NYSCUL & PR CUs Partnership Announced
First to sign the partnership agreement was Luis R. López, Cooperativa Abraham Rosa (seated left). Looking on were (clockwise from left): Victor Corro, WOCCU; Samuel Rivera, Cooperativa de Ahorro y Crédito Padre Mac Donald; Efrain O'Neill & Kerwin A. Morales, Cooperativa de Ahorro y Crédito Jesús Obrero; John C. Gibardi, Entertainment Industries FCU; Celestino Rivera, GrupoVisión Empresarial; and William J. Mellin, NYSCUL.
Latham, NY – The New York State Credit Union
League (NYSCUL) announced their partnership with
Puerto Rican Coopertivas (credit unions) and the
World Council of Credit Unions (WOCCU). The
partnership is a commitment to mutual assistance
and a framework for a relationship that will
stretch into the future. It also represents the
culmination of several meetings and discussions
between the two credit union entities.
"We are excited about the potential benefit to New
York credit unions this agreement will offer,"
said NYSCUL President/CEO William J. Mellin.
"Especially to those credit unions that serve
areas with a high Puerto Rican population."
"This alliance represents the best of the
commitment of 'people helping people' made by
credit union movements throughout the world,"
added Victor Coro, international partnerships
Last Monday, the League welcomed five delegates
from coopertivas to continue a discussion,
initiated during a November visit to Puerto Rico,
on core services and the kind of assistance they
could provide. They also explored business
opportunities with the League's affiliates and
Empire Corporate FCU.
The Puerto Rican contingent had and received
answers to many questions, talked about financial
cooperatives in their territory, the many
parallels to our credit union system and to New
York itself, given the state's large Puerto Rican
Participating in the meeting were guests:
- Luis R. López, executive president,
Coopertiva Abraham Rosa ($91 million in assets)
- Samuel Rivera, executive president,
Coopertiva de Ahorro y Crédito Padre Mac Donald
($49 million in assets)
- Kerwin A. Morales, executive president, and
Efrain O'Neill, board member, Coopertiva de Ahorro
y Crédito Jesús Obrero ($34 million in assets)
- Celestino Rivera, president and consultant,
- Victor Corro, international partnerships
manager, World Council of Credit Unions
From the League were:
- William J. Mellin, president/CEO
- John C. Gibardi, board member,
president/CEO, Entertainment Industries FCU
- Michael Lanotte, SVP, Association
- Ed Kovalefsy, SVP, Support Services
- Diane LaVigna-Wixted, executive director,
New York Credit Union Foundation
- Ron McLean, director, Executive Affairs
- Donna Chardeen, director, Compliance
- Kim McCumber, VP, Card Services
- Dick Maxstadt, VP, Operations, CUC Mortgage
The meeting was a great success, culminating with
the official signing of the international
partnership agreement and a request to visit a
couple of large credit unions locally.
The League brought the group to tour the
headquarters and a branch of SEFCU and Sunmark
FCU, respectively. They got a first hand look at
operations at both credit unions, learned about
each credit union's history, mission, core values,
product and services, rates, growth and credit
union best practices.
"This provided an opportunity for our colleagues
from Puerto Rico to learn about SEFCU products,
the way we operate and how we help our members
with their financial services needs," said Michael
Castellana, president of SEFCU.
"The opportunity to host the delegation and to
further promote WOCCU's inititative is a great
opportunity for Sunmark and our industry," said
Bruce Beaudette, president/CEO, Sunmark FCU.
SEFCU is one of the largest credit unions in
upstate New York, serving over 130,000 members in
the Capital Region, Binghamton, and Syracuse
areas. SEFCU has assets of more than $1.2 billion
and offers a full range of deposit and loan
products and services, as well as business
banking, online banking, electronic bill payment,
and eStatements. For more information visit
Sunmark FCU is a full-service, community chartered
credit union that serves more than 46,000 members
and businesses and has assets of $406 million. For
more information, visit www.sunmarkfcu.org.
Empire Corporate Federal Credit Union (
www.empirecorp.org) is a $4.9 billion
financial institution that provides wholesale
investment, credit, payment and correspondent
services to over 1,000 credit unions. Empire has a
national field-of-membership and is headquartered
in Albany, NY, with branch offices in Jamesburg,
NJ; Sioux Falls, SD; and Warwick, RI.
WOCCU ( www.woccu.org) is the apex
trade association and development organization of
the international credit union system. It serves
more than 123 million people worldwide through its
regional confederations and national member
organizations in 84 countries.
The New York State Credit Union League has served
as the trade association for the state's credit
unions for more than 80 years. It is the fourth
largest league in the country. New York credit
unions have assets of more than $35 billion and
more than four million members. To learn more
about the League, visit
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 105 countries serve 217 million people. Learn more about World Council's impact around the world at www.woccu.org.
Contact: Bonnie Sklar
Organization: Credit Union Association of New York
Phone: (800) 342-9835 ext. 8130