Maurice Smith
Maurice Smith, president/CEO, Local Government FCU, Raleigh, N.C., accepts the National Credit Union Foundation’s 2020 Herb Wegner Memorial Award for Outstanding Individual Achievement.

Fiore, Freeborn, Smith honored during Wegner Awards Gala

Attendees raise more than $15,000 to improve financial lives through credit unions.

February 25, 2020

For the 32nd consecutive year, the National Credit Union Foundation hosted the Herb Wegner Awards Monday night, in conjunction with the 2020 CUNA Governmental Affairs Conference.

The Herb Wegner Awards are considered the highest honor in the credit union movement.

“Purpose: It’s a noun-- ‘the reason for which something is done’. It’s also a verb – ‘to have as one’s intention or objective,’” said Gigi Hyland in her opening remarks during ceremony. “Purpose is a differentiator for us as a movement. You can feel it here tonight, in this room, the energy and excitement that radiates from you all as we gather to celebrate individuals who have lived and breathed the true purpose of credit unions. It all starts and ends with people.”

Recipients of the 2020 Herb Wegner Memorial Awards for Outstanding Individual Achievement were:

  • John Fiore, director, Andigo CU and director emeritus, Alloya Corporate FCU in Illinois;
  • Teresa Freeborn, president and chief executive of Xceed Financial CU in California; and
  • Maurice R. Smith, CEO of Local Government FCU in North Carolina.


  • Slide 01

    John Fiore, director, Andigo CU and director emeritus, Alloya Corporate FCU in Illinois

  • Slide 02

    Teresa Freeborn, president and chief executive of Xceed Financial CU in California

  • Slide 03

    Maurice R. Smith, CEO of Local Government FCU in North Carolina


The first honoree of the evening was Fiore. “My contributions of protecting and growing our great movement is small compared to the thousands who have come before me and the thousands that will follow me to ensure that credit unions flourish and continue to exist to fulfill their purpose of helping people,” he said in accepting the award.

In accepting her award, Freeborn said: “Over the course of my four decades in the credit union movement, I’ve been blessed to have experienced many highlights, but receiving this Herb Wegner Memorial Award has to count as the brightest. I am truly humbled to be in the company of such an impressive roster of credit union leaders. I am also grateful to so many mentors, colleagues, friends and family members who have supported, encouraged and inspired me over the years – this award is as much a credit to them and their contributions as it is to me.”

The final honoree was Smith. “Becoming a Wegner Award recipient is an unparalleled honor in the credit union movement,” he said. “The award showcases the contributions and commitments of credit union heroes. I am flattered to be mentioned in a similar light as some of the giants in our industry.”

This year’s event shattered all previous attendance records with over 1,000 people gathered at the Marriott Marquis in Washington, DC. The Wegner Dinner is also the primary fundraising event for the Foundation. Through a text-to-give initiative during the awards dinner, attendees raised over $15,000 to improve people’s financial lives through credit unions.

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