New NCUA Diversity Executive Seeks Insight On Topic From CDCUs

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HOLLYWOOD, Calif.-The director of NCUA's new Office of Minority and Women Inclusion has had five months on the job, and she is glad she does not have to tackle the monumental undertaking by herself.

Tawana James said OMWI is tasked with ensuring women and minorities are included in staff and management at credit unions, as well as having access to financial services CUs offer.

"The Office has been in operation for five months, and after five months it is clear there is a lot of work to be done to have diversity in the financial services industry," she told attendees of the Federation of Community Development Credit Unions' 37th Annual Conference on serving the underserved. "There needs to be diversity in both management and employment.

"It does matter that women and minorities are represented, which shows how important the work of the Federation is. As credit unions serving the underserved, you see how the impact of the economy falls more heavily on minority communities," she told the audience.

Because many CDCU leaders have vast experience serving minority communities, James said she wants to work with the Federation. She said the group shows women and minorities matter, as do the lives of the underserved.

NCUA is looking for ways to increase access to jobs at credit unions for women and minorities, but without adding to the reporting burden for CUs, she said.

"I am not expected to do this alone," she said. "The plan is to solicit feedback from credit unions to get their perspective. We need collaboration so we can achieve the greatest impact."

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