Members First Credit Union announces the retirement of President/CEO Nicholas Kessenich

MIDLAND, MI (May 6, 2021) — The Board of Directors announced the retirement of President/CEO Nicholas Kessenich in November of 2020. Nick served as President/CEO for nearly 40 years.

He joined the credit union (at that time, it was known as Sub-Zero Employees Credit Union) in 1977.  In March of 1981, Nick joined the Board of Directors.  And when former President Dick Hurd suddenly passed away in December of 1981, Nick was approached by board member Gerald Ring who asked if he would be interested in managing the credit union.  Nick said “yes”!   When Nick began, there were 300 members and assets totaling $180,000.  Today the credit union has over 3,000 members and over $27 million in assets.  Nick announced his difficult decision to retire in the fall of 2020 due to illness which he has successfully overcome. There will be more information posted to the Members First Credit Union website on Nick’s illustrious career in the coming months.

The Board is excited to announce the promotion of Jennifer Kutz to the role of President/CEO of Members First Credit Union.  Jennifer joined the credit union in February of 2014 as the Marketing Specialist.  She was most recently promoted to VP of Operations in October of 2018.  “Jennifer worked very closely with Nick over her tenure at the credit union and we are confident in her ability to continue the legacy that Nick leaves behind,” said Ron Kluge, Board Chairman.

As Vice President, Operations, Jennifer was responsible for the office’s day-to-day operations, including staff training and supervising, new product and service development for members, and strategic planning for the credit union.  She graduated from CUNA’s Management School and The Wisconsin Credit Union League’s Leadership Institute in 2018 and became a Credit Union Development Educator in 2019.

“I am so lucky to have gotten to work alongside Nick and to see his love and dedication to the credit union, and it’s members.  For him and the board to entrust me to continue his legacy means more than I can put into words and gives me big shoes I will work hard to fill.”

About Members First Credit Union

 At Members First Credit Union, we remain dedicated to supporting the communities we've grown up in for over 86 years.  We promise to be trustworthy, caring, and enthusiastic to help you succeed.  Our over 62,000 members count on us to serve them and their communities; our 240+ employees share that passion for service. Learn more at


Rachel Hilbrandt
Marketing Communications Specialist



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