Executive Leadership Graduates Mounting up!

Maggie Camacho, White Crown Federal Credit Union

Maggie joins two members of her 2013 cohort as she completes all the requirements for the ELP.  Maggie joins Jeremy Gibson, Trona Valley FCU and Angel Phillips, Reliant FCU as she puts her new skills to work at the executive level.  Maggie has been President of the Denver Area Chapter, was selected as a 2017 20 under 40 young professional and worked in a wide range of operational areas.  Maggie has recently joined the team at White Crown FCU as Vice President of Strategic Initiative.  Congratulations to Maggie for all her hard work!

Mountain West Credit Union Foundation is connecting Credit Union Mentors with Emerging Leaders

The Center for Credit Union Leadership’s new Mentor Program connects emerging credit union leaders with mentors to help new leaders assess and develop their leadership philosophy through telephone and video-based meetings with their mentors and a structured Leadership Development Plan. The process, provided by the Center, examines the candidate’s values, assumptions, and beliefs to create developmental goals for the candidate. Eight mentors have been intensely trained and are now beginning their first connection with their mentees. “This program is a one of a kind, It’s the only one I know of that identifies credit union leaders early in their career and connects them with seasoned mentors. The program holds a good deal of promise and could be a great tool for retaining talent in our movement” says Dr. Dan Santangelo, the Center’s Executive Director. Our list of mentors includes: Paul Kirkbride of Ent, Colleen Knoll of Public Service Credit Union, Ray Lancaster of Pyramid Credit Union, Brian Lee of Landings Credit Union, Choua Ly of Partner Colorado Credit Union, Annett Matthies, President of Aspen Edge Consulting, John Rivera of Bellco, and Scott Sager of Trona Valley Community Federal Credit Union.

Meet the New Chief Executive Institute Scholars

The Mountain West Credit Union Foundation is please to present the recipients of the 2018 Chief Executive Scholarships. Every other year, the Foundation Awards outstanding CEOs and C suite officers a $9,000 scholarship to attend the highly prestigious Chief Executive Institute.  This eminently qualified group of credit union executives, will participate in an eight-month 5 session learning experience designed to help C suite executives position their credit unions for growth, innovation and market competitiveness using the Baldrige leadership model.

Russ Dalke, CEO Northern Colorado Credit Union

Russ’ credit union career started as a financial analyst then he quickly moved up as a controller, Vice President of Finance, Chief Financial Officer and now CEO.  While in the military Russ received ongoing leadership training.  His community services include board member service on the Greeley Dream Team providing volunteer assistance to at-risk students.  He has served on many other youth and coaching initiatives, and today serves as a business coach and guide to his own team at Northern Colorado Credit Union.

Tyler Disburg, CEO River-Rail Federal Credit Union

Tyler’s credit union career includes marketing, promotions, and service as Chief Administrative Officer at Montana First Credit Union.  He served as the Chairperson of the Missoula Chamber of Commerce Professional Development Committee. Tyler earned his MBA in Organizational Strategy and is a Development Educator.  His community work includes A Special Wish Foundation, Community Action Partnerships of Natrona County, and CUNA’s Marketing and Business Development Council Executive Committee.

Bob Fryberger, CEO Fitzsimons Credit Union  

Bob started his career right out of college with Fitzsimons CU.  He started as an accounting supervisor.  Bob was promoted to Chief Financial Officer then on to Executive Vice President, and now is CEO.  He received leadership training from Mountain States Employers Council Leadership Academy and completed Financial Management School.  Bob completed his Masters of Science in Finance, and his community work includes: City of Aurora Business Advisory Board, Aurora Chamber of Commerce Leadership Aurora, and Mountain West Credit Union Association’s Budget Committee.

Kathi Glanz, CEO Yuma County Federal Credit Union

Kathi started her career as a teller at age 21 with Yuma County FCU.  She worked her way up through the ranks serving in many positions in the credit union and was selected the CEO by the board after the retirement of her predecessor.  Kathi completed her Bachelor’s degree in 2003.  Her community work includes: an officer of the High Plains Chapter of Credit Unions, church committees, and the 5k-10K Yuma race committee.

  Kristin Hadeen, CEO Haxtun Community Federal Credit Union

Before joining the credit union as CEO in 2016, Kristin worked as a real estate agent and managed several of her own properties.  Since coming to Haxtun Community FCU, she has developed and formulated new procedures, installed an online banking system, and engineered a plan for credit union growth.  Kristin’s community work includes board chair of the Haxtun Chamber, Church Secretary, Sunday School Director, and Haxtun School Board Accountability Committee.  She is a Western CUNA Management School Graduate and a member of the National Realtors’ Association.

