Guthrie FCU, other smaller CUs shine in Callahan & Associates’ spotlight

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Washington, D.C. (April 7, 2011) – Guthrie Federal Credit Union may be small, but its leaders act big.

To compete with larger bank and credit union counterparts, $50 million Guthrie FCU offers aggressively priced products, a robust suite of automated services, and debit/credit card reward programs. It also is considering mobile banking in 2011 — a big step for credit unions of any size.

In an effort to highlight the insights and strategies of credit unions with profiles similar to Guthrie FCU, Callahan & Associates is sharpening its focus on smaller institutions.

“There’s no doubt that smaller credit unions are key players in helping to move our industry forward — and their stories and lessons learned can offer ideas to help others succeed,” said Alix Patterson,
Chief Operating Officer at Callahan. “These are the issues and topics that resonate with a vast majority of credit unions across the country.”

Credit unions with less than $100 million in assets are by far the largest segment of the industry – a whopping 81 percent. Callahan & Associates, through its role in analyzing industry trends and performance, is sharing success stories and business strategies from within this sector of credit unions in its various financial publications, videos, and online resources.

For example, Penn.-based Guthrie FCU is being featured in this quarter’s Credit Union Strategic Performance (CUSP) publication. The Credit Union is led by President/CEO Eric Chase, who doesn’t let the credit union’s smaller size limit its thinking. At Guthrie FCU, which has 6,700 members, it is not uncommon to invest in technology and implement initiatives typically associated with larger institutions.

“Sometimes, my same-sized peers don’t take enough risk, but we are in a risk business,” said Chase, whose credit union offers members Internet banking and electronic bill payment services. The Credit Union also acts big when it comes to investing in the future. “People like to see progress, and at Guthrie, we’ve tried to maintain a positive presence in the Valley,” said Chase. In recent years, the Credit Union has remodeled its main branch and replaced its second one with a new facility offering a drive-up ATM and coin counter.   

The current issue of CUSP also shares insights from other CEOs leading credit unions with assets under $100 million, including Creighton Federal Credit Union in Omaha, Neb; Genesee Co-op Federal Credit Union in Rochester, N.Y; Team Financial Federal Credit Union in Houston; and United Services Credit Union in Asheville, N.C. Further, a recent Callahan & Associates newsletter featured the story of successful loan growth at Greenville Heritage Federal Credit Union in Greenville, S.C.

“The stories of smaller credit unions can educate and inspire a large segment of our industry,” said Patterson. “At Callahan, we are committed to including a more diverse asset base of credit unions in our analysis and best practices.”

Credit unions that want to learn more about Guthrie’s best practices can pick up the 4Q10 issue of CUSP or watch the Anatomy of a Big Thinker webisode series on CUtv. For additional resources related to the credit union industry, visit

About Callahan & Associates

Callahan & Associates, based in Washington, D.C., has been serving the credit union community for more than 25 years. The firm specializes in financial publications, technology-driven credit union information, strategic planning, and investment management. Through its portal,, Callahan & Associates offers a full suite of products designed to enhance the performance of credit unions and suppliers, including financial analysis software, research, webinars and expert commentary. To learn more, visit  


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