NAFCU held their 48th Annual Conference and Solutions Expo in Montréal, Canada this week. Over 1600 people from around the credit union movement brushed up on their French and headed north for the event. During the week, attendees heard from NCUA Chairman Debbie Matz and, in a special “inside the agency” panel Friday, former agency Chairman Michael Fryzel and former Board Member Geoff Bacino. The keynote conference speakers were MasterCard General Counsel and Chief Franchise Officer Tim Murphy, former U.S. Navy commander Mike Abrashoff, and TrendHunter.com founder and CEO Jeremy Gutsche.
The biggest news came on Wednesday when NAFCU President and CEO Dan Berger announced effective immediately it has opened its membership to federally insured, state-chartered credit unions. Ed Templeton, chair and director-at-large of the NAFCU Board of Directors said “This announcement is a natural evolution of NAFCU’s mission and supports our goal to help all federally insured credit unions with federal issues by becoming a stronger, more impactful organization.”
NAFCU also announced their newly elected 2016 Board of Directors during the association’s annual business meeting. Reelected were Ed Templeton, president and CEO of SRP Federal Credit Union in North Augusta, S.C., as chair; Richard Harris, president and CEO of Caltech Employees Federal Credit Union in La Canada, Calif., as vice chair; Jeanne Kucey, president and CEO of JetStream Federal Credit Union in Miami Lakes, Fla., as treasurer; and Debra Schwartz, president and CEO of Mission Federal Credit Union in San Diego, Calif., as secretary.
NCUA Chairman Debbie Matz told attendees that “This is the Year of Regulatory Relief.” And said the NCUA has determined that current law permits the agency to count certain forms of supplemental capital for the RBC ratio. She also said as part of modernizing risk-based capital, “I am committed to counting supplemental capital in full.”
- eliminate the 5 percent fixed-assets cap;
- propose more changes to field-of-membership rules to broaden community charters, improve occupational charters and streamline processes for adding new members;
- finalize an asset securitization rule;
- move forward on its proposal on member business lending; and
- define a “small” credit union as one with less than $100 million in assets.
Attendees chose from many breakout sessions throughout the event. The session on branch innovation through technology was highly attended. The session featured case studies of Coastal Federal Credit Union and Pentagon Federal Credit Union.
Coastal Pres/CEO Chuck Purvis discussed how his credit union transitioned from a traditional branch model to having 17 branches featuring video teller machines. The system allows extended hours, and Purvis said 25 percent of sessions now occur before or after traditional business hours, with 5 percent of sessions occurring on Sundays.
Pentagon FCU Pres/CEO James Schenck discussed how his credit union has moved away from the branch model entirely; instead, it focuses on building its online presence in order to serve members stationed all over the world. He noted that service-members abroad “needed real-time solutions, not brick and mortar,” and said the savings in operational costs allowed the credit union to offer better deals to members and give back more to communities.
MasterCard general counsel and chief franchise officer Tim Murphy discussed the importance of crafting a consumer payments strategy appropriate for current payments innovation on Friday morning. Stating that payments is seeing the most innovation and disruption since the creation of the plastic payment card in the 1960s. Tim also stated a second focus should be “What are you doing to make sure you’re staying engaged with how consumers’ payment needs are changing?” Talking about the shift that is happening in consumer behaviors.