CEO Roundtable
TruEnergy Federal Credit Union president/CEO Lynette Smith (left) and TFCU president/CEO Max Villaronga

PODCAST: Pandemic leadership

Credit union CEOs share key takeaways from a challenging 2020.

January 14, 2021

The outset of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic in 2020 provided unforeseen challenges for every credit union leader. Leadership lessons gleaned from webinars and audiobooks were put to the test under the pressure of a crisis, and new lessons were forged from failure and success.

In this podcast, two credit union CEOs share their pandemic experiences and how they’re moving forward in 2021.

Lynette Smith, president/CEO of $130 million asset TruEnergy Credit Union in Springfield, Va., shares how TruEnergy leveraged a largely remote workforce to serve 9,000 members during the pandemic with a blend of technology and appointment-only, face-to-face member service.

Max Villaronga, president/CEO of El Paso (Texas) Area Teachers Federal Credit Union, explains how the $740 million asset credit union serves 65,000 members largely through remote services in one of the states hardest hit by the pandemic.


Smith and Villaronga provide insight and lessons that credit union leaders can apply within their own organizations.

You can listen to the CUNA News Podcast in Apple’s iTunes StoreGoogle PodcastsSpotify, and Stitcher Radio.

In this episode:

1:10: The biggest challenge of the pandemic

3:40: Providing comfort for stakeholders

6:34 Leadership lessons applied during the pandemic

11:49: Pandemic practices to carry forward

12:43: What the new normal will look like

15:17: Financial effects

18:07: Long-term impacts of COVID-19