The CUInsight Experience podcast: Denise Wymore – Question everything (#49)

“We are only limited by our imagination.” - Denise Wymore

Welcome to episode 49 of The CUInsight Experience podcast. Hosted by Randy Smith, co-founder of Today Randy welcomes Denise Wymore to the show. Denise has been in the credit union industry for over 30 years and with NACUSO for almost four. She is responsible for membership development and helping CUSOs tell their stories. She lives in New Mexico, with her husband Mark and two dogs, and she is also a Volunteer Firefighter/EMT for the town of Cochiti Lake.

Denise and Randy discuss NACUSO and cooperative business-minded CUSOs. Denise believes credit unions are dying of old age because they rely too heavily on credit scores for new members. She chats about the credit unions losing sight of the three C’s Character, Capacity, and Collateral and talks about why she believes they need to bring the focus back.

Denise speaks about the six cooperative principle, cooperation among cooperatives, like share branching. She says that credit unions need a differentiator, something that will set us apart and be a national brand.

Question everything is a phrase that Denise uses all of the time. She says that if you don’t, you won’t know whether pigs can fly or not. Mistakes are ok, everyone makes them but learn from them and don’t make the same mistake twice. Denise believes that if everyone did something nice for a stranger every day, the world would be a much better place.

Listen in to this conversation with Denise. She is an open and funny individual with vast experiences, and if you don’t learn something from her, you weren’t trying. Enjoy!

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How to find Denise:
Denise Wymore, Director/Membership & Advocacy Development Officer at NACUSO
Twitter | Linkedin | Facebook 

Show notes from this episode:
Check out all the great work going on at NACUSO.
Denise is a longtime contributor of the CUInsight Community. Check out her writing here.
Shout-out: Filene Research Institute
Shout-out: Bill Cheney
Will we see you next year at the 2020 NACUSO Network Conference?
Shout-out: Winner of the NACUSO Next Big Idea competition, Bolun Li and his company Zogo Finance.
Shout-out: Robbie Young
Shout-out: Finovate where Zogo Finance was named best in show.
Shout-out: The Cochiti Lake Fire and EMS Denise and her husband volunteer.
Shout-out: Mark Sadowski. Denise’s husband, volunteer EMT, and CFO of State Employees Credit Union of New Mexico.
Shout-out: CUNA Management School and Southeast CUNA Management School.
Shout-out: Jack and Shawna at NACUSO
Shout-out: CU Ledger
Shout-out: to our friends at CUES
Shout-out: Victor Corro
Shout-out: Denise’s two mentors Sarah Canepa Bang and Tom Sargent
Shout-out: Ben & Jerry’s – Read their story that Denise mentioned here.
Album mentioned: Tapestry by Carol King
Book mentioned: Orbiting the Giant Hairball by Gordon MacKenzie
Previous guests mentioned in this episode: Bill Cheney, Jill Nowacki (episodes 4, 18 & 37)
You can find all past episodes of The CUInsight Experience here

In This Episode:
[01:17] – Denise, Welcome to the show!
[01:47] – She discusses her rise in the credit union industry.
[03:04] – Denise believes that the credit union is dying of old age because they rely on credit scores.
[05:00] – What gets you excited when you leave CUSO conferences?
[06:02] – Denise speaks about a teen program designed to bring younger people into credit unions.
[07:26] – She tells us the story of how she became a Volunteer Firefighter and EMT.
[09:24] – What needs to change in the credit union industry that needs to change to stay relevant?
[11:17] – Denise says what inspired her to take her position at NACUSO was the way she fit with the team and their principles.
[12:19] – How has the inspiration changed over the last few years with time on the job?
[15:40] – She speaks about the traits she sees in leaders and who helped her the most in her career.
[18:08] – Is fail faster something we need to see in the industry today? Do things need to be tested at the branch before being released company-wide?
[19:37] – Question everything, is what she says all the time.
[21:33] – Denise says that she is ok with mistakes. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes, but learn from them and don’t make them twice.
[24:14] – If it’s not fun, why do it…. It is a slogan she has lived by.
[25:26] – What hack do you use that helps when you hit a wall and can’t figure something out?
[27:43] – When Denise has time off, she hikes, it is her favorite thing.
[29:12] – When was the first time you got into memorable trouble?
[29:49] – Her daily routine is coffee and wordscapes. She likes to have a win first thing in the morning.
[30:34] – Denise’s favorite album hands down is Carol King’s Tapestry.
[31:03] – Her favorite book of all time is Orbiting The Giant Hairball.
[32:02] – Personal relationships are essential to her now but weren’t that important when she was younger.
[32:50] – When you hear the word success, which is the first person that comes to mind?
[33:36] – If you can do something nice for a stranger every day, the world would be a better place.

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