to work before payday on Friday, and would pay it back the following day.
Alan eventually took advantage of the credit union’s financial counseling resources, and eventually got a loan to purchase a mobile home for his family. On a recent visit back to his hometown Stang was driving back to his family farm when he saw a mailbox in front of a tree-lined driveway leading to a house with Alan’s name on it.
“Alan’s story is why so many of us are in this business. That mission-aligned aspect of people helping people, it’s just so darn powerful,” he said. “Standing with our members through stages of life, ultimately celebrating so many dreams and eventual prosperity, this is what makes the credit union movement so powerful and rewarding.”
Stang’s full presentation can be viewed on CUNA’s Facebook page, where it was streamed live.
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