Local Woman Wins $10k In Third-Annual Summit Credit Union ‘Project Money’ Competition

For more information, contact:
Tania Widish, Summit Credit Union
(608) 243-5000 x4701,

MADISON, Wis. — Just seven months ago, Penny Duane, a divorced, single mom from Madison, was in debt, living paycheck-to-paycheck. Today, the Madison resident has not only turned her financial life around by reducing her debt by $6,779 and increasing her savings by $6,129, she is also the grand-prize winner of Summit Credit Union’s third-annual Project Money competition.

Since the program’s kick-off in June 2011, Duane, along with three other contestants, and community members who followed their progress, learned how to ‘do more’ with their money and achieve financial success. Collectively, the four competing participants boosted their savings by $25,498 and reduced their debt by $33,239.

With the guidance of her Project Money coach, Mary Johnson, Duane says the competition taught her about more than just managing her finances. “It was amazing to learn about myself and my family, and how we all feel about money,” said Duane. “It’s given me peace of mind–I have proven to myself that I can accomplish what I set out to do.”

Duane was named winner of the 2011 Project Money competition and received the grand prize of $10,000 at the finale reception held by Summit Credit Union on Feb. 21 at the Coliseum Bar in Madison. Each of the Project Money runners-up also walked away with $2,500.

“Penny began her Project Money journey looking to reduce her debt and build her savings,” said Johnson. “After seven months, she did that and much more! She has paid down debt, built an emergency fund, and is saving for a down payment on a home and contributing to her retirement savings. She has developed the skills to tell her money where it’s going instead of her money telling her.”

The other 2011 Project Money participants included:

  • Larry and Juli Brown, and 14-year-old twins, Larry Jr. and Lexie, from DeForest
  • Jennifer Jones, from Madison
  • Dan and Sheila Robertson, and 5-year-old son, Max, from Blanchardville

Visit to learn more about each participant’s journey and final results, as well as to learn about the next Project Money Challenge. Applications for the 2012 program are available at Summit’s web site and will be accepted until March 31, 2012.

About Summit Credit Union:
Established in 1935, Summit Credit Union is a member-owned financial cooperative open to anyone in Wisconsin. Summit holds $1.7 billion in assets and has more than 122,000 members with a total of 23 locations throughout the Madison and Milwaukee areas. For more information, visit or call (608) 243-5000 or (800) 236-5560.

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