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CU System briefs (03/06/2009)
* SAN FRANCISCO (3/9/09)--The California Senate Rules Committee voted 5-0 Wednesday to support the confirmation of Department of Financial Institutions Commissioner William S. Haraf to that position. Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger appointed Haraf as commissioner, effective March 8, 2008. Haraf was sworn in on April 8, 2008, by Business, Transportation and Housing Agency Secretary Dale E. Bonner. Haraf said the full Senate will take up his confirmation within two weeks and the process is "generally pro forma." He noted the "vast majority of financial institutions licensed by DFI are healthy and operating with good capital cushions." … * VANCOUVER, Wash. (3/9/09)--Parker Cann, president/CEO of Vancouver-based Columbia CU, will leave the credit union April 30 to become senior vice president and corporate counsel at Boeing Employees' CU (BECU), the two credit unions announced. Cann will start his new position May 4. He will oversee the division that manages BECU's legal affairs and influences its legislative and regulatory environment. Cann joined the credit union four years ago after its attempted conversion to a bank charter failed. He has nearly 30 years' financial industry experience. Prior to joining Columbia, he served three years as executive vice president and chief operating officer at Arrow Head CU and seven years as the head credit union regulator in Washington state. Columbia's board will conduct a nationwide search for a replacement. It expects the search process to take at least three months … * CHESTERFIELD, Mo. (3/9/09)--An alert teller at Chesterfield-based First Community CU helped stop a check fraud scheme that originated in Springfield, according to the Missouri Credit Union Association (The Missouri difference March 4). The credit union's branch coordinator, Berni Roth, sent an alert warning employees of local fraudulent check activity on Feb. 26. The alert, which included surveillance photos of the suspect, arrived a few minutes before the suspect appeared at the credit union's drive-through in St. Charles and allegedly tried to pass a stolen check. The drive-through teller, Jennifer Parker, recognized her from the photos. As employees questioned the transaction, the suspect left. Denecia Simpson, Springfield, was arrested on a forgery charge. "With such a large branch network, it's essential to use technology to communicate," said Glenn D. Barks, president/CEO of the $1.351 billion asset credit union … * FORT WORTH, Texas (3/9/09)--Friday the 13th was a lucky day for American Eagle pilot Cap. William Karr Jr. of Lake Dallas, Texas. On Feb. 13, American Airlines FCU President/CEO Angie Owens called Karr to say he was $50,000 richer and the grand prize winner of $50K Your Way Sweepstakes. The sweepstakes was sponsored by Digital Insight, a third-party provider of the credit union's online banking services. Karr was randomly chosen in the nationwide contest to help raise awareness of the benefits of paying bills online. In the sweepstakes, new Bill Pay users earned $10 by paying 10 bills online. Ten daily instant prizes of $100 were also available, as well as a chance for the grand prize … * HARRISBURG, Pa. (3/9/09)--Pennsylvania Credit Union Association President/CEO Jim McCormack and State Treasurer Rob McCord gave an overview of PCUA's Credit Union Better Choice payday loan alternative program during a news segment of "Pennsylvania Newsmakers," taped Wednesday in Harrisburg. McCord, who took office in January and is supportive of the program, said he believes all Pennsylvanians should have access to fair and appropriate finance tools. McCormack noted 80 credit unions with more than 200 branches in the state have agreed to offer the program. It was launched in October 2006 through a partnership with the Department of Treasury and a $20 million investment in the credit union system. The program, part of PCUA's monthly financial education sponsorship, can be seen across Pennsylvania from March 15 through 17 (Life is a Highway March 5) … * PITTSFIELD, Mass. (3/9/09)--Greylock announced that its annual employee United Way campaigns collected a record $70,000. President Angelo C. Stracuzzi thanked campaign tri-chairs Dan Dillon and Sherry Van Bramer from Greylock FCU and Kathy Chenail from Greylock Insurance Agency for their efforts. Greylock also donated the services of two employees--Dan Dillon, relationship development officer, and Joanne Billow, marketing services coordinator--and provided an additional $29,691, including a partnership with Johnson Ford to donate a car in a raffle for United Way … * HARAHAN, La. (3/9/09)--Helen Godfrey-Smith, CEO of Shreveport (La.) FCU, is among seven recipients of the Louisiana Legislative Women's Caucus Foundation's 2009 Women of Excellent Awards, says the Louisiana Credit Union League (eNews March 4). The award recognizes extraordinary women of outstanding professional excellence across the state for their achievements and contributions. Each of the seven categories had one recipient, and Godfrey-Smith was chosen in the Banking and Finance category. Awards will be presented at the Women of Excellence Awards Gala on May 6 in Baton Rouge …


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