Still 'crashing,' Cooperative Trust shifts gears for 2020

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The Cooperative Trust, the nationwide young professionals group for the credit union movement, will be undergoing some changes 2020.

Regular “crash” events are still planned, with credit union professionals of (roughly) age 35 and younger continuing to “crash” industry conferences throughout the year, but other elements of the group are expected to change.

The first is the appointment of Cortney Angeley, director of community development at the Filene Research Center. Angeley was named the Trust’s next leader this fall in the wake of Lauren Culp’s departure after two years at the helm. Whereas Culp managed the group as its own entity, Angeley explained that it has now been transitioned into Filene’s wider community development programs. The goal, she said, is not just to continue cultivating future leaders within the credit union movement, but also to increase strategic foresight, partnership opportunities and more.

One of the biggest changes will be a rotating cast of credit union professionals leading the “crash” events. Angeley – who crashed the Credit Union National Association's 2016 Governmental Affairs Conference – will still lead the premier crashes, including CUNA’s GAC in February and America’s Credit Union Conference in the summer, but the group is exploring new ways for veteran crashers to get back involved in the process, including possibly leading smaller crash events, such as at various CUNA councils conferences. Some of the industry's youngest CEOs and executives are former crashers.

Continually changing who helms each individual crash will enable more up-and-coming credit union professionals to get face time with leaders in the movement and gain additional leadership skills, while also increasing networking opportunities within specific fields of the industry, said Angeley.

The 32-year-old is also continuing to look for ways to make the Trust self-funded and sustainable. While CUNA, Visa and others are major donors, Angeley said she and others at Filene are “constantly exploring opportunities for strategic partnerships with organizations that make sense and that want to support future leaders,” including TransUnion, CUNA Mutual Group and more. That is an ongoing process, she added, and there is no firm target date for being self-sustaining.

As reported, the Cooperative Trust won a 2017 Herb Wegner Memorial Award from the National Credit Union Foundation.

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