CUs earn historic victory as House passes S. 2155 reg. relief bill (Source: CUNA)

“CUNA, state credit union leagues, credit unions and credit union members all deserve a major round of applause for getting this historic bill through Congress and onto the president’s desk,” said CUNA President/CEO Jim Nussle. “From the moment a group of bipartisan Senators unveiled this bill, credit unions told them loud and clear that this is an essential piece of regulatory relief legislation that will improve access to mortgage lending, real estate loans and other products and services, while putting focus on senior abuse and cyberthreats.


CUNA was heavily engaged with legislators throughout the process, meeting with Senators early this year as negotiations began.

More than 5,000 credit union leaders discussed the importance of the bill when meeting with their legislators during the CUNA Governmental Affairs Conference Hike the Hill meetings. Also during CUNA GAC, Nussle and the leaders of several credit unions met with Trump at the White House to discuss the bill.

As the bill went through the Senate, CUNA met with House members from both sides to talk about the importance of the bill, including meetings with conservative-leaning Democratic House members and writing to House leadership to push for consideration.

CUNA also engaged in an aggressive grassroots campaign that led to 45 million social media impressions, tens of thousands of messages sent to legislators and radio and digital ads in 39 states.

Credit unions used CUNA’s Member Activation Program to activate tens of thousands of members to support S. 2155. In addition, leagues representing at least 16 states joined with their state banking organizations to call on their state’s members of Congress to support the bill.

 Once signed into law, S. 2155 will:
  • Establish a safe harbor from certain requirements for a loan to be considered a Qualified Mortgage;
  • Rescind the additional data points required under the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act for insured credit unions that originate fewer than 500 closed-end and/or 500 open-end lines of credit;
  • Reclassify one-to-four unit, non-owner occupied residential loans as real estate loans, so the loan would not count against the member business lending cap;
  • Clarify that the same consumer protections in place with respect to mortgage lending are nonexistent for Property Assessed Clean Energy loans;
  • Remove the three-day wait period required for the combined TRID mortgage disclosure if a creditor extends to a consumer a second offer of credit with a lower annual percentage rate;
  • Require NCUA to make publicly available a draft of their proposed budget, hold a hearing with public notice during which this draft would be discussed and solicit and consider public comment about the draft budget;
  • Provide a safe harbor for properly trained financial employees who report alleged elder financial abuse; and
  • Require the U.S. Department of Treasury to conduct a study on the risks that cyber threats may pose to financial institutions.

CUNA wrote to House leadership after the vote Tuesday, thanking them for the vote and outlining the next steps in CUNA’s advocacy agenda.

New Compliance Communities Announced

MADISON, Wis., and WASHINGTON (May 23, 2018) – Support and information on state and federal regulations is now available in one central hub.

After successful beta testing, three leagues have joined CUNA for the inaugural launch of CUNA & League Compliance Communities. These new communities, an extension of the CUNA Compliance Community, will provide an online hub for compliance professionals to connect, work together, share resources and become better informed about state-level credit union regulations.

Leagues joining CUNA in releasing these new CUNA & League Compliance Communities are:

  • Mountain West Credit Union Association
  • Northwest Credit Union Association
  • Credit Union Association of The Dakotas

“The community is a great resource for our credit unions.  They are able to network with their compliance peers and get answers to state regulatory and operational questions,” said Julie Kappenman, director of association compliance services, Mountain West Credit Union Association. “It is also a great way to update our credit unions with what is happening in our league and within states. The community is easy to use and CUNA staff has been great to work with and very responsive.”

The communities provide many resources for compliance professionals, including:

  • Blog – statewide compliance experts can provide you with knowledge regarding common credit union issues and state level interpretations of regulations
  • Discussion board – for state level networking & collaboration
  • Document library – for members and leagues to share policies, best practices and more
  • Events – the leagues can post their events that members can download directly to their outlook calendars
  • Multistate access – multistate credit unions can take advantage of the communities related to all the states they serve

Access to additional states will grow as more league compliance communities are built over the next few months.

