Mountain West Credit Union Association Issues Statement on the Resignation of CFPB Director Cordray

Denver, CO (November 15, 2017) – Scott Earl, President and CEO of the Mountain West Credit Union Association, has issued the following statement regarding the announcement of Richard Cordray, Director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, stepping down from the Bureau by the end of the month:

“The Mountain West Credit Union Association has 125 credit unions representing 3.2 million members across the states of Arizona, Colorado and Wyoming. We appreciate the dedication that Director Cordray exhibited as head of the CFPB and we wish him well in the future. As we move forward, we hope to see more progress to showcase that credit unions are the best financial partner for consumers, that credit unions exist to protect the financial interests of their members and that the CFPB will work to issue rules that help pro-consumer financial institutions. We look forward to working with whomever is chosen to lead the CFPB after Director Cordray.”

About the Mountain West Credit Union Association

The Mountain West Credit Union Association is the regional tri-state trade association representing 125 member credit unions, 3.2 million credit union members and $38 billion in assets throughout Arizona, Colorado and Wyoming. Not-for-profit in nature, credit unions provide low-cost financial services to their members. Founded in 2011, the Mountain West Credit Union Association serves and supports the interests of member credit unions through advocacy, community outreach, education and training, public affairs, regulatory and compliance services and strategic partnerships. The Mountain West Credit Union Association is affiliated with Credit Union National Association (CUNA), World Council of Credit Unions (WOCCU) and CUNA Mutual Group. Follow us on twitter at twitter.com/mwcua or on Facebook at facebook.com/mwcua. To learn more about credit unions visit AsmarterChoice.org.

Mountain West Credit Union Association Joins CUNA class-action lawsuit against Equifax

DENVER, Co. & PHOENIX, Az. (Oct. 31, 2017) – The Mountain West Credit Union Association (MWCUA) announced today that it is joining the Credit Union National Association’s (CUNA) class-action lawsuit against credit-monitoring firm Equifax. The decision was made in the best interest of the Association’s 125 credit unions and more than 3.2 million credit union members in Arizona, Colorado and Wyoming.

The breach at Equifax put 146 million U.S. customers’ personal information at risk and included 209,000 credit card account numbers. That risk is passed on to credit unions and other financial institutions because Equifax failed to secure its website, ignored warnings from security experts and delayed reporting the breach, which was only partially disclosed Sept. 7, 2017.

“We have not seen a data breach of this magnitude before and the potential impacts to credit unions and their members is unprecedented,” said Scott Earl, president/CEO of MWCUA. “The Association joined this suit both to help protect our affiliated credit unions and to hold Equifax accountable for the fallout from this breach. Protecting members is a top priority of all credit unions. We may not know the full impact of this extensive breach for years. The costs to credit unions will be significant.”

Credit unions will incur financial losses related to crisis services such as canceling and reissuing compromised cards, reimbursing consumers for fraudulent charges, increasing fraudulent activity monitoring, taking appropriate action to mitigate the risk of identity theft and fraudulent loans, sustaining reputational harm, and notifying consumers of potential fraudulent activity. The MWCUA encourages credit unions to join the suit to help recover the costs of resources and damages likely to be associated with the Equifax breach.

“The information accessed and stolen includes names, Social Security numbers, birth dates, addresses, and in some instances, driver’s license numbers,” said Earl. “Credit and debit card information for approximately 209,000 consumers also was stolen, further increasing the potential for damage to members and credit unions. We believe we need to stand up for the rights of our credit unions and their members.”

About the Mountain West Credit Union Association

The Mountain West Credit Union Association is the regional tri-state trade association representing 125 member credit unions, 3.2 million credit union members and $38 billion in assets throughout Arizona, Colorado and Wyoming. Not-for-profit in nature, credit unions provide low-cost financial services to their members. Founded in 2011, the Mountain West Credit Union Association serves and supports the interests of member credit unions through advocacy, community outreach, education and training, public affairs, regulatory and compliance services and strategic partnerships. The Mountain West Credit Union Association is affiliated with Credit Union National Association (CUNA), World Council of Credit Unions (WOCCU) and CUNA Mutual Group. Follow us on twitter at twitter.com/mwcua or on Facebook at facebook.com/mwcua. To learn more about credit unions visit AsmarterChoice.org.