Carrie Langgard, CFO Sooper Credit Union  

Carrie has worked for credit unions for the past 20 years.  During her tenure she has overseen a wide variety of departments including accounting and finance, information and technology, strategic operations, human resources, and enterprise risk management.  Carrie’s community work includes service on the boards of both the Denver and Rocky Mountain Chapters of Credit Unions, and she earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration.  Carrie is a graduate of the Mountain West Credit Union Association’s Leadership Institute and is trained in Asset-Liability Management.

Randy Mims, CEO Credit Union of the Rockies

Randy began his work in credit unions some 35 years ago.  He worked as a credit union VP and EVP by the age of 28.  Randy was a CEO at age 31 and served as the Chairman of the Florida League.  His focus over the past 5 years has been to grow and lead Credit Union of the Rockies. His community work with Denver Urban Scholars has inspired his leadership style.  Randy is a certified credit union executive and holds a Bachelor’s degree in Human Resource Management.

Mike Moyes, CEO Coloramo Credit Union

Mike’s work in credit unions spans both credit union and League services.  His work as a Vice President at the Michigan Credit Union League developed his skills in asset-liability management, regulatory compliance, training and compensation management. Before coming to Coloramo, Mike managed Salt Lake Credit Union as its CEO.  His community work includes Kiwanis, local chambers and CUES board of directors.  He is a CUNA CEO Boot Camp graduate, and holds both a Bachelor’s and Masters degree in Computer Information Systems.

Michael Nagl, CEO Centennial Lending  

Michael’s 13 years of credit union experience includes service at Centennial Lending, first in lending services and then as the CEO, and he has served at Blue Federal Credit Union as Chief Lending Officer.  Michael’s community work includes President of the Rocky Mountain Chapter of Credit Unions which is nationally recognized for its award winning financial literacy program.  He holds a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Business Administration, and is a graduate of Western CUNA Management School.

Brayman-Beach Scholarships NOW OPEN

This year as in the past, The Mountain West Credit Union Foundation will award one $5,000 scholarship to a student who is a member of a Colorado-based credit union seeking a business degree from a four-year accredited institution.

The scholarship is named after two Colorado Credit Union leaders, Susan J. Brayman and Carroll Beach.  Susan served as a Colorado Credit Union System senior executive and Carroll served as a Colorado Credit Union System CEO.  Together they served for more than 50 years.

There is no better way to convey the “people helping people” philosophy and the generous nature of our credit union community than by helping your young members achieve their dream of higher education. The deadline for applications is Friday, March 30, 2018 at 1:00pm

Follow this link for an application

Gary Plank Scholarship Opens Early

The World Council of Credit Unions will hold its annual conference in Suntec City Singapore in July, and the Gary Plank Scholarship will help young credit union professionals and Development Educators attend.  The deadline for the 2018 Scholarship is March 9, 2018.

This annual scholarship is named in honor of the retired Arizona League President Gary Plank, who once served as the Chair of the World Council of Credit Unions. This year the program will provide three $6,500 scholarships for young professionals and directors OR Development Educators (no age requirement) to attend the World Credit Union Conference offered by the World Council of Credit Unions in Suntec City, Singapore, July 15-18, 2018. To learn more about this once in a life time opportunity, and to apply CLICK HERE.



Executive Leadership Program Deadline Extended to December 15, 2107

If you missed out on the last round of the Foundation Executive Leadership Program, you won’t want to let this opportunity pass you again. The Mountain West Credit Union Foundation will select three new candidates for an incredible, fully-funded, five-year leadership development journey that includes instruction in organizational leadership through the Mountain West Credit Union Leadership Institute, credit union philosophy immersion with the Development Educators program, credit union operations training at Western CUNA Management School, 48 months of executive coaching, and a hands-on capstone mentorship program. This is the only comprehensive program built to develop leaders specifically for to become the next generation of CEOs. The application deadline extended to December 15, 2017 so act now to build your team and develop your next generation of credit union leader at. Executive Leadership Program.  Click here to download an application, NOW!

Get your mentor on

The Mentor Relationship is Valuable for Both the Mentor and the Mentored.

Being a mentor is, of course, largely about giving back. But, it’s also one of the best ways to sharpen your skills and learn new things.

“If you want to learn something, read about it. If you want to understand something, write about it. If you want to master something, teach it.”Yogi Bhajan

Acting as a mentor is also one of the most proactive things you can do to advance your own career goals. According to a Sun Microsystems study, mentors are 20% more likely to get a raise and SIX times more likely to get promoted.

