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CUNA Members Elect New Open Membership Model
Monday, March 21, 2016 6:50 AM

The membership of the Credit Union National Association has overwhelmingly voted to modernize the association’s bylaws. This historic change creates a new open-membership model for CUNA and empowers the board of directors to maintain a fair dues formula and board structure as the credit union system evolves. 

With more than 2,200 credit unions participating, or more than 43 percent of the membership, more than 90 percent voted in favor.

“This is a tremendous victory for credit unions. I am grateful to our members for this strong vote of confidence in CUNA and for embracing a modern, national trade association model that will help us build an even stronger, more effective, and more united credit union system,” said CUNA President/CEO Jim Nussle. 

Nussle added: “This new membership model allows us to enhance and build upon our already strong interdependence with the Leagues. Interdependence has helped us serve the best interests of credit unions for many years."

Cornerstone Credit Union League CEO Dick Ensweiler said, "The members of CUNA have spoken. It is a new day and one in which we will have to have show every day the value of an interdependent credit union/league/CUNA system. With choice as to whether credit unions can join the league or CUNA or both beginning in 2017, it is important everyone understands that we are better together. This great credit union movement was built through a coordinated effort at all levels, and we must make sure we stay united if we have a chance to succeed going forward."

Coordination with the state leagues for the 2017 dues cycle has already begun. Under the association’s new bylaws, credit unions will have the option of belonging to CUNA and their state league or CUNA alone. Several state leagues already have implemented similar changes. 

CUNA now turns to its bold agenda for the future, which includes:

  • Celebrating the credit union difference in all CUNA does.
  • Rejecting the one-size-fits-all regulatory scheme adopted out of convenience by policy makers and regulators that rob credit unions of our very nature. 
  • Pointing out that credit unions aren’t banks, so policy makers and regulators must stop treating us like banks.
  • Asserting credit union relevance in the market place by leading the kind of financial services disruption that Americans are searching for today, putting consumers first.