To learn more about these CUNA & League Compliance Communities, email Jackie Ekdahl at



About CUNA   

Credit Union National Association (CUNA) is the only national association that advocates on behalf of all of America’s credit unions, which are owned by 110 million consumer members. CUNA, along with its network of affiliated state credit union leagues, delivers unwavering advocacy, continuous professional growth and operational confidence to protect the best interests of all credit unions. For more information about CUNA, visit

About the Mountain West Credit Union Association

The Mountain West Credit Union Association is the regional tri-state trade association representing 127 member credit unions, 3.3 million credit union members and $41 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 or on Facebook at To learn more about credit unions visit



Lauren Williams – CUNA Communications; (202) 626-7642;

Tracy Travis – CUNA Marketing; (608) 231-4219;


Economic Forum Now Open for Registration

Need some help looking into the economic future at a state and national level? Join your peers and get the scoop on what regional and national economists are predicting at the 2018 Economic Forum to be held August 23-24 in Sedona, Arizona.

Forum speakers just announced! Dr. Lee McPheters, Research Professor of Economics, ASU; Elry Amazra, Impact Director & Analyst, Filene Research Institute; Mike McGinnis, VP of Investment Sales, Catalyst Strategic Solutions; and Mike Schenk, VP of Research & Policy Analysis, CUNA are the speakers scheduled to be at this year’s event. Mark your calendars and plan to join us in Sedona, AZ this August.

Plus, 5.0 continuing education credits are available for CPAs who attend the program.

Venue: This year’s event will be held at the beautiful Hilton Sedona Resort at Bell Rock. A limited number of rooms at the conference rate of $199/night, plus taxes and $10 nightly resort fee are available at the resort. The reservation deadline is August 12, 2018, or when the hotel block fills, whichever occurs first.

For full event details and to register, go to:

Arizona Central Credit Union holds Financial Literacy Celebration

Representatives from Arizona Central Credit Union joined Arizona Senate Majority Leader Kimberly Yee at its Financial Literacy Celebration at Kachina Elementary School on May 14.

Arizona Central Credit Union has partnered with Kachina Elementary School & Andson, together teaching kids how to build a healthy savings foundation for their future.

Secondary Education Scholarship available in honor of Former CEO Sandy Neves

Aurora, CO – The Sandy Neves Scholarship was named in honor of former Chief Executive Officer Sandy Neves of Fitzsimons Credit Union (FCU). Sandy retired in 2017 after thirty-six years of service to the organization. This scholarship (ranging from $1,000 – $5,000) represents Sandy’s commitment to lifelong learning and her belief that education is essential toward self-fulfillment.

Sandy started as a teller at Fitzsimons in 1981 and was soon granted a scholarship from the Colorado Credit Union Association to attend three years of Credit Union National Association (CUNA) Management School where she earned high honors. By the time she completed her CUNA Management certification she was promoted to senior vice president of Fitzsimons Credit Union. In 1989, she took over the role of chief executive officer.

Because she had never completed her bachelor of science degree due to earlier travels as a military spouse and the time it took to earn various credit union credentials, Sandy enrolled in night school to earn her BS in Business Administration.

Ms. Neves is passionate about education, asserting that “The backbone of any accomplishment is education, no matter how one defines success”. She did not measure her success by becoming a CEO, but rather by the opportunities she was given by supporters, mentors and educators, and by the fact she was fortunate to work in a career she loved. She wants to support any person with the desire to work hard and learn.

Applications are available online at, by email (, or at either of our branch locations (see our website for locations).

Must be a U.S. citizen, at least 16 years of age; must be a member of Fitzsimons Credit Union; must be pursuing an associate’s or bachelor’s degree at a two or four-year accredited institution in the U.S.; must submit a complete application with required documents post-marked, emailed, or faxed by June 15, 2018.

Selection Criteria
Selection of the recipient is at the discretion of the Scholarship Committee of Fitzsimons Credit Union.

The winner will be notified in writing within 45 days of the application deadline and funds will be transmitted directly to the institution for credit to the student’s tuition, room, board, and fee account.

About Fitzsimons Credit Union: Fitzsimons Credit Union is a not-for-profit full-service financial institution serving the Colorado communities of Aurora, Watkins, Bennett, Strasburg, and eastern Centennial, as well as active and retired military and select employers. Fitzsimons Credit Union was first chartered in 1955 and is federally insured by the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA). Fitzsimons reaches out to the un-served and under-served in our field of membership, and continually, in all areas of operation, demonstrates the value of membership in this credit union. Every effort is put forth to enable our members to become financially self-sufficient and successful. High importance is placed on consumer education and the teaching of financial thrift.