Having a mentor helps you develop and advance your career in a way that you just can’t do on your own. Ask most any successful person and they will tell you that they would not have accomplished as much without the guidance and support of at least one mentor along the way.

But, finding a mentor can be challenging.

The Center for Credit Union Leadership can help.

If you are looking for a mentor that can help you build your leadership brand and get to the next level, click here to find out how the Center can help you find the right mentor.

If you are ready to share your skills and experience with emerging leaders who are eager to grow and make an impact, click here to apply to become one of the Center’s mentors.

Mountain West Credit Union Foundation Presents Annual Awards

DENVER, Co. (Oct. 2017) – The Mountain West Credit Union Foundation presented its annual credit union industry awards at the 10th Annual Star Gala held September 22 at the Ellie Caulkins Opera House in Denver, Colorado. Proceeds from the event support the charitable work of the Foundation.


Each year, the Star Gala is held to honor outstanding credit unions and credit union professionals dedicated to the credit union movement and making a difference in their communities. This year, awards were presented to:


  • Pima Federal Credit Union (AZ) – Community Impact Award, winner
  • Reliant Federal Credit Union (WY) – Community Impact Award, runner-up
  • Vantage West (AZ) – Credit Union Of the Year ($500M and over Asset Category)
  • Angel Phillips, Reliant Federal Credit Union (WY) – Emerging Leader Award
  • Mike Williams, Colorado Credit Union – Distinguished Leader Award


“These award winners truly embody the credit union philosophy,” said Dr. Dan Santangelo, Executive Director of the Mountain West Credit Union Foundation. “Credit unions exist to enhance the lives of their members. The individuals and credit unions receiving these awards truly make a difference in their communities, and in the lives of their members. It’s why we do what we do.”


Money raised from the event goes to fund Foundation programs that provide scholarships for numerous leadership, professional development and academic opportunities; financial services, development and public financial education grants; and other programs supporting credit unions in Arizona, Colorado and Wyoming, the states served by the Mountain West Credit Union Association.


The 2018 Star Gala will be held in Phoenix AZ, on Friday, October 26, at the Chateaux Luxe.


About the awards/ winners:

The Pima Federal Credit Union team accepts the Community Impact Award

Pima Federal Credit Union (AZ), Community Impact Award winner. One of the founding principles of the credit union movement is the premise of “people helping people.” The Community Impact award honors a credit union for its commitment and dedication to the community it serves. Pima Federal Credit Union sees their Community Outreach Program

as a natural extension of its vision, mission, and common purpose. This program supports Southern Arizona communities through employee volunteerism, educational support, financial literacy, community giving, fundraising, and sponsorships. In its 6th year, the Community Outreach Program provided more than 2,800 hours of community service, taught financial literacy to over 660 students, and donated nearly $180,000 to organizations that directly benefit Southern Arizona communities. Pima encourages employees to volunteer with organizations that they are passionate about by providing each employee with four paid hours a quarter. Of their 186 employees, 154 (83%) volunteered with 75 different organizations, including a monthly service commitment to the Community Food Bank of Southern Arizona and the Diaper Bank of Southern Arizona. Reliant Federal Credit Union (WY) received the runner-up award for its Good Corporate Citizen Campaign to incorporate three of the credit union’s activities – Random Acts of Kindness, Day of Caring, and the Employee Community Involvement policy. Through Random Acts of Kindness, Reliant has provided meals prepared for hospice patients, coloring books for children of modest means, picking up the tab on pizzas at a restaurant, or taking over a local coffee shop. Over the past year, the credit union contributed $18,000 to acts that touched over 5,600 community members.



L to R: Foundation Board Chair Todd Pearson, Vantage West CU President & CEO Robert D. Ramirez, MWCUA President & CEO Scott Earl

Vantage West Credit Union (AZ) – Credit Union of the Year Award (Over $500M Assets). This award recognizes a credit union for innovation and outstanding achievements in the various areas of day-to-day operations, financial prowess, and member service. Vantage West Credit Union has been serving the community for over 70 years. They have an expansive Hispanic initiative which gained the Juntos Avanzamos designation, and has become a leader in serving this market. Vantage West Credit Union joined with local law enforcement to fight skimming at gas pumps. Through their efforts, more than 80 skimming devices were removed with fraud claims declining from 54 a month to 3, preventing over half a million dollars in claims.


