CEO of Tennessee’s Ascend Federal Credit Union Joins Board
MADISON, Wis. – Caren Gabriel was appointed to the board of directors of CUNA Mutual Holding Company, effective June 1, 2012.
Gabriel is president and CEO of Ascend Federal Credit Union of Tullahoma, Tenn., which serves more than 137,000 members with 15 financial centers in Tennessee. Gabriel has been with the credit union since 1985 and has served as CEO for the past eight years. Under her leadership, Ascend has grown from $960 million to $1.6 billion in assets.
As president and CEO, Gabriel’s most notable achievements to date include a massive rebranding project that repositioned the credit union within its competitive landscape, and implementation of an aggressive branching strategy that expanded Ascend’s footprint within the 11-county area it serves. Also under her tenure, the credit union has returned $39 million to members through bonus dividends and loan interest refunds
Gabriel is a graduate of the University of Alabama where she earned a degree in marketing. She received her law degree from the University of Tennessee College of Law. From 1985 to 2004, Gabriel served Ascend as executive vice president and general counsel and, in 2004, was named president and CEO.
“Caren has been a catalyst for change at Ascend Federal Credit Union and brings a wealth of credit union knowledge to the board of directors and our company,” said Jeff Post, CUNA Mutual Group president/CEO.
Other CUNA Mutual Holding Company board members include, Eldon R. Arnold (chairman), retired president/CEO, CEFCU, C. Alan Peppers (vice chairman), president/CEO, Westerra Credit Union; Joseph J. Gasper, retired president/COO, Nationwide Insurance; Loretta M. Burd, president/CEO, Centra Credit Union; Bert J. Hash, Jr., president/CEO, Municipal Employees Credit Union of Baltimore, Inc.; Farouk D.G. Wang, retired director of Buildings & Grounds Management, University of Hawaii; Larry T. Wilson, president/CEO, Coastal Federal Credit Union; James W. Zilinski, retired chairman, president/CEO, Berkshire Life Insurance Co.; Robert J. Marzec, retired audit partner, PricewaterhouseCoopers; Randy M. Smith, CEO, Randolph-Brooks Federal Credit Union; and Jeff Post, president/CEO, CUNA Mutual Group.
CUNA Mutual Group insurance, retirement and investment products provide financial security and protection to credit unions and their members worldwide. With more than 75 years of true market commitment, CUNA Mutual Group’s vision is unwavering: To be a trusted business partner who delivers service excellence through customer-focused products and market-driven insight. More information on the company is available on the company’s website at www.cunamutual.com.
CUNA Mutual Group is the marketing name for CUNA Mutual Holding Company, a mutual insurance holding company, its subsidiaries and affiliates. Life, accident, health and annuity insurance products are issued by CMFG Life Insurance Company. Property and casualty insurance products are issued by CUMIS Insurance Society, Inc. Each insurer is solely responsible for the financial obligations under the policies and contracts it issues. Corporate headquarters are located in Madison, Wisconsin.