* GREELEY, Colo. (2/19/08)--The first-degree murder trial begins today against Shawna Nelson, 37, in the shooting death of an employee of the Greeley branch of Colorado State Employee's CU, Heather Garraus. Garraus, 37, was killed in the parking lot as she left work on Jan. 23, 2007. Garraus' husband, a city policeman, had recently broken off an affair with Nelson, according to police. Nelson's husband, Ken, a sheriff's deputy, was charged on July 26 with tampering with evidence by allegedly removing an object from his wife's vehicle the night of the murder. On Nov. 20, Michelle Dawn Moore, 27, a former sheriff's deputy, was charged with conspiracy to commit first-degree murder and criminal attempt to commit first degree murder. More than 300 witnesses, including Greeley Mayor Ed Clark, are expected to testify in the 15-day trial. Five employees of the credit union are on the witness list (Greeley Tribune
Feb. 18) … * HARAHAN, La. (2/19/08)--ASI FCU will open an "all Latino" branch early this summer, with every employee speaking Spanish and English and all documents printed in both languages. The area's growing Hispanic population includes thousands of workers who entered the U.S. without the required documentation. Afraid to do anything that might get them deported, the workers carry their money with them and are targeted by robbers. ASI's branch will feature "safe accounts"--savings accounts from which members can make withdrawals using an ATM card. A second ATM card offers a way for foreign workers to send funds to family back in their countries of origination. The safe accounts don't earn interest because they don't require a Social Security or federal tax ID number to open them (Times-Picayune
Feb. 18) … * NORTHVILLE TOWNSHIP, Mich. (2/19/08)--Scott McFarland has been
named president/CEO at Berrien Teachers CU, based in Saint Joseph, Mich., according to the Michigan Credit Union League (Michigan Monitor
Feb. 18). He succeeds Robert H. Mackay, who retired on Jan. 31 after 25 years of service. McFarland has more than 18 years' experience with credit unions. He formerly served as vice president of member sales and service, vice president of operations and vice president of lending at United FCU; and is a former CEO of Saginaw County Employees CU. He began his credit union career as a teller at Michigan FCU (now Tri-Pointe Community CU) while attending college and became branch manager there after receiving his degree … * HOUSTON (2/19/08)--First Community CU is offering up to $5,000 in $500 “mini-grants” in the first year of a program aimed at helping community civic groups, nonprofit groups and schools come up with creative ways to beautify their neighborhoods. The grants are geared to assist with community projects, not to fund them entirely (Houston Chronicle
Feb. 14). The credit union is trying to find a method “to give back to the community while having a green impact,” Nancy Trennel, First Community vice president of marketing and development, told the paper. The grant program also fits the credit union’s philosophy of being a good community partner, she added. Applications for the grant program are due March 3, with grants announced March 7 and awarded April 5 on Keep Houston Beautiful Day ...