Media Contact:

Mountain West Credit Union Association Announces New Board, Annual Award Winners

Board named along with Professional, Director of the Year and HOPE Award Winners

DENVER, Co. (May 14, 2018) – The Mountain West Credit Union Association’s Board of Directors announced it elected a new slate of officers after the Association’s Annual Business Meeting held April 27, 2018.

Serving as Chairman of the Board is Jim Yates, President and CEO of First Education Federal Credit Union in Cheyenne, WY. Jay Curtis, President and CEO of First Credit Union in Chandler, AZ, will serve as Vice-Chairman. Colleen Curtis, President and CEO of Southwest Healthcare Credit Union in Phoenix, AZ will serve as Treasurer. Greg Mills, President and CEO of Aventa Credit Union in Colorado Springs, CO will serve as Secretary.

“I am looking forward to working with these amazing individuals who are tremendously dedicated to supporting the credit union movement,” said Scott Earl, President and CEO of the Mountain West Credit Union Association. “Their passion for our members is evident in their ongoing commitment to serve in this capacity in addition to their responsibilities at their respective credit unions. For that, we thank them and are grateful.”

Additionally, there were four board seats up for re-election. All four incumbents chose to run for an additional term and were elected by acclamation.  They are:

  • Robert Ramirez, Vantage West Credit Union was re-elected for a 3-year term in the at-large category.
  • Greg Mills, Aventa Credit Union was re-elected for a 3-year term in the Class 2 category.
  • John Uchida, Space Age Credit Union was re-elected for a 3-year term in the at-large category.
  • Jim Yates, First Education Federal Credit Union was re-elected for a 3-year term in the Class 3 category.

Annual Awards Presented

The Mountain West Credit Union Association also presented its annual credit union Professional and Director of the Year, as well as the Hope Award, at a special dinner also held April 27 at The Broadmoor Resort in Colorado Springs, CO.

Each year, the Association solicits nominations to determine the Professional and Director of the Year. The Association also gave out the HOPE Award. HOPE stands for “Helping People Every Day.” HOPE nominees were recognized throughout the year either at their credit union, a Chapter event or within their state.

Jim Yates – Professional of the Year

Professional of the Year

Jim Yates, President and CEO of First Education Federal Credit Union in Cheyenne, WY and newly named chairman of the Mountain West Credit Union Association Board of Directors, was awarded the Credit Union Professional of the Year. “Jim has been an active member of his community, as well as the Association, for many years,” said Earl. “His dedication to the credit union movement, and the technologies that will keep us relevant, is a tremendous benefit to both the Association, and our member credit unions.”

He began his career in 1984 as a teller and from there, moved into accounting and IT. In 1993, he joined First Education Federal Credit Union, where he is now the President and CEO. He is an active Credit Union Development Educator (CUDE), and was instrumental in the formation of what is now the Mountain West Credit Union Foundation. He is active in the Cheyenne community where he currently serves as President of the Cheyenne Schools Foundation. In addition, he has served on numerous national Credit Union National Association (CUNA) committees. He has a degree in Economics from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and studied business management at Bellarmine University in Louisville, Kentucky.

Yates is an innovator and supports ideas that are geared to advance technology. He was at the forefront of CULedger initiative, a growing initiative for a sovereign digital identity platform. His tireless dedication to serving and is reflected in the numerous committees and other activities that he has participated in over the years.


Walker Fleming – Director of the Year

Director of the Year

Walker Fleming, chairman of the board, Bellco Credit Union (Denver, CO) was named the Director of the Year. He has been active in the credit union movement since 2010 when he joined the credit union’s supervisory committee, and has been Chairman of the Board since 2013. He is a great supporter of the movement and regularly participates in Hike the Hill visits in Washington, D.C. In 2015 he hosted the opening reception for the World Council of Credit Unions and CUNA in Denver as well as attending the conference. In addition to his credit union service, he is a member of the Boy Scouts Trustee Board and the Denver Police Foundation Board.


