Mary Martha Fortney to retire as NASCUS President and CEO

ARLINGTON, VA (February 21, 2014) — The National Association of State Credit Union Supervisors (NASCUS) today announced that Mary Martha Fortney, President and Chief Executive Officer, will retire after more than 21 years with NASCUS, including the past 11 years as President and CEO.

Joining NASCUS in 1993 as director of Accreditation and Communications, Fortney was the senior staff member responsible for the NASCUS state accreditation program and for the NASCUS written communications.  In late 1995, she became the first Vice President of the organization.  Fortney has been the organization’s President and CEO since January 2004 after having served as NASCUS’ Acting President/CEO from August 2003 until her appointment in 2004.  A nationally recognized leader in the credit union industry and a highly respected advocate for the credit union system, Fortney was instrumental in moving NASCUS forward in its efforts to promote and ensure the viability of the state credit union system.  She has been a pivotal figure in the organization’s growth and development and has championed the NASCUS mission during her entire NASCUS career.

During Fortney’s tenure, NASCUS became a full participant in determining the future of the credit union industry, taking its place among the major system associations.  Under her leadership, NASCUS became a known voice in Washington, DC, and the organization now routinely works with the other financial regulators and policymakers to reshape prudential regulation for the 21st century.

Fortney was often an outspoken early-advocate with NASCUS taking the first official regulator policy positions in favor of responsible charter advancements in areas such as secondary capital, expanded and diversified fields of membership, business lending, protecting credit union unrelated business tax exemption (UBIT), and protecting state authority.

Prior to joining NASCUS, she served as the Director of Agency Liaison, Office of Presidential Correspondence in the Carter White House.  Fortney also spent 12 years on Capitol Hill, where she was the legislative director for a member of the U.S. House of Representatives and the majority staff director for the Subcommittee on General Oversight and Investigations of the House Committee on Banking, Finance and Urban Affairs.   For the past 15 years, she has been actively involved with Women in Housing & Finance (WHF), an association of women and men who actively promote women in the fields of financial services and housing.  Fortney has served as WHF President and is currently President of its sister organization, the WHF Foundation which offers programs and sponsors events and volunteer opportunities to fulfill its mission to help women and families in the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area with guidance on housing and finance.

Said John Kolhoff, Chair of the NASCUS Board, “On behalf of the entire board, and both the regulator and industry membership, I would like to recognize Mary Martha’s leadership over a challenging period for both the regulators and the industry. Through this period of significant change she has been a leader in establishing strong dialogue amongst federal and state regulators and the institutions they supervise.”

“NASCUS, state regulators and state credit union officials are appreciative of Mary Martha’s tireless efforts on behalf of the dual charter during her tenure.  She has led NASCUS through an important period of credit union history and positioned NASCUS to continue to evolve with the industry as we look forward to the future,” stated NASCUS Advisory Chair Catherine Tierney.

“It has been my privilege as President and CEO to position NASCUS as a success and to bring the organization into the 21st Century.  I am proud of what NASCUS members and I have accomplished together.  I have been one of the luckiest people to have worked all this time with such dedicated regulators and credit union system leaders, to watch NASCUS grow to what the organization is today,” Fortney said.

“My many years of service, from the White House to Congress to NASCUS, have been most rewarding.  My passion will always be with the credit union system, but I feel it is time to move ahead.  Of course this is bittersweet, but change is good for both people and organizations.  I am excited by the next chapter and look forward to the future and to NASCUS’ continued evolution,” she added.

Fortney’s distinctive career will be honored as part of the proceedings at the 2014 NASCUS Annual State System Summit, September 10-12, in Nashville, Tennessee.

The NASCUS Board, working jointly with the Advisory Council, has begun the extensive work of establishing the profile for the attitude and aptitude necessary for the next CEO to continue building the NASCUS legacy.  Fortney’s replacement is expected to be named during the fourth quarter of 2014.  An executive search for her replacement has begun utilizing the services of O’Rourke and Associates. O’Rourke & Associates has been providing executive recruitment services to the credit union industry for the past 30 years and will be working closely with the Board of Directors and Advisory Council in representing this highly visible and unique leadership opportunity.

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