Michigan Credit Union League recognizes 2020 award winners during virtual ceremony

Outstanding credit union leaders and organizations awarded during Michigan Credit Union League and Michigan Credit Union Foundation’s annual ceremony.

LANSING, MI (October 28, 2020) — On Oct. 15, this year’s International Credit Union Day, the Michigan Credit Union League (MCUL) held a virtual awards ceremony to recognize the 2020 League and Michigan Credit Union Foundation (MCUF) Award Winners.

“This ceremony is usually held during our Annual Convention & Exposition, and holding this ceremony over a video call with the Michigan credit union community is just one of the many ways we’ve been able to use technology to adjust to our current environment,” said MCUL CEO Dave Adams. “Celebrating the outstanding achievements and leaders in our movement over the past year is an important part of how we recognize credit union champions and share their innovation and commitment with the rest of the movement.”

MCUF Award for Excellence in Consumer EducationKelly Hatler, CP Financial Credit Union
Hatler has been an inspiration to many students through her work in financial education over the past two decades. Kelly’s legacy is ingrained in every aspect of CP Federal’s financial education outreach and she is noticed and remembered throughout the community for her work in the program.

MCUF Credit Union Community AwardMichael Keast, Michigan One Community Credit Union
Keast has been instrumental in shaping the culture and improving student achievement in the school system. He’s demonstrated his ability as a seasoned leader who faces challenges head-on to facilitate positive change.

Chapter Effectiveness Award: Southern Michigan Chapter
The So-Mi Chapter of Credit Unions brought together nine credit unions in 2019 to make life easier for many struggling with medical debt in the Southern Michigan area. This gift, which has helped those most in need, was not only given as relief, but as a start to a future of financial health.

Innovation Award: PFCU (large-asset category)
PFCU’s new MARC program provides examples of how to think outside the box to provide and exhibit the credit union difference to members. In other words, not only is this program innovative, it also inspires and emboldens others to be innovative.

Innovation Award: Extra Credit Union (mid-asset category)
The credit union started the Extra Credit Union Experiential Mobile Unit, which allowed them to physically deliver education and expertise to the people, rather than waiting for them to come to their door. This innovative model has also created increased opportunities for community involvement, staff involvement, financial literacy and improved services to their members.

Young Professional of the YearJeffery Kusler, Journey Federal Credit Union
Over the past decade, Kusler has grown from a city volunteer out of undergrad to the credit union’s Planning Commissioner, and along each step of the way, he has enlivened each environment he has been a part of.

Professional of the YearPat Spyke, LAFCU
Spyke’s recent collaboration with the Lansing Regional Chamber of Commerce on many different issues, as well as LAFCU’s support for members of UAW Local 652 show a true support for and dedication to the vibrancy of Lansing residents.

Outstanding Credit Union of the Year: Northland Area Federal Credit Union (large-asset size)
Northland Area Federal Credit Union, is noteworthy for their wide participation in community programs, including their support of Hospice of Helping Hands’ veteran hospice program. Each year, Northland Area employees fundraise thousands of dollars and donate more than 2,000 hours of service to assist and pay tribute to veterans.

Outstanding Credit Union of the Year: American 1 Credit Union (mid-asset size)
American 1 Credit Union, made significant strides in 2019 to be a beacon of education and financial relief in the Southern Michigan communities they serve, as well as reliant providers of financial literacy for students.

Outstanding Credit Union of the YearThornapple Credit Union (small-asset category)
Throughout 2019, Thornapple was instrumental in helping many members escape from payday loan debt, knowing the cyclical damage they can cause, instead offering them education and smart loan products. Thornapple knows that education starts in the classroom, which is why their dedication to financial literacy spans each grade K-12, with specific programs tailored for each age.

Distinguished Service Award: Dean Trudeau, Public Service Credit Union
During the last two decades of Trudeau’s leadership, Public Service has grown from about $70 million in assets to over $250 million, currently. He has a reputation with fellow staff and colleagues as a terrific collaborator, mentor and friend, as well as someone who lets his actions speak for him.

Distinguished Service Award: Karen Church, ELGA Credit Union
Church’s focus has been on creating a strong culture within the credit union, through mentorship and a shared vision to help members succeed. The growth ELGA has experienced, as well as the many awards along the way, has been the result of that focus.

For more information on these award winners, including their acceptance speeches, you can watch the ceremony here.

Looking ahead, nominations for 2021 MCUL/MCUF Awards are now open. Think about that person, credit union or chapter you know that has gone above and beyond this year and make a nomination for next year’s awards ceremony. Find more information here.

About Michigan Credit Union League & Affiliates

Organized in 1934, the Michigan Credit Union League & Affiliates [] (MCUL) is a trade association representing Michigan’s credit unions. Based in Lansing, Michigan, MCUL works to strengthen the credit union community and its image by providing advocacy on important issues, coordinating cooperative initiatives and by providing high-quality solutions that help credit unions succeed and enrich the lives of their members.


Shawn Glinis
734.793.3449 |

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