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Media Contact: Patti Hazlett, Director of Public Affairs

phazlett@mwcua.com

Landings Credit Union Donates Over 100 Volunteer Hours

Tempe, AZ October 2017 – Landings Credit Union turned International Credit Union Day into a week long celebration with staff volunteering in the community October 16th-21st, demonstrating the credit union philosophy of “People Helping People.”

40 out of 62 staff members, in every department, participated in the week’s events. Over five days, they volunteered 100 hours to a few of their favorite non-profits.

  • Stuffing over 1172 school readiness kits for United Way
  • Packed meals for Feed My Starving Children
  • Sorting food and packing food boxes for Tempe Community Action Agency
  • Helping The Centers for Habilitation (TCH) set-up for their major fundraising event
  • Volunteering as table hosts for TCH’s Monster Mash event

 

 

 

 

 

 

Additionally, on International Credit Union Day (also Landings 64th birthday) staff shared the credit union difference, by purchasing coffee for every customer in the walk up or drive through at the family-owned coffee shop, Extreme Bean Coffee Company.

Margaret Hunnicutt, President and CEO of Landings said “Our staff loves helping in the community, and it was their idea to expand International Credit Union Day into a week of volunteering. There is really no better way to embrace the credit union spirit than to give to our community.”

About Landings Credit Union

Landings Credit Union, based in Tempe, Ariz., serves a wide range of members including students, faculty, staff and family for all schools in Arizona, along with over 400 select employee groups. The current asset size is $160 million with more than 14,000 members. Landings Credit Union has been serving members for more than 60 years, helping them with all of their financial needs. For more information on Landings Credit Union, please visit landingscu.org

Contact:    Tara Roether
        Marketing Specialist
        480-967-9475
        troether@landingscu.org

Swirlds and CULedger Collaborate to Deliver High Performance, Secure, Distributed Applications to Credit Unions

The Collaboration Delivers “Banking Grade” Security to Applications Built on CULedger

DALLAS–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Swirlds, creators of the hashgraph distributed consensus platform, and CULedger, a credit union consortium supported by the efforts of the Credit Union National Association (CUNA) and the Mountain West Credit Union Association (MWCUA), today announced an agreement whereby CULedger will use Swirlds’ hashgraph technology as a key component of CULedger’s permissioned, distributed, shared ledger platform for credit unions.

CULedger and Swirlds are making it simple for application developers to build distributed applications that can be used by any number of credit unions. Swirlds hashgraph provides the shared storage (distributed ledger) for these applications, reducing the opportunity for errors, improving efficiency, and ensuring a consistent view of data by all parties.

“After evaluation of numerous distributed ledger technologies, it quickly became clear to us that Swirlds delivers both the performance and banking grade security that our members will demand of shared applications and data stores,” said Rick Cranston, VP of Innovation for MWCUA, and member of the CULedger steering committee. “Our members are interested in building numerous distributed ledger applications to drive revenue, improve member service, and reduce fraud. Swirlds hashgraph will enable them to build and leverage distributed applications, while feeling highly confident of the security and capacity of these applications.”

Swirlds hashgraph provides unparalleled performance compared to alternative platforms that can only process thousands of transactions per second. The hashgraph can process 100,000’s of transactions per second, making it possible for CULedger to directly address a much broader set of use cases.

Swirlds hashgraph is the only platform that meets the requirements for fully distributed trust in a distributed ledger and provides the highest level of security in the market by achieving all four of the criteria for banking-grade security, including:

  • Immutability of Transaction History – No single party can change the order of the transactions applied to the ledger.
  • DDoS (Distributed Denial of Service) Resilience – No single party can disrupt the flow of transactions throughout the ledger, making it DDoS resilient. Competing platforms are highly susceptible to DDoS attacks. Using competing platforms, if even a single member of the network is compromised or malicious, then the attacker can direct a DDoS attack against a single computer that disrupts the flow of transactions for the entire network. This is not possible with hashgraph.
  • Fair Access – No single party can prevent the flow of transactions into the ledger. Competing platforms put the power of which transactions are accepted into the hands of a single party.
  • Fair Ordering – No single party can influence the order of transactions that the network ultimately agrees on. Competing platforms put the power of transaction order into the hands of a single party. With hashgraph, timestamps on transactions are determined by the community as a whole, not a single leader.

