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Rio Grande CU Becomes First Juntos Avanzamos Designee in New Mexico
Wednesday, December 16, 2015 7:00 AM

Rio Grande Juntos Avanzamos

Leaders from the Federation of Community Development Credit Unions and the Cornerstone Credit Union League presented Rio Grande Credit Union with the Juntos Avanzamos designation for their continued history of outreach to Albuquerque’s Hispanic community. Also participating in this Proclamation Ceremony were US Congresswoman Michelle Lujan Grisham, Counsul of Mexico Efren N. Leyva, and Bernalillo Commissioner Art de la Cruz.

The Juntos Avanzamos ("Together We Advance") designation was developed to formally recognize those credit unions throughout the country that have a history of serving the underserved, increasing members’ financial literacy, and providing products and services that provide a better alternative to payday lenders and cash advance storefronts. As the Albuquerque Journal noted this past September, more than one in three Albuquerque residents are unbanked. This designation recognizes the efforts of Rio Grande Credit Union to introduce this population to a helpful part of the American financial system.

US Congresswoman Michelle Lujan Grisham remarked, “The type of work that Rio Grande Credit Union does here helps create a generation of financial security.”

Rio Grande Juntos AvanzamosOna Porter, executive director of Prosperity Works, said, “First [Rio Grande Credit Union] gave us everything we needed to open Prosperity Kids accounts for more than 500 children and emergency accounts for their parents. Then they sought and received a low-income designation and became a CDFI (Community Development Financial Institution) allowing them to provide products and services on different terms than they previously could; and now a Juntos Avanzamos designation declaring their continued dedication to serve the Hispanic community. When we ask our partners to act within their purviews of power to remove barriers and create pathways to economic security, opportunity abounds.”

The celebration culminated with the raising of the Juntos Avanzamos flag over the Rio Grande Credit Union headquarters accompanied by mariachi fanfare.

"This award is not so much recognition of one particular Rio Grande effort," says president/CEO Chris Fitzgerald, "It's recognition of our history of service to the local community. We're proud to raise the Juntos Avanzamos flag above Rio Grande Credit Union."

Rio Grande Juntos AvanzamosAbout Rio Grande Credit Union
Rio Grande Credit Union is a not-for-profit financial institution started by the City of Albuquerque employees more than 60 years ago. Rio Grande Credit Union operates five branches throughout Albuquerque and holds over $270 million in assets. The credit union was recently recognized as one of two of the healthiest financial institutions in New Mexico according to depositaccounts.com. Anyone living or working in Bernalillo or Sandoval counties may join.

About Juntos Avanzamos
Originally launched in 2005 as an immigrant outreach program, the Juntos Avanzamos program was designed to help credit unions attract and serve the growing Hispanic market in Texas. Now through a partnership with the National Federation of Community Development Credit Unions, Juntos Avanzamos has a national reach. There are now more than 40 Juntos Avanzamos-designated credit unions in America.