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Kansas CUA Innovation Lab Think Tank Team Selected
WICHITA, Kan. (8/12/13)--The Kansas Credit Union Association's Innovation Lab Think Tank Team has selected it members.
The members of the Think Tank team are:
  • Michael Augustine, vice president of lending, Frontier Community CU, Leavenworth;
  • Gary Austin, vice president, operations and payment systems, CU of America, Wichita;
  • Adrienne Basham, business development/financial counselor, Central Star CU, Wichita;
  • Jenny Boyd, marketing, TECU CU, Wichita;
  • Chuck Bullock, president, TECU CU, Wichita;
  • Vickie Hurt, president, Quest CU Topeka;
  • LaRae Kraemer, president, Kansas State University FCU, Manhattan;
  • Garth Strand, president, Hutchinson CU, Hutchinson;
  • Geoff Strole, mortgage development officer, Truity CU, Lawrence;
  • Lisa Traphagan, vice president, branch development, Quest CU, Topeka;
  • Ginger Wehner, regional vice president, Truity CU, Lawrence;
  • Kim Wheelock, information service manager, Mid American CU, Wichita;
  • Lee Williams, CEO, Central Star CU, Wichita; and
  • Corey Winter, branch manager, Meritrust CU, Wichita.
Team members range from Gen Yers who serve as financial counselors and marketers, to seasoned CEOs. The team is using technology to better serve its members. It is nearly evenly divided male and female, and members represent credit unions ranging in asset size from $53 million to more than $800 million.
"In order to foster open innovation and explore the full spectrum of creativity, we assembled a diverse Think Tank team," said Melissa Baptista, KCUA research and development director. "The younger demographics' enthusiasm is contagious, and their ability to see projects from another perspective is just as important as the experiences and insights brought to the table by our veteran credit union leaders."
At the first meeting of the Think Tank, in Lawrence for a creative brainstorming session, the team divided into two groups. Each was asked to come up with projects or ideas that would further the Kansas credit union industry and provide value to the state's 630,000 credit union members.

The ideas will be presented to boards of KCUA and Shared Financial Solutions--KCUA's wholly owned, for-profit subsidiary that focuses on member service offerings in September. If the boards approve the ideas or projects, they will be given to the Dream to Destination team for implementation.

The Innovation and Implementation Lab was created to encourage continuous curiosity to generate revolutionary ideas to serve Kansas credit unions and their members. 

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