How DE training changes lives: Nanci Wilson & Mary Beth Spuck

Four times a year, credit union professionals from around the U.S., and some from around the globe, gather for a one week credit union “boot-camp” filled with lessons in principles, philosophy, history and more.

While many aspects of what goes on during Credit Union Development Education (DE) Training remain unknown to those who haven’t joined the secret circle, there is one aspect of the training that is well known – it is life changing. Often times this experience helps credit union professionals to discover and ignite a passion they didn’t know existed, which ultimately benefits their credit union career and the credit union movement as a whole.

To highlight the incredible successes that can come from attending DE Training, the Foundation has started capturing the stories of past attendees and learning how DE has changed their life.

Nanci Wilson is a fantastic example of how DE can change your life. Nanci attended DE Training in 2015 as a Member Service Supervisor at North Star Community Credit Union in North Dakota. She is now serving as the Training and Education Director at North Star CU, and credits her passion and credit union purpose to the DE Program.

“I came to DE knowing nothing about CU history or what we stood for. DE has a special way of making you step outside of your comfort zone, tossing you into the credit union knowledge pool, building you up, and then aligning you in such a way that you simply can’t imagine NOT being in the credit union movement. Because of DE, I view members completely differently. When they walk in our credit union, I strive to be that person that makes them feel welcomed and comfortable enough to ask the tough questions. This approach came directly from my DE Training and has opened up an entirely new world in the way that I treat everyone.”

Nanci has remained involved with DE, serving as a mentor in 2016, speaking at DE graduation, and attending other speaking engagements about credit union principles and philosophies. DE has inspired her to help her community through various projects such as CU-Connect, where she connects her members to local business and services. It has also inspired a yearly backpack exchange for local kids, and an entrepreneurship program for youth called Seeds-2-$ave.

You can learn more about Nanci’s life and impactful projects after DE by clicking here.

Another great example of an inspiring story of DE changing someone’s life is Mary Beth Spuck. Mary Beth went through DE in 2009 when she was serving as the AVP of Retail Sales at TwinStar Credit Union in Washington. She believes that the experiences and knowledge she received through the DE Program helped shape her into the leader she is today, as she now serves as the Chief Administrative Officer at TwinStar CU.

“I have always strived to be a servant leader, and my DE experience has helped me further develop those servant leadership traits. Through exercises and activities within DE, I have gained more empathy for my staff. One of the biggest take-aways I had from DE was the 12 development issues and how they can affect the daily lives of members and even my staff. I now look for ways to serve our employees with benefits that help address any of the 12 development issues our staff maybe experiencing. In addition, the program has emboldened me to take action when I see injustice rather than sit on the sideline”

Since attending DE, she has stayed active in the DE community. She co-facilitated the Philippines DE Program where she gained exposure to cooperatives in the Philippines, which lead to her being more involved with cooperatives in Washington. She has also served as a DE mentor, and participated in Filene’s i3 program, which stands for Ideas, Innovation and Implementation.  

You can learn more about Mary Beth’s accomplishments after attending DE by clicking here.

You can see more examples of DEs around the US making a difference in the lives of their credit union members and those in their community by clicking here.

Lacey Yasick

Lacey Yasick

Lacey is the Communications Manager for the National Credit Union Foundation. She works to develop and execute all communication efforts that support the Foundation's national programs and engagement strategy. Lacey ... Web: Details