STCU’s Tom Johnson wins NWCUA’s Lifetime Achievement Award

14 credit unions, professionals honored, 18 credit unions recognized for “Top of the Hill Advocacy

SEATAC, WA (October 26, 2017) — Recognized as an “extraordinary credit union leader with a lifetime of accomplishments to celebrate,” STCU President/CEO Tom Johnson was honored with the Lifetime Achievement Award, at the Northwest Credit Union Association’s (NWCUA) 2017 MAXX Convention.

“Tom has seized every opportunity to propel the Credit Union Movement forward,” said Troy Stang, NWCUA President and CEO. “He consistently leads by example to serve his local community, engage with elected officials, and spread good news about the credit union difference.”

Johnson’s path to the CEO’s office is a bit unusual, even in a movement populated with talent and passion, Stang noted. Johnson first served as a volunteer member of STCU’s Board of Directors while he was an executive at a local university. His dedication to the Movement led him to accept fulltime employment at STCU ten years ago, and he became CEO in 2011. The Liberty Lake, Washington-based credit union serves 166,000 members and protects more than $2.5 billion in assets. Johnson is known as a fierce credit union advocate and earned the NWCUA’s Washington Advocate of the Year Award in 2015. He was recognized nationally for leading a “Love Letter” campaign in 2013, which resulted in 15,000 people sending positive credit union messages to Congress. Johnson has received numerous regional honors for his work in the business and education communities.

For the first time in the NWCUA Awards program history, a team captured the Innovation and Impact Award.  Medford, Oregon-based Rogue Credit Union was honored for its Rogue Management School.

“Rogue created a unique, two-year program that grew leaders internally,” Stang said. “As a result, the credit union developed a pool of managers who not only demonstrate technical and professional leadership expertise, but have also been steeped in the credit union’s culture.”

Winning NWCUA’s newly minted Distinguished Director Award was Roger Mauldin from Tukwila, Washington-based BECU. Mauldin is an ardent advocate who has educated state and federal lawmakers about credit unions as a CUNA Governmental Affairs Conference and Hike the Hill attendee. He has served on the BECU Board of Directors since 1983.

“Roger upholds his credit union’s history and cooperative values while advocating for innovation and change,” noted Stang.

Nick Fugal, Chief Financial Officer of Nampa, Idaho-based Clarity Credit Union, received the Young Credit Union Leader Award. Fugal is a former CUNA GAC “crasher” and is actively engaged as a member of the NWCUA’s Idaho Governmental Affairs Committee. He is an honors graduate of the Western CUNA Management School, helped to establish Climb Idaho, the Gem State’s young professionals group, and helped the NWCUA launch its Northwest Young Professionals Network this year.

NWCUA honored the following credit union champions as Advocates of the Year:

  • Connie Miller, CEO, Icon Credit Union, Boise Idaho. Miller implemented advocacy and political fundraising training for the entire staff, co-chairs the NWCUA’s Idaho Governmental Affairs Committee, and actively participates in all key NWCUA advocacy initiatives.
  • Gene Pelham, President and CEO, Rogue Credit Union, Medford, Oregon. Pelham has organized internal and external Governmental Affairs Committees at Rogue, and invested in advocacy training for all staff.  He has served as Co-Chair of the NWCUA’s Oregon Governmental Affairs Committee.
  • Jeff Kennedy, CEO, TwinStar Credit Union, Lacey, Washington. TwinStar shares advocacy information not only with staff, but with its members. Kennedy, current Co-Chair of NWCUA’s Washington Governmental Affairs Committee, has personally hosted fundraising events for candidates who support credit unions.

NWCUA presented the following credit unions with CUNA awards for financial education and social responsibility programs:

  • Gesa Credit Union, Richland, Washington—Alphonse Desjardins Youth Financial Education Award, Dora Maxwell Social Responsibility Award, and Louise Herring Philosophy in Action Award.
  • Clackamas Federal Credit Union, Milwaukie, Oregon—Alphonse Desjardins Youth Financial Education Award.
  • St. Helens Community Credit Union, St. Helens, Oregon—Alphonse Desjardins Youth Financial Education Award, Alphonse Desjardins Adult Financial Education Award, and Dora Maxwell Social Responsibility Award.
  • Peninsula Credit Union, Shelton, Washington—Dora Maxwell Social Responsibility Award.
  • Our Community Credit Union, Shelton, Washington—Dora Maxwell Social Responsibility Award.
  • Mid Oregon Credit Union, Bend, Oregon—Dora Maxwell Social Responsibility Award.
  • Unitus Community Credit Union, Portland, Oregon—Dora Maxwell Social Responsibility Award.
  • Horizon Credit Union, Spokane Valley, Washington—Louise Herring Philosophy in Action Award.
  • Rogue Credit Union, Medford, Oregon—Louise Herring Philosophy in Action Award.

NWCUA presented its “LEAP” award to the Spokane Chapter of Credit Unions for overall excellence in leadership, education, advocacy, and philosophy in action.  Honorable mention awards were given to the Southwest Washington Chapter of Credit Unions for educational programming, the Southwest Chapter of Idaho Credit Unions for excellence in Leadership, and the Willamette Chapter of Oregon Credit Unions for its work in educational programming and philosophy in action.

Six credit unions from each of the three states the NWCUA represents were presented with “Top of the Hill” honors for consistently excelling in advocacy initiatives. There are:

  • Beehive Federal Credit Union, CapEd Credit Union, East Idaho Credit Union, P1FCU, and Simplot Employees Credit Union in Idaho;
  • Central Willamette Community Credit Union, First Tech Federal Credit Union, Oregon State Credit Union, Providence Federal Credit Union, Rivermark Community Credit Union, and Rogue Credit Union in Oregon; and

Fibre Federal Credit Union, Newrizons Federal Credit Union, Numerica Credit Union, Seattle Credit Union, Sound Credit Union, and TwinStar Credit Union in Washington.

About Northwest Credit Union Association

The Northwest Credit Union Association is the trade association representing more than 175 not-for- profit, cooperative credit unions in Idaho, Oregon, and Washington, and their 8.1 million consumer members. As not-for-profit cooperatives, credit unions look out for their members’ financial well-being. Everyone should open their eyes to a credit union.  For more information, please visit:


Lynn Heider
503.329.7208 |

Jenny Miller
208.713.9596 (Mobile)

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