“CULedger is an incredibly innovative project, which is helping to lay the foundation for the future of credit unions,” said Mance Harmon, Swirlds Founder and CEO. “We are extremely pleased to be partnering with them to help credit unions remain competitive, aggressive, and serve the needs of their members more efficiently.”

The patented hashgraph consensus algorithm, developed by Swirlds Co-Founder and CTO Leemon Baird, uses an entirely new protocol to enable distributed and decentralized communities to reach consensus in a fast and secure way. The hashgraph algorithm is resilient to DDoS attacks and ensures mathematically proven fairness in the absolute ordering of transactions. Further technical details of the hashgraph algorithm can be found at the resources below:

About Swirlds

Swirlds is a platform to build and run shared worlds — fully distributed applications that harness the power of the cloud without servers. Applications built on the Swirlds platform create trust in peer-to-peer networks without a central server, leveraging the hashgraph consensus algorithm to deliver high transaction throughput, low consensus latency, and fairness in transaction order. Rapidly gaining traction across a wide swath of categories from gaming to online collaboration to financial services, Swirlds is building the trust layer of the internet by enabling developers to create fair, fast and secure applications. www.swirlds.com | @Swirlds.

About CULedger:

CULedger is a credit union industry initiative for developing innovative applications of distributed ledger technology. Supported by the efforts of the Credit Union National Association, the Mountain West Credit Union Association, Best Innovation Group, credit union system partners and credit unions, CULedger will benefit credit unions and their members by reducing risks associated with cybersecurity and fraud, improving member experience and cutting costs. For more information, visit culedger.com.

©Swirlds 2016. Swirlds and hashgraph are trademarks of Swirlds Inc.

Contacts

For Swirlds
Zenobia Godschalk, 650-269-8315
zenobia@zagcommunications.com
or
For CULedger
Vicki Christner, 202-329-9950
vchristner@cuna.coop

Mountain West Credit Unions Celebrate International Credit Union Week in Mighty Ways

Breakfast and budgets and beauty, oh my! To celebrate 2017 International Credit Union week, October 16-20, the Mountain West Credit Union Association (MWCUA) challenged its regional chapters to give back to their communities in a charitable way.

The participating credit unions supplied breakfast, made donations to various charities, served refreshments in their branches, completed a beautification project and taught financial literacy classes, and partnered with Credit Unions 4 Kids on projects.

In all, more than 13 credit unions, chapters, and the Phoenix office of MWCUA office participated. The day of giving resulted in 336 volunteer hours and more than $11,000 raised for local

charities. Those credit unions and chapters participating were: Public Service Credit Union (CO), Valley of the Sun (AZ) Chapter, Arizona Central Credit Union, Deer Valley Credit Union (AZ), Vantage West Credit Union (AZ), Alahambra Credit Union (AZ), Blue Federal Credit Union (CO & WY), Pima Federal Credit Union (AZ), Ent Credit Union (CO), Meridian Trust Federal Credit Union (WY), AEA Federal Credit Union (AZ), First Credit Union (AZ), and staff from the MWCUA Phoenix office.

International Credit Union (ICU) Day® has been celebrated since 1948. It is recognized to reflect upon the credit union movement’s history and to promote its achievements. It is a time to honor those who have dedicated their lives to the movement, recognize the hard work of those working in the credit union industry and show members our appreciation.

Among the activities were:

