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CU System briefs (08/11/2008)
* MEMPHIS, Tenn. (8/12/08)--HOPE Community CU, a community development credit union based in Jackson, Miss., has opened its first Tennessee-based branch in the Midtown neighborhood of Memphis, said the U.S. Department of Treasury's Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFI) Fund. The branch will provide a full range of affordable financial services and affordable alternatives to predatory and subprime lenders. HOPE is a certified CDFI sponsored by the Enterprise Corp. of the Delta (ECD). "By working with a range of partners, both public and private, ECD/HOPE has become one of the nation's most effective CDFIs," said CDFI Director Donna J. Gambrell, noting it had used a $15 million allocation and converted it into more than $50 million in loans for economically distressed communities (US Fed News Aug. 1) … * NAPERVILLE, Ill. (8/12/08)--The Illinois Credit Union League (ICUL) is promoting healthy lifestyles for its staff. ICUL just concluded its first "Biggest Loser" competition, a 12-week competition with 20 staff losing 214.6 pounds total. Nearly 80 employees participated in ICUL's first wellness screenings, which test blood pressure, body mass, and check for cholesterol, diabetes and more, and health risk appraisals, where participants answer dietary and lifestyle questions IN addition to flu shots and blood drives, the league also has incorporated healthier food choices at its staff social functions and added an "ICU Well" page on its intranet with nutrition and fitness website references, healthy recipes and other information. "We even quit putting out the candy dish at our reception area," said Dan Plauda, ICUL president/CEO … * SAN JOSE, Calif. (8/12/08)--Four people have been arrested after two masked men, who had been thwarted by Pacific Postal CU's bandit barrier earlier in the week, returned Friday and held up the credit union, threatening to shoot the tellers and members. They fled with more than $76,000. Alert witnesses helped identify the assailants after they were seen getting out of a Jeep and into a sedan. Witnesses said one of the men resembled a relative of a former employee who had been fired over a shortage in her cash drawer. Arrested were Sefo Sagote, 26; Elisara Taito, 25; the former employee Angelica Sagote; and Donnisha Harrell (San Francisco Chronicle Aug. 10) … * WARNER ROBINS, Ga. (8/12/08)--Robins FCU President/CEO John Ruffin announced he will retire Dec. 31, after 37 years in the credit union industry. Ruffin was hired at the credit union as executive vice president in 1997. He became CEO in 2003. Previously Ruffin was retired from the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA), where he served for 26 years in several positions, the last of which was as Regional Director in Austin, Texas. John Rhea, current executive vice president at Robins Federal, will succeed Ruffin in the CEO position on Jan. 1, 2009. Rhea started his career at Robins Federal in 1996. He has 30 years' experience in the financial industry … * OSHKOSH, Wis. (8/12/08)--Douglas (Doug) Arent, former board chair of CitizensFirst CU, Oshkosh, Wis., died Aug. 6 at his residence. He was 75. An employee of Rockwell International until he retired in 1988, Arent served on the board Wisconsin Axle CU (now CitizensFirst CU) and on the CitizensFirst board from 1973 to 2000. He was board chair from 1978 to 1993. Arent served on the board of directors of the Wisconsin Credit Union League from 1984 to 1999 and was a member of numerous committees (The League Aug. 11). He is survived by his wife Carol, a daughter, two grandchildren, two sisters, a brother, two stepchildren and four stepgrandchildren. Funeral services were Monday. (The Aug. 10) …


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