CU Pride™️ – Rainbow glows brighter with commitment from CUNA Mutual Group
BOULDER CITY, NV (May 16, 2022) — Linda Bodie, CEO at Element FCU and now board advisor of CU Pride™, spoke to a crowd of credit union executives and board members at the 2018 Underground Collision in Washington DC, saying, “I’m an out CEO and I struggle to find others like me at conferences like this.” Her authentic, vulnerable comments shined a light on the need for a credit union network that gives the LGBTQ+ community a safe space and engages allies to foster inclusivity, build awareness and ensure representation. Voila, a beautiful rainbow of CU Pride™!
“Not quite a snap of the fingers, as all DEI trailblazers know, it took a significant number of volunteer hours to bring this initiative forward,” said Zach Christensen, executive director of CU Pride™ and director of DEI and digital services at Mitchell Stankovic & Associates (MSA). “We raised our hands, spent many long hours building a foundation that now consists of more than 1300 actively engaged industry professionals.” Through the donation of time, talent and treasury from Underground (MSA), Element FCU, and CU Solutions Group, CU Pride™ has grown from an idea, to a formalized network for all LGBTQ+ professionals, members and allies within the credit union industry.
As a strategic partner of the Underground, CUNA Mutual Group has been engaged since day one and seen first hand the growth of CU Pride™. CUNA Mutual’s core philosophy reflects how credit unions can take their original purpose, people helping people, and apply it in a modern world through their commitment to DEI initiatives. “CUNA Mutual is a signifiant supporter of the Underground because we believe in the authentic, impactful thought leadership it delivers within our movement,” said Gerry Singleton, Vice President of CU System Relations at CUNA Mutual. “We have seen the passion coming out of Underground Collisions and in this case, it ignited an entirely new network in CU Pride™, filling a gap from the initial industry DEI initiatives. CUNA Mutual is an advocate and an ally with CU Pride™ to embrace the LGBTQ+ community.”
In that spirit, CU Pride™ is excited to announce that CUNA Mutual recently made a significant contribution to support the network and will extend that commitment to CU Pride™ for three years along with providing thought leadership and engagement of the CUNA Mutual PRISM engagement resource group (ERG). “We believe in being bold and effective organizational allies to our most vulnerable communities,” shared John Cassidy, director of CU System Relations and CU Pride strategic contact at CUNA Mutual Group. “CU Pride™ has accomplished so much in a short period of time, and we know that with the right support, the impact on credit unions and our communities will continue to grow.”
“We knew that creating a safe space for others to be authentic within the industry was important, so we made it happen while also engaging allies with us on this journey,” commented Brandi Stankovic, CSO of CU Solutions Group and co-founder of CU Pride™. “We are now ready to scale our mission, build awareness, provide education, networking opportunities and could not ask for a better partner than CUNA Mutual Group to make that happen.”
CU Pride hosts BGHH, monthly educational and networking sessions. June will be CU Pride™ Month and will start with a Leadership Conference on June 3rd, Virtual Pride Celebration on June 24th and weekly get togethers to recognize the LGBTQ+ community. Click here for more information or reach out directly to Zach Christensen at email@example.com.
About CU Pride
CU Pride™ is the LGBTQ+ network association for credit unions. Supporting LGBTQ+ credit union professionals, members and allies, CU Pride™ has a mission to provide opportunities for education, engagement, sharing, and celebration that lets the credit union industry to embrace a diverse, vulnerable and inclusive community. CU Pride™ has evolved from industry affinity group to a formalized network focused on driving vulnerable collaboration around critical issues impacting the credit union LGBTQ+ community and the members they serve. CU Pride™ is a critical component of all diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives and will stand up to have a voice within the industry. CU Pride™️ is a division of Mitchell, Stankovic and Associates.