  • AEA Federal Credit Union made classroom presentations with United Way and helped Crossroad Missions with activities.
  • Alhambra Credit Union donated 40 cases of water to Simpson Elementary School for its fall carnival.
  • Arizona Central Credit Union donated to the New Isaac Family Resources Center.
  • Blue Federal Credit Union taught a financial literacy class, sponsored movies in the park, helped a radio pledge drive, and provided harvest festival support.
  • Deer Valley Credit Union combined ICUD with Phoenix Children’s Hospital’s” Shop for Miracles” one day CU4Kids fundraiser and all branches served cookies and refreshments to celebrate both events.
  • Ent Credit Union provided volunteers for A Precious Child, and  Early Connection.  They also made a donation to the United Way.
  • First Credit Union made a donation to a local food pantry.
  • Meridian Trust Federal Credit Union made donations to help treat childhood cancer, as well as donations to individual charities.
  • MWCUA (Phoenix) provided the Joshua Tree Feeding Program with hygiene kit items.
  • Pima Federal Credit Union donated to a local diaper bank and donated 200 children’s books.
  • Public Service Credit Union Public Service was the Foundation breakfast sponsor for Thompson Education Foundation.
  • Valley of the Sun Chapter collected items and donated to a local food pantry.
  • Vantage West Credit Union taught a budgeting class with local organization, participated in the United Days of Caring beautification project with Emerge, donated preschool & kindergarten books to replenish their library, and participated in walks with the Make-a-Wish Foundation and a local Alzheimer’s organization.

Each credit union expressed thankfulness in their ability to participate in the events. It was a true testament to the credit union philosophy of “People Helping People” and engaging in the communities they serve.

About the Mountain West Credit Union Association

The Mountain West Credit Union Association is the regional tri-state trade association representing 124 member credit unions, 3.2 million credit union members and $38 billion in assets throughout Arizona, Colorado and Wyoming. Not-for-profit in nature, credit unions provide low-cost financial services to their members. Founded in 2011, the Mountain West Credit Union Association serves and supports the interests of member credit unions through advocacy, community outreach, education and training, public affairs, regulatory and compliance services and strategic partnerships. The Mountain West Credit Union Association is affiliated with Credit Union National Association (CUNA), World Council of Credit Unions (WOCCU) and CUNA Mutual Group. Follow us on twitter at twitter.com/mwcua or on Facebook at facebook.com/mwcua. To learn more about credit unions visit AsmarterChoice.org.

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Haxtun Community FCU Has Ribbon Cutting

Haxtun Community Federal Credit Union (Haxtun, CO) was organized in 1938 and has been a benefit to its community from the very beginning.  For example, when fire ravaged its community, the credit union was at the center of helping folks get back on their feet.  Earlier this year, they began a major remodel of their office.  The original building was relocated to their current address, it was a former small restaurant and an old building. In the process of the remodel, they discovered old tin ceiling tiles that they effectively incorporated into the design. It shouldn’t surprise anyone that this mainstay in the community used all local contractors. On International Credit Union Day (Oct. 19, 2017) they celebrated with a ribbon cutting ceremony with the Chamber of Commerce, an all-day open house, refreshments and drawings for giveaways. Staff includes Kristin Hadeen (manager), Talya Campbell (Asst. mgr) and Lakesha Hershfeldt (member service rep).

 

About the Haxtun Community Federal Credit Union

The Haxtun Community Federal Credit Union is organized to serve people who live, work, or worship in parts of Northeastern Colorado and their immediate families. As a community based financial institution owned and operated by our members, our purpose is to provide financial advice and a competitively priced line of financial products and services, while at the same time building an adequate capital base. The Haxtun Community Federal Credit Union was organized in April of 1938 as the Haxtun CO-OP Credit Union.  It was a federally chartered community credit union.  The original membership consisted of 12 members.  These members were farmers that wanted to help the rural community of Haxtun.  There were 7 original board members, 3 credit committee members, and 3 supervisory committee members.

VANTAGE WEST WINS 1ST PLACE IN 2017 DORA MAXWELL, LOUISE HERRING AWARDS

 TUCSON, Arizona. – Vantage West Credit Union, southern Arizona’s largest credit union, won 1st Place in the 2017 Dora Maxwell Social Responsibility Community Service Award and Louise Herring Philosophy-In-Action Member Service Award (Over $1B Asset Category). These awards recognize credit union initiatives showcasing involvement in the community and a commitment to helping  members.

The Mountain West Credit Union Association (MWCUA) and the Credit Union National Association (CUNA) sponsored the awards, which were presented on October 18, during the International Credit Union Day celebration held by the Southern Arizona Chapter of Credit Unions.

“Vantage West is committed to fostering thriving communities and serving the needs of our membership. We believe that when our members and the communities thrive, we thrive. It is in this spirit that we embark on collaborative efforts that benefit both our membership and the communities we serve,” said Robert D. Ramirez, Vantage West President and CEO.

