The CUInsight Experience podcast: Christina O’Brien – Building foundation (#87)

“It’s about growing and learning, and taking every opportunity that you’re afforded.” - Christina O’Brien

Thank you for tuning in to episode 87 of The CUInsight Experience podcast with your host, Randy Smith, co-founder of This episode is brought to you by our friends at PSCU. As the nation’s premier payments CUSO, PSCU proudly supports the success of more than 1,500 credit unions.

Over the last few months, credit unions have had to adapt to new ways of interacting with their members. On this week’s episode, I’m talking with Christina O’Brien, President and CEO of Robins Financial Credit Union in Georgia, about how her team has “weathered the storm” and why the pandemic has changed the way members will interact with credit unions in the future. 

Christina is having a great first year as President and CEO, despite having to deal with a global pandemic. Listen as she shares how she got her start in credit unions, how she’s grown as a leader during the pandemic, and what she believes credit unions need to change to stay relevant in the financial services industry. She also shares her thoughts on why credit unions can’t be afraid to change how they do business.

In the leadership and life hacks’ portion of the show, Christina and I talk about her leadership style, how it has changed over the years, and what her process is for making difficult decisions. We discuss a common myth about leadership, mistakes young leaders make, and building a good team. We also learn that when Christina has a day off, she likes to unplug with her family in a boat in the middle of a lake or work on one of her many DIY home-improvement projects.

Through the rapid-fire questions, we learn that Christina wanted to be an attorney when she grew up, and that Dr. Seuss’ Oh, the Places You’ll Go! is her go-to book to give to anyone graduating high school or college. We also learn that she never seems to sing the right words to songs. Christina’s final thoughts are to go for it and never turn down an opportunity given to you. This conversation was a ton of fun. Enjoy! 

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Books mentioned on The CUInsight Experience podcast: Book List 

How to find Joanne:
Christina O’Brien, President and CEO of Robins Financial Credit Union
Facebook | Instagram | LinkedIn

Show notes from this episode:
A big shout-out to our friends at PSCU, an amazing sponsor of The CUInsight Experience podcast. Thank you! 
Check out all the outstanding work that Christina and her team at Robins Financial Credit Union are doing here. 
Check out Macon Magazine article about Christina here
Shout-out: Robins Financial Credit Union Executive Team
Shout-out: John Rhea, Former President and CEO of Robins Financial Credit Union 
Shout-out: Christina’s Family
Shout-out: Jill Nowacki
Book mentioned: Oh, the Places You’ll Go! by Dr. Seuss 
Shout-out: Christina’s Grandson
Previous guests mentioned in this episode: Jill Nowacki (episodes 4, 18, 37, 64 & 82

In This Episode:

Randall Smith

Randall Smith

Randall Smith is the co-founder of, the host of The CUInsight Experience podcast, and a bit of a wanderlust. As one of the co-founders of CUInsight he looks ... Web: Details