Maine League Meeting Features Lawmakers

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PORTLAND, Ore.-More than 600 people representing 53 of Maine's 65-member credit unions turned out for the Maine CU League's annual meeting here.

Among the keynoters were Brian Branch, COO and EVP of Madison, Wis.-based World Council of Credit Unions and a Maine native. Branch updated Maine's CUs on the World Councils efforts around the world, including ongoing efforts to assist Haiti in recovering from the January earthquake. Maine's credit unions have donated some $30,000 to assisting in that recovery.

Other speakers included Rep. Mike Michaud and Rep. Chellie Pingree, who addressed the convention in person, while Senator Snowe sent a video message and a staff member from Senator Collins' office spoke on her behalf.

Michaud, who opposed having an interchange provision in the Financial Reform Bill without a formal hearing, advocated raising the cap on member business lending, as did Pingree, Snowe and Collins.

Mark Sievewright, Senior VP at Fiserv, outlined the many changes that have and are occurring in the financial services industry and called the next decade "unprecedented. He told the meeting that credit unions must continue to be proactive and adapt to the changing landscape of financial services to remain relevant, vibrant and strong in the next ten years.

John Murphy, president of the Maine league, told the meeting, "Despite all of the challenges of the past two years, credit unions have thrived and grown because we have not turned our backs on consumers as so many other financial institutions opted to do. That philosophy continues to give us many opportunities for continued success in the future."

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