Vantage West Wins 1st Place, Dora Maxwell Award for “A Toy Drive to Remember”

The Dora Maxwell Award, inspired by credit union pioneer Dora Maxwell, is given to a credit union for performing noteworthy social responsibility projects within the community.

For its winning entry, Vantage West partnered with Children’s Clinics of Southern Arizona in holding a “Holiday Toy Drive to Remember.” The toy drive benefited children of families living below poverty level, who otherwise would not have had Christmas presents. As a result of the generosity of credit union employees and members, Vantage West collected toys for more than 2,000 children for the holidays.

 

 

 

 

The Louise Herring Award recognizes a credit union’s efforts to materially improve members’ lives through internal programs and services that mirror the credit union philosophy of “people helping people.” The award is given in honor of Louise Herring, an active supporter, organizer and champion of credit unions who believed credit unions should work in a practical manner to better peoples’ lives.

Representatives from Vantage West and the Anti-Skimming Alliance receive the Louise Herring Award for its 1st Place win

Vantage West won the Louise Herring Award for its involvement in an Anti-Skimming Alliance with the Arizona Department of Agriculture’s Weights and Measures Division and law enforcement. The Alliance was formed in response to the alarming number of card skimmers found last year in Arizona gas pumps. In the summer of 2016 alone, Vantage West helped identify 13 locations with more than 26 skimmers between Tucson, Casa Grande and Phoenix, and helped prevent nearly $200,000 in fraudulent activity.

As state-level winners of the Dora Maxwell and Louise Herring Awards, Vantage West’s entries will move forward to compete with other top entries for national recognition. National winners will be announced at the CUNA Governmental Affairs Conference in February 2018.

2017 has been a big year for Vantage West, as the credit union was recently named Mountain West Credit Union Association’s Credit Union of the Year and also won a record number of awards, including Best Bank/Credit Union in the Arizona Daily Star Readers’ Choice Awards poll.

About Vantage West Credit Union

Vantage West Credit Union is a $1.9-billion financial institution and the largest in southern Arizona, which serves a growing membership of nearly 150,000. Vantage West has 16 branches in Pima, Pinal, Maricopa and Cochise counties and serves its vast global membership via online channels, as well. Vantage West is a full-service financial institution, offering consumer and business loans, credit cards, and deposit products, as well as retirement accounts and other financial services. Vantage West is federally insured by NCUA.

                             

 Media Contacts:
Jill Casey
Vantage West Credit Union
520-917-6751
Cynthia Miller
Vantage West Credit Union
520-917-6715

 

MWCUA’s Credit Union Rock Stars

Credit Union Magazine named it’s 2017 Credit Union Rock Stars. Now in its fifth year this special edition of Credit Union Magazine celebrates those who make our movement extraordinary. Three from right here at home are among those that our honored.  Helen Gibson, vice president of marketing and education at Denver Community Credit Union, Margaret Hunnicutt, CEO of Landings Credit Union and Melanie Hutchison, director of risk management at Trona Valley Community Federal Credit Union. Read their stories here:

 

 

 

Denver Community CU partners with Volunteers of America in day of service

Denver, Colo. – All Denver Community Credit Union staff volunteered across six Volunteers of America Colorado sites on #DenverCommunityGives Day, Monday October 9th.   Volunteer projects supported underserved community members including at-risk children, women, seniors, and food insecure and homeless community members across Volunteers of America Colorado locations in Denver.  Eighty-six Denver Community employees volunteered a combined 430 hours.  Volunteers of America Colorado estimates a cost of $10,380 to pay their staff to do the tasks provided by Denver Community volunteers.

On #DenverCommunityGives Day, credit union staff painted and refurnished emergency shelter rooms for families, wrote letters to veterans and Meals on Wheels recipients, made fleece blankets and hygiene kits, sorted and boxed food donations, played BINGO with seniors, hosted a spa day for women rebuilding their lives to stay out of the cycle of homelessness, read to and made crafts with at-risk children, served meals to food insecure community members, and cleaned affordable housing and preschool facilities.  With the financial support of the Mountain West Credit Union Foundation, Denver Community Credit Union purchased furnishings for eight Volunteers of America Colorado emergency shelter rooms for families in crisis.

