BIG plays big role in ‘game changing’ CULedger program

DENVER, CO (September 8, 2016) — Many of us have already heard about the game-changing CULedger program – a collective effort to build a private, distributed ledger network (similar to Blockchain), dedicated to the unique needs of credit unions. Credit union technology think tank Best Innovation Group (BIG) is leading this consortium on the tech side, which consists of CUNA, Mountain West Credit Union Association, and a growing list of credit union industry partners. BIG will research, develop, and pilot potentially useful applications for members such as trusted and portable identity in which credit unions can drive and become a leader.

CULedger consortium is also working with Evernym, which developed a public permissioned ledger network designed exclusively for self-sovereign identity called Sovrin. CUNA’s CULedger steering committee has elected to fast track its first project by utilizing Sovrin and building an application on the platform.

“This project could lead to a whole new future within the industry when it comes to payment processes, identity and fraud prevention, lending practices, and more,” states BIG Founder/CEO John Best. “As technology innovators at BIG, we are incredibly proud to be a part of this new initiative that will definitely change the way we bank very soon. It’s great to have forward thinking credit unions at the forefront of this game-changing technology.”

Best adds that credit unions, as drivers of this platform, will play a key role in adoption. “The credit union industry is a great place to start with a sovereign identity platform. We have often as an industry paid lip service to collaboration, so this is a chance to demonstrate that our industry can collaborate and be regarded as a formidable force in the financial marketplace.”

Best Innovation Group was recently selected by CULedger Steering Committee as one of the primary resources for the project. BIG will also provide executive leadership, project management, and technical expertise.

“We are working on research and the feasibility of a network for credit unions,” Best explains. “Our goals are to research this technology and look for wins for the credit union membership.”

Rudy Pereira, President/CEO of Royal Credit Union and CUNA CEO Council Vice Chairman, will chair the CULedger Steering Committee. Rich Meade, COO of CUNA is also providing expert leadership for the program. 

If credit unions and industry-related organizations would like to participate, please visit For information on research and development expense opportunities, please contact MWCUA’s Rick Cranston at or 720.479.3342.

About CULedger

CULedger is a research-to-action initiative that is investigating the viability of a private, permissioned distributed ledger (DLT) that can be used by credit unions. It is an effort to do for the credit union industry what R3 is doing for the banks: assemble a consortium of credit unions and CUSOs to build a ledger network dedicated the needs of credit unions. For more information, visit:

About CUNA

Credit Union National Association (CUNA) is the largest national trade association in the United States serving America’s credit unions. The not-for-profit trade group is governed by volunteer directors who are elected by their credit union peers from across the nation. With its network of affiliated state credit union associations, CUNA serves America’s nearly 7,000 credit unions – which are owned by more than 105 million consumer members. For more information, visit

About Mountain West Credit Union Association (MWCUA)

The Mountain West Credit Union Association is the regional trade association representing 125 member credit unions, 3.1 million credit union members and $34 billion in assets throughout Arizona, Colorado and Wyoming. Mountain West serves and supports member credit unions through advocacy, communications, community outreach, education & training, operational assistance, public affairs, and regulatory compliance assistance. For more information, visit:

About Evernym

Evernym is about taking back control of our digital lives. It enables privacy, but it’s more than privacy. It provides control, but it’s far more than control. It’s about simplicity. It’s about fearlessness to interact, to engage with anyone or anything else. It’s about receiving the signal without all the noise. Evernym represents a new concept in communication — controlling who we allow to communicate with us and how — through a single interaction point for our lives, both online and off, much like a personal firewall. For more information, visit

About BIG

BIG, founded by former Wescom Credit Union/Wescom Resources Group CTO John Best, is an innovation think tank designed to point its clients in the right direction and achieve quicker adoption of cutting edge technologies. BIG will also leverage the size and scale of its clients to create relationships with entities that would not otherwise want to engage in the credit union market. The firm will provide research and development for its clients in the form of prototypes and written research. BIG will also provide content to credit unions on a subscription basis, providing reviews and research of emerging technology. In addition, BIG will generate avenues to attract top technology talent to credit unions. For more information, visit:


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