HARRISBURG, Pa. (2/1/10)--The CEO of a credit union in Pennsylvania told how credit unions help the economy during a panel discussion with the state's Appropriations Committee at an Economic Outlook and Jobs Summit Thursday, according to the Pennsylvania Credit Union Association (PCUA). Kent Hartzler, CEO of Mennonite Financial FCU, Lancaster, Pa., represented credit unions in the meeting (Life is a Highway Jan. 29). "A large part of the reason why credit unions continue to service and lend to their members is because of our philosophy and structure," he said in his opening statement. He gave a personal story of how Mennonite Financial FCU helped members in the Punxsutawney area. Eight Amish community leaders partnered with the credit union to open two new sawmills. As a result, 14 families are now back to work and have incomes, he reported, adding, "This is just one example of how credit unions are helping the economy within the state." After the summit, PCUA President/CEO Jim McCormack said, "We're proud that credit unions are being recognized by our elected officials as financial institutions who are helping the economy and improving the lives of Pennsylvanians." Other panelists included representatives from Greater Philadelphia Urban Affairs Coalition, Pennsylvania Association of Community Bankers, Pennsylvania Bankers Association, and Enterprise Bank.