#DenverCommunityGives Day aligns with Denver Community Credit Union’s mission to “Educate. Deliver. Achieve.” and its vision of “Advancing financial opportunity” by making a difference in the lives of our community members.  This day of volunteering and the #DenverCommunityGives Program encourage Denver Community staff to remain involved in the communities we serve year-round.

For more information about #DenverCommunityGives Day, visit https://denvercommunity.coop/Gives

About Denver Community CU

Since 1934, Denver Community Credit Union has been advancing financial opportunity for its members and community. Anyone who lives or works in Adams, Arapahoe, Jefferson, or Denver Counties is welcome to become a member. We serve our communities with quality loans with low rates, and savings and checking products that help members effectively manage their money. Our staff provides top level service by focusing on finding solutions that help members reach further to achieve their financial goals. The credit union also positively impacts members and communities with the award-winning Clear Money Program; a financial education program. Learn more at https://www.denvercommunity.coop/

About Volunteers of America

Volunteers of America is a national, nonprofit, faith-based organization established in 1896 dedicated to helping those in need live healthy, safe and productive lives.  Serving more than 146,000 Coloradoans each year, Volunteers of America has supported and empowered America’s most vulnerable groups, including the frail elderly, people with disabilities, at-risk youth, homeless individuals and women and their children escaping domestic violence.  For more information about Volunteers of America, visit www.voacolorado.org.

Canyon State Credit Union and Federal Home Loan Bank of San Francisco Support Hustle Phoenix

Phoenix, AZ – Thanks to an application submitted by Canyon State Credit Union to the Federal Home Loan Bank (FHLB) of San Francisco, Hustle Phoenix was awarded a $40,000 grant to provide prospective entrepreneurs classroom training followed by several months of business advising from a network of volunteer professional advisors.

The funds are made available under FHL Bank’s AHEAD (Access to Housing and Economic Assistance for Development) Program, which awards grants through member banks to community groups. The grants support a variety of targeted economic development projects, including those that create or preserve jobs and benefit low- and moderate-income communities.

The focus of the AHEAD program is to support innovative economic development and job training or job creation initiatives that benefit low-and moderate-income communities and have the potential to help narrow the wealth gap.    The program is also a way to strengthen relationships between Bank members and nonprofits with special expertise in economic and community development.

“Through our membership with the Federal Home Loan Bank of San Francisco and our partnership with these programs, we are able to sponsor requests from community agencies that allow them and us to provide guidance and self-sufficiency training for those in need.” said Jane Dobbs, President/CEO Canyon State Credit Union. “It is our commitment, in partnership with these outstanding organizations, to assist the communities we serve.”

Hustle Phoenix helps entrepreneurs create comprehensive business plans and seek microloans to start or expand the business from the sponsor and its business partners. Oye Waddell, Executive Director of Hustle PHX, stated “We are thrilled to receive this FFHLB grant through our community sponsor, Canyon State Credit Union.  This grant will help the sponsor and recruit additional professional business advisors and to develop additional funding resources to create sustainable businesses that benefit the broader community.”

About Canyon State Credit Union

Canyon State Credit Union is headquartered in Phoenix and has been serving the people of Arizona for more than 65 years with branch locations in Deer Valley, Goodyear, and the Osborn area of Phoenix, AZ, as well as Payson, AZ.   Canyon State is open for membership from anyone who lives, works, or worships in a number of zip codes within Arizona, as well as anyone who works for the credit union’s designated Select Employee Groups (SEGs).  More information can be found at www.CanyonStateCU.org.

About Federal Home Loan Bank of San Francisco

The Federal Home Loan Bank of San Francisco delivers low-cost funding and other services that help member financial institutions make home mortgages to people of all income levels and provide credit that supports neighborhoods and communities. The Bank also funds community programs that help members create affordable housing and promote community economic development. The Bank’s members are headquartered in Arizona, California, and Nevada and include commercial banks, credit unions, industrial loan companies, savings institutions, insurance companies, and community development financial institutions.

Contact:          Lenore Froehlich
3440 W. Deer Valley Rd
Phoenix, AZ 85027
623.580.6053

 

 

 

 

 

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