Sedric Brinson’s compassion fuels his passion for credit unions and his drive to make a difference.
Brinson, assistant vice president, member solutions, and brand ambassador for $167 million asset Statewide Federal Credit Union in Flowood, Miss., studied education in college because his initial career goal was to teach or coach.
“My heartfelt passion was in some shape or form of helping people. I loved the feeling I had when I made someone feel good about themselves or I was able to motivate someone,” he says.
“I am constantly looking for ways to positively impact others,” Brinson says. “The credit union totally affords me the opportunity to do so.”
In 2020, he reconstructed Statewide Federal's collections department, renaming it the member solutions department.
“In the middle of a pandemic, people were negatively impacted through loss of employment, loss of income, and even loss of family,” he says. "People were hurting. This was the perfect time for credit unions to show themselves as the strong community partners we are.”
Brinson set the tone that showed members how Statewide Federal was there for them. The credit union offered hardship extensions and worked with members on a case-by-case basis.
“The joy and peace of mind I get after a member calls and thanks me is all the motivation I need to get up and do it all over again,” Brinson notes.
Five years ago, Brinson joined the Statewide Federal team as a branch manager. “The CEO was looking for someone who could come in and create an environment of unity,” he says.
Brinson had been working at a local bank, where he started as a teller and advanced through the ranks over a 12-year period to become a branch manager.
Brinson notes it’s his banking experience that enables him to see the credit union difference.
“Helping people to turn their financial struggles into success stories is such a rewarding feeling,” he says. “Sometimes it’s not all about the paycheck. Sometimes it’s about the purpose, and I personally choose to live on purpose.”
He believes credit unions are a good fit for anyone who feels likewise. “If your heart is aligned with the process of making a difference, then this is just the place for you.”
His mantra for success: “Be the example you want to see in your communities."
He also recommends both seeking out a mentor and being one.
“Mentors are a huge part of being successful. Pay homage to those who have paved the way of your journey—whether they are credit union people or not—and ask them a lot of questions,” Brinson says. “And take someone along with you. Groom the next person to have a seat at the table. Lift others as you go forward.”
His advice for credit unions seeking to attract and retain young professionals is to align culture and mission and ensure their efforts for diversity, equity, and inclusion are seen, heard, and implemented.