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ALM Consultant Dr. Charles Idol Retires, but His Legacy Continues
Thursday, June 8, 2017 7:00 AM

Dr. Idol

Dr. Charles Idol, renowned Credit Union ALM consultant, officially retired in December 2016. His commitment to serving credit unions spanned 41 years. He began his credit union career in 1975 after his election to the board of directors at Idaho State University Federal Credit Union. After developing tools for ISUFCU to analyze their operation, he realized these same tools could be used to help other credit unions, and his career as an ALM consultant began.

As his reputation grew, Idol was asked to join the faculty of Southwest CUNA Management School. This led to a joint relationship as senior vice president/chief economist for the Texas Credit Union League and chief economist for Southwest Corporate Federal Credit Union from 1983 to 1992. Idol became an independent consultant in 1992 but continued to work with the Texas Credit Union League (now Cornerstone) ALM Resource and Southwest Corporate’s (now Catalyst) board, ALCO, and Investment Advisory Service. He also served as interim CEO of Southwest Corporate in 1995.

Idol has written several software packages to analyze the financial condition of credit unions. The most recent, ABAJO, is used by Cornerstone ALM Resource to provide dues-supported ALM consulting and education to member credit unions. During his career, Idol published numerous articles and papers on asset/liability management techniques for credit unions, provided ALM instruction for both state and federal regulators, the Credit Union National Association, numerous credit union-related organizations, and the majority of the leagues in the U.S.

Idol was honored for his 34 years of commitment as an instructor and project evaluator for Southwest CUNA Management School in 2013. He was inducted into the Cornerstone Hall of Fame in 2015.

“Dr. Idol has truly been an innovator and pioneer in developing asset/liability management tools and techniques for credit unions,” said Deborah Rightmire, vice president of ALM Resources for Cornerstone. “He was always thinking, always creating, keeping his eye on the single goal of making credit unions and this movement the very best they can be. His knowledge and willingness to share that knowledge with credit unions of all sizes had a profound impact on the credit union industry and on the lives of their members.”

Two of the primary resources developed by Idol and widely used by credit unions in the Cornerstone region include peer group statistics and monthly Dividend Guidelines. According to Rightmire, Idol's legacy will continue. The Peer Group Statistics transitioned to ALM Resources some time ago and were expanded to provide a more precise assessment of trends based on asset size. Over the past few months, ALM Resources has worked with Idol to ensure Dividend Guidelines remain available to credit unions that rely on their monthly guidance. The FICO charts will be available to assist credit unions in developing risk-based pricing models.

“Few people have given as much to the credit union movement as Dr. Idol," Rightmire said. "His commitment and passion were undeniable. We wish him well as he moves to the next phase of his life with his wife Carol, his three children, and their families.”