Unitus Community Credit Union announces retirement and key leadership promotion

Unitus promotes Jessica Brown to its executive leadership team as Chief Human Resources Officer announces retirement

PORTLAND, OR (October 31, 2023)Unitus Community Credit Union is  celebrating a much-deserved  retirement and promotion from  within the organization. After 16  years of exemplary service, Gayle  Evans, SVP/Chief Human Resources  Officer (CHRO), is retiring. Unitus is  promoting VP of People and  Culture, Jessica Brown, to the  Executive Leadership Team to take  on the CHRO role. In addition to  executive leadership duties, Brown  will oversee Unitus’ Human  Resources, Organizational  Development, and workplace  Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion  (DEI) functions.

Ms. Evans joined Unitus in 2007 after serving in human resources leadership roles at The Standard  and Pacific Health Horizons. During her time at Unitus, Gayle helped the organization grow,  transitioned employee benefits, and led DEI efforts across the organization.

“I am so honored to have served Unitus, its employees, members, and community,” reflected Ms.  Evans. “It was a difficult decision to retire but I know the credit union is in good hands with Jessica.  I’m looking forward to celebrating her achievements as I continue to support Unitus as a member.” 

In 2022, the Portland Business Journal named Ms. Evans a “Woman of Influence” in its annual  awards. Gayle’s advocacy, volunteerism, and mentorship will be missed at the credit union. 

“Her external involvement with the credit union industry, state policy making, business groups, and  communities will have a lasting impact,” explained Steven Stapp, President and CEO of Unitus  Community Credit Union. “We look forward to continuing to work with her in her role as a Board  Trustee at Western Oregon University where we’ve developed a deep partnership in supporting the  Bilingual Teacher Scholars Program.” 

Jessica Brown, SHRMCP, has more than 18 years’ experience in human resources and holds a  master’s in business administration. In her 4+ years at Unitus, she’s significantly improved the  employee service experience and implemented new benefits such as the student loan repayment program and new wellness offerings. Ms. Brown also guided her team through record-level

recruitment volume and improved new hire onboarding while navigating the pandemic, guiding  Unitus’ transition to hybrid work models.  

“We are truly making meaningful change in the People and Culture department at Unitus,” said Ms.  Brown. “From creating remote work opportunities to improving employee benefits and building a  culture of care, our team is committed to serving our staff in the spirit of our shared values. I’m so  grateful for the opportunity to take on this new role and to continue developing an engaged and  highly-qualified workforce at Unitus.” 

“While we will certainly miss Gayle, we are fortunate that we have a leader in Jessica Brown who  can step up and assume new responsibilities,” said Mr. Stapp. “Jessica’s promotion is another  example of the career development culture we’ve created at Unitus through which we focus on  opportunities within our organization to grow employees into leadership roles.” 

Ms. Brown begins her role as Unitus’ Chief Human Resource Officer on November 3, 2023.

About Unitus Community Credit Union

At Unitus, we’re dedicated to improving lives in the communities we serve. As a member-owned  local credit union, we invest in people by doing the right thing. Through partnerships with nonprofit  organizations, we provide support for community groups through volunteerism and financial  donations. Our 104,000 members count on us to serve them and their communities; our 300+ employees share that passion for service. Learn about the local impact Unitus makes by visiting


Autumn Foster

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