Dan Engelhard
Mazuma Credit Union Chief Lending Officer Dan Engelhard

CLO aims for ‘lotsa loans’

Dan Engelhard focuses on building relationships, supporting staff.

November 30, 2021

Dan Engelhard was recently named 2021 Professional of the Year by the Heartland Credit Union Association (HCUA).  Engelhard is chief lending officer (CLO) at $874.2 million asset Mazuma Credit Union in Overland Park, Kan. 

Credit Union Magazine recently spoke with Engelhard about his interests inside and outside of his credit union.

Credit Union Magazine: What’s your role at Mazuma?

Dan Engelhard: While my title is CLO and my main mantra is “lotsa loans,” my role is to build relationships and protect our purpose, supporting and serving our team to accomplish our purpose.

Q: What are your favorite aspects of that role?

A: Helping members with their lending needs, especially when they believe there is nothing we can do to help. Supporting and watching our team develop, learn, and grow to further help our members and the communities we serve.

Q: What’s the goal of Mazuma’s Financial Wellness Committee and CU Change Program?

A: The goal is simply to help members, team members, and the community succeed financially. But it’s not that simple. We strive to provide the financial knowledge, instruments, and specific actions that set up financial security, reduce financial stress, and provide freedom to reach financial goals.

The CU Change program is a specific action program aimed at addressing the need for an emergency savings account, currently offered to team members.

Q: How has the pandemic affected your financial wellness efforts?

A: There have been more opportunities to help members, whether through skip-a-pay, forbearance, 0% share-secured loans, or Paycheck Protection Program loans. 

We have kicked around whether to continue with a skip-a-pay program as a general offering. But we quickly realized negative amortization scenarios could come in to play which are not great financial wellness situations for members.

Q: How has the credit union industry changed since you started?

A: The credit union industry continues to grow and offer a unique alternative to other financial services offerings, and online channels have developed tremendously.

It’s been a constant growth trajectory since I’ve been at Mazuma. We are constantly looking at new ways to grow membership and make it easier for members to do business with us. We have a good thing going at Mazuma and want to help even more folks in the communities we serve.

Q: What’s your approach to leadership?

A: It’s simple: lead by example and support and serve the team with all they need to do their role well. Put great people in great positions to succeed and great things happen.

Q: What advice would you offer other CLOs?

A: Hire smart, passionate people. Give them the tools to accomplish what you ask them to do, then stay out of their way. And don’t be afraid to take risks. We’re in the risk business, so do what you can to listen to your members’ stories and find ways to assist.

CUNA Lending Council

Q: What do you like to do outside of work?

A: Music and sports are my escapes outside of work. We started a band at Mazuma that consists solely of Mazumans and have played at member events. It’s been difficult to keep that going during the pandemic, but I also play in another band that keeps me busy. Go Chiefs and Royals!

Q: What’s your favorite holiday?

A: Christmas is the most wonderful time of the year, full of family, food, a spirit of giving, and all of the fun holiday season activities.

Q: What else are you passionate about?

A: Family, staying active, veterans, and our country. I’ve been married to my wife, Kelly, for 29 years, with three kids, four dogs, and one adoptive cat. I’m an avid golfer and love to snow ski.

Two tours in Iraq with the Army—one for Desert Storm and another for Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF).

Here’s a funny story on the OIF deployment: one of the first people I was partnered with in Baghdad was a fellow reservist who indicated his civilian role was working for none other than NCUA. I just had to smile, shake my head, and say, ‘I travel halfway around the world to a war zone and still can’t shake the regulators!’ We laughed and he was a great person to work with.