Todd Pearson, Angel Phillips, Scott Earl

Angel Phillips, Reliant Federal Credit Union (WY), Emerging Leader Award. The emerging leader award is presented to a credit union employee who demonstrates outstanding contributions to the credit union movement, community service and leadership qualities. Phillips has been a part of the movement for nearly a decade and is a graduate of the Mountain West Credit Union Leadership Institute, a Credit Union Development Educator, and a scholar of the Foundation’s Executive Leadership Program. She has established a financial literacy program for their credit union and local school district. Additionally, she created a service-oriented mentoring program for credit union staff and recently took on a new role as Manager of Member Service.

Todd Pearson, Mike Williams, Scott Earl

Mike Williams, Colorado Credit Union – Distinguished Leader Award. Williams has been dedicated to the credit union movement for 30 years. He is a credit union activist, spending more than 15 years attending the Government Affairs Conference and Hike the Hill initiatives while working to build relationships with state elected officials and communicating credit union issues. Williams has served by providing leadership on numerous Association, CUNA, and CUSO boards. This included being a part of the team that merged the Arizona, Colorado, and Wyoming leagues into the Mountain West Credit Union Association.

About the Mountain West Credit Union Foundation

The Mountain West Credit Union Foundation is the charitable organization focused on the long-term success of credit unions in their community.  We accomplish our work through leadership development, professional development scholarships, academic scholarships, affordable financial services grants, credit union development grants and public financial education grants.

More information about the Mountain West Credit Union Foundation can be found at www.mwcua.com/foundation.

Patti Hazlett, phazlett@mwcua.com


Mountain West Credit Union Foundation Seeks Your Support for Hurricane Harvey Victims

The Chairman of Mountain West Credit Union Foundation, Todd Pearson, has authorized a donation to CUAid.coop in the amount of $10,000 to assist the credit union victims who have experienced devastating loss caused by Hurricane Harvey.  We here at the Foundation know that the need is very high and hope that you might also consider giving, too. To donate now click here.

Gary Plank Scholars Selected

Meet the 2017 Gary Plank Scholars
Each year the Foundation awards four $5,000 scholarships. Three to credit union young professionals under age 35, and one to a deserving Development Educator to attend the World Council of Credit Union’s meeting.  Scholars are selected based on their overall contribution to their credit unions, their communities, and the credit union movement.  The scholarship was named after Mr. Gary Plank, a former Arizona League President and Chair of the World Council. This year the meeting will be held in Vienna Austria in late July.  Congratulations to the 2017 Gary Plank Scholars


Karen Nadal the Development Educator Scholarship recipient.   Karen, a branch manager at Pyramid Federal Credit Union, has been with the credit union for 15 years.  Karen is a project leader at her credit union and has coordinated a Reality Fair designed to help young students learn about managing personal finance, leading Children’s Miracle Network fundraisers, and spear-heading a “Be Safe Saturday” event designed to promote children’s safety and wellness.  Karen is also a champion of the cooperative business model, always striving to ensure her team knows how credit unions work and how they are different from just another financial institution.   In addition to her work as a credit union professional, Karen is a grandmother, a gardener and cook.

Alex Pinuelas, a credit union young professional, has been with Pyramid Federal Credit Union for more than 4 years.  Alex has progressed in rank and responsibility quickly at the credit union and now holds a key position in indirect lending.  He is a good relationship builder and works hard so that local car dealerships keep Pyramid credit union and their members top of mind.  Alex participates in community fundraisers and volunteers to teach personal finance at the local high school.


Tara Roether, a credit union young professional, has only been with Landings Credit Union for a short time, but she has made a big impression.  Since she started as a graphic designer and a digital marketer, she has increased the credit union’s social media followers by 75%, created new ways to reformat the credit union’s newsletter, and created video aids for sales and promotions.  Tara has coordinated the credit union’s International Credit Union Day activities and was a ‘crasher’ at the 2017 Government Affairs Conference in Washington D.C.   Tara is a local school volunteer and a Credit Union Young Professionals participant.


Tyler Valentine, a credit union young professional, is President/CEO of Laramie Plains Federal Credit Union and is responsible for day-to-day operations, strategic direction, board relations, and senior leadership development.  Tyler serves on several boards including the past chair of the Laramie Chamber Business Alliance, Treasurer of the Mountain West Credit Union Foundation, and committee chair of the Mountain West Credit Union Association’s Young Professionals Committee.  Tyler is also a champion of the cooperative business model and his commitment to the model, is demonstrated by ensuring that young credit union professionals are educated and immersed in the People helping People philosophy. Additionally, he has earned his Development Educator designation from the National Credit Union Foundation.