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May 03, 2005

Massachusetts and Bahamas Partnership Focuses on Governance

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(L-R) Leroy Sumner, BCLL board member; Nathaniel Adderly; Karen Duffy; Paula Dion; Rufus Johnson; and Francis Davis

Nassau, Bahamas – The signing of an official partnership agreement and good governance training were the focus of a recent International Partnership exchange in the Bahamas. Members of the Massachusetts Credit Union League visited Nassau April 13-15 to learn more about the Bahamian credit union system and to finalize their partnership agreement with the Bahamas Co- operative League Ltd. (BCLL). Also in attendance, representing World Council of Credit Unions, Inc. (WOCCU), was International Partnerships manager Victor Corro.

On the first day of the visit, Paula Dion, senior vice president of professional development and information for the Massachusetts Credit Union League and Karen Duffy, president and CEO of Worcester Credit Union gave a workshop at the Bahamas league entitled "Good Governance – What Makes a Good Board," covering such topics as global commitment, governing style, board member's code of conduct, the chairperson's role, board committee principles, the cost of governance, and board-CEO linkage. The workshop was attended by approximately 40 board members from various league-affiliated credit unions, as well as Nathaniel Adderly, director of cooperative development, Government of the Bahamas and Wendy Warren of the Bahamas Financial Services Board. At the end of the workshop, Adderly declared it and the partnership a success, saying, "We encourage this type of exchange and welcome the relationship between Bahamas and Massachusetts."

The second day, the delegation toured the BCUL offices and the Bahamas Law Enforcement Co- operative Credit Union Ltd. and participated in a banquet celebrating the latter's 20th anniversary.

Board and management of the Bahams Law Enforcement Cooperative Credit Union Ltd.; Massachusetts league representatives; and WOCCU's Victor Corro

The last day, the three were joined by Massachusetts league chairman Eugene Foley for a tour of two other Bahamian credit unions, the Transportation & Service Industry Co-operative Credit Union Ltd. and the Teachers & Salaried Workers Co-operative Credit Union Ltd. The size and scope of these to credit unions, as well as those visited the previous day, are quite diverse, each providing unique perspectives on the Bahamian credit union system. Representatives from the Bahamas league visited Massachusetts for the same purpose in November of last year.

At a ceremony at the Teachers & Salaried Workers Co-operative Credit Union, the partnership agreement was signed by Mr. Foley, representing the Massachusetts league, and BCLL representatives Francis Davis, general manager; Rufus Johnson, president of the board; and T. Carmichael Brown, secretary of the board. The partners have agreed on a number of goals for the next year, including items related to branding and marketing strategy, financial services, education for board members, and insurance.



World Council of Credit Unions is the global trade association and development agency for credit unions. World Council promotes the sustainable development of credit unions and other financial cooperatives around the world to empower people through access to high quality and affordable financial services. World Council advocates on behalf of the global credit union system before international organizations and works with national governments to improve legislation and regulation. Its technical assistance programs introduce new tools and technologies to strengthen credit unions' financial performance and increase their outreach.

World Council has implemented more than 290 technical assistance programs in 71 countries. Worldwide, 57,000 credit unions in 103 countries serve 208 million people. Learn more about World Council's impact around the world at www.woccu.org.

 



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