Tony Hildesheim

Chief administrative officer at Redwood Credit Union

November 9, 2020

I served seven years in the United States Marine Corps. As a young adult, the Marines provided structure and a sense of purpose. More importantly, I learned about selfless leadership and traditions.

The military has a lot of traditions and none more than the Marines. Those traditions align people so they know what to expect. It is sort of like going to a birthday party. You know at some point you’re going to sing. Traditions that tie to the purpose are the best as they reinforce the mission. If you see two Marines, you are like to hear one say “Semper Fi.” Faithful to what? The values and principles of the USMC and faithful to each other in good times and in bad. It reminds us that we belong to a fraternity that is bigger than ourselves.

In the Marine Corps, you have a strong sense of purpose and when we were deployed, we knew that what each person was doing mattered and had impact. At Redwood Credit Union, we have traditions and we spend a lot of time communicating to the teams that what they are doing matters. We are focused on our purpose that is embodied in our mission statement to “passionately serve the best interest of our members, employees, and communities” and why? Because we love to see our members, employees, and communities succeed. When you communicate a strong mission with the why, that purpose can turn into a noble purpose. Frankly, today more than ever, don’t we all want to know our lives have meaning and to belong to something that has a purpose that is bigger than our individual selves?

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