Jane Vela – Hope Award Winner

HOPE Award

Jane Vela, from Landings Credit Union in Tempe, AZ was named the recipient of the HOPE Award. Vela embodies the “People Helping People” quality every day. In the decade she has worked for the credit union, she has developed deep relationships with members. Her compassion led her to assist one particular member obtain disability benefits after a life altering accident. She also assisted him with a budget and helped him purchase his first home. She has assisted him through additional life changes and helped him navigate through the HARP Program, apply for social services, and other services. She now engages with other staff in collecting donations to help the member and his grandson enjoy time together such as movies or special events.


About the Mountain West Credit Union Association

The Mountain West Credit Union Association is the regional tri-state trade association representing 127 member credit unions, 3.3 million credit union members and $41 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 or on Facebook at To learn more about credit unions visit


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Visit our Webinars Special page for full details.

Take Action on S. 2155

A key legislative priority for credit unions is expected to begin to move in the U.S. House this month. S.2155: The Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act, passed the Senate with bipartisan support earlier this year. The bill contains several financial regulatory reform provisions important to credit unions. Specifically, the following links highlight the benefits of S. 2155 for each state:  Arizona, Colorado, Wyoming. Since we anticipate the House to move on the bill soon, we want to make sure our voices are heard.  In doing so, we are asking that credit unions take a few minutes to participate in our Action Alert. The alert will match you up with your Congressional district, and guide you in writing an email to your U.S. Representative in support of the bill.


Michael Trueba – Vantage West VP & Manager of Business Banking

TUCSON, Arizona. (May 3, 2018) – Vantage West Credit Union has named Michael (Mike) Trueba as its new Vice President & Manager of Business Banking.  In his new role, he will lead the business banking team and efforts for southern Arizona’s largest credit union.

Trueba brings to Vantage West his expertise and knowledge in business and commercial banking, along with a genuine appreciation and understanding of local small business needs.

“I was born and raised in Arizona and am a graduate of the University of Arizona. I have been involved in Arizona business banking since 1976, having spent the last 22 years in Tucson in the community bank environment.  Given our experienced team of business bankers and lenders, combined with the strength of Vantage West and local decision makers, we will be able to deliver the products and services the local business community deserves,” said Trueba.

In his new leadership position, Trueba identifies and develops long-term strategies to grow Vantage West’s business banking relationships, in order to benefit both credit union members and the community. He also manages the financial needs of local small business owners by ensuring the credit union offers a competitive mix of products and services within its commercial portfolio.

Prior to joining Vantage West, Trueba held key executive positions in various commercial departments of local financial institutions. He was Executive Vice President & Assistant Chief Credit Officer at Bank of Tucson, Vice President of Credit Manager at Bank One Arizona, and Vice President of various departments at First Interstate Bank of Arizona, among others.

He also served in the board and committees of various organizations including the Southern Arizona CCIM (Certified Commercial Investment Member) Chapter, the Pima County Real Estate Research Council, and the Amphitheater Public Schools.

Trueba earned his bachelor’s degree from the University of Arizona, and later graduated from the University of Washington, Pacific Coast Banking School.  He also obtained his CCIM designation after completing advanced coursework in financial and market analysis, and demonstrating extensive experience in the commercial real estate industry. CCIM designees are recognized as leading experts in commercial investment real estate.

About Vantage West Credit Union

Vantage West, southern Arizona’s largest credit union, is on a mission to ignite collaborative relationships with their members and the communities they serve, so all can thrive together. Vantage West offers consumer and business banking services, and is federally insured by NCUA.

Media Contacts:
Jill Casey
Cynthia Miller
Vantage West Credit Union



MWCUA issues Call to Action on S. 2155

Congressional leadership is signaling they plan to take up S. 2155, the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief and Consumer Protection Act, this month.

MAKE YOUR VOICE HEARD: Contact your Representative now to vote YES on S. 2155

By contacting your representative today, your action can help get this bill through the House and on the President’s desk. S. 2155 passed the Senate in March with strong, bipartisan support which we have not seen in years.
The benefits of passing this bipartisan, common-sense legislation is a no-brainer for credit unions: it will protect seniors from elder financial abuse, make mortgage processing easier and quicker, increase affordable rental housing in our communities, and help credit unions provide better service to their members.
Please forward this email to your staff and board members so they’re engaged on this crucial vote. It’s time for Congress to fight for the 110 million Americans who depend on credit unions.

Tell your Representative