Cornerstone Leadership Academy
Leadership Academy

Bridging the Gap Between New and Seasoned Credit Union Leaders

The Leadership Academy was designed by credit union professionals for credit union professionals. With a clear focus on building leaders within our credit unions the Academy allows for growth through engagement.

The objective is to promote the overall industry, tie new leaders closer to the credit union movement, and provide an avenue to receive mentoring and discuss leadership philosophy. Whether students are 30 days or 30 years into their career, this program is ideal for participants that are looking to grow, but also for current leaders to further demonstrate their expanded knowledge.


The Cornerstone Leadership Academy was an eyeopener to all things credit union and is a great buffer for Southwest CUNA Management School.

Not only did the class cover the industry, but it really delved into what leadership truly is, which proved to be invaluable and what I got most out of the Academy!

The small class size allowed for a more personal experience and I will carry what I learned with me not only at work, but in life as well.

- Kimberli Felts, Branch Manager at MTCU

What Can Chapters & Students Expect?

  • One day of learning per month in a classroom-style setting.
  • Convenient 9-month program delivered by the chapter.
  • Training designed by credit union leaders for credit union leaders.
  • Learning from "best of the best" facilitators and guest speakers.
  • Pairing with a specially chosen mentor.
  • In-depth leadership philosophy with seasoned professionals.
  • A springboard to next-level leadership training and positions.
  • Collaboration on an immersive leadership project.
  • Monthly Leadership “Lunch and Learn” sessions.
  • All ranges of credit union professionals accepted.

The Cornerstone Collaboration Program

Through the Cornerstone Collaboration Program, each student is carefully paired with a mentor from across the region. If you have ever had a good mentor, you undoubtedly recognize the incalculable value to your career that a mentor can provide.

Even if you're not thinking about becoming a student in the Academy, sign up for this incredible initiative for a personally rewarding experience.

A Springboard for the Future

The Cornerstone Leadership Academy is also a springboard for students to become next-level credit union leaders. As an introductory leadership course, the Leadership Academy provides the foundation for future development in such educational programs as the Cornerstone Principles and Philosophy Conference, Credit Union Development Educator (CUDE) training, and Southwest CUNA Management School (SCMS).

Education Investment

This educational opportunity is open to Cornerstone-affiliated credit unions. Chapters and students must commit to one full day of learning per month for nine months. In a classroom-style environment, facilitators lead students through the following modules:

Module One:

  • The Leadership Academy Welcome
  • Outcomes and Expectations
  • Team Projects
  • Assignments and Responsibilities
  • Credit Union History & Culture
  • Values & Traditions

Module Two:

  • What is Advocacy
  • Resources
  • Introduction to Compliance, Regulators, Laws, Exams and Audits

Module Three:

  • Leadership

Module Four:

  • A Deeper Look at Compliance
  • Branch Operations

Module Five:

  • Lending

Module Six:

  • Project Management
  • Information Technology (IT)

Module Seven:

  • Human Resources
  • Marketing

Module Eight:

  • Accounting and Finance
  • CLA Program Review and Final Project Prep

Module Nine:

The Academy culminates in a graduation session where the students get to display all they have learned in a final presentation to benefit their credit union and their members.

Interested in Starting the Academy at Your Chapter?

Contact Cornerstone today!

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