We all know that change is the only “constant” successful organizations anticipate, plan for, and manage as time marches on. When change occurs or is necessary, the choice is simple: adapt or wither away. How many department stores, communication devices, and video arcades are no longer part of our culture?
In terms of military planning, who remembers “AirLand Battle” vs. “Full Spectrum Warfare” in terms of military doctrine? How about all those weapons systems that evolved over time? One thing is for sure, if you don’t accommodate change properly, it can be very expensive.
As the Defense Credit Union Council (DCUC) enters its seventh decade of service, we have seen a lot of change both in our industry and throughout the military. We celebrated an expected change at last month’s DCUC Annual Conference where the Chairman’s gavel was passed from Bill Birnie to Jack Fallis. Both are extremely qualified leaders with years of credit union CEO experience.
I really enjoy working with Bill and his continued leadership as he remains on the board. I also look forward to working with Jack in his new role as Chairman. Plus, we have a great DCUC Board of Directors who are very supportive and bring additional leadership qualities to our Board. More on that later.
This change comes at a pivotal time for DCUC as we look toward and plan for the next ten years. We were already well on our way in terms of implementing new ideas and value changes as part of our strategic plan. Today, with all the industry changes in terms of mergers, league consolidation, and CEO transitions, we are very excited about the opportunities created by this moment for DCUC and its member credit unions.
As the nation’s third largest credit union association representing over a quarter of the industry, we are experiencing growth in terms of members and partner organizations. This growth is a direct result of DCUC’s implementation of new strategies, resources, and in turn, increased member value over the last 5+ years. Yet, there are many areas in which DCUC and its members can grow and strengthen their presence in.
First, there is a large veteran market with over 18 million current or potential members who could be better served by credit unions who “speak military.” This is where DCUC can provide value and assistance to all credit unions. We already have several programs and resources designed to help you better connect with your members who are currently serving or have served our country and DCUC will be adding more to our resource library in the near future!
Second, advocacy plays an important role in any trade association. We have seen a need for a unique voice on Capitol Hill on not just military-related, but also larger credit union issues. As an independent trade association, DCUC has always viewed these voids as opportunities to bring impactful change and results for credit unions and the industry. Given the current climate on Capitol Hill and within the credit union industry, now is the time for us to pursue and perfect our approach to building a stronger advocacy program.
Finally, collaborating with other credit union system partners is the key to moving our industry forward. Whether it is another trade association, league, or service provider—we want to work with you! If you attended our 60th Annual Conference last month, you saw how this works in real-time. Collaboration has the potential to bring about incredible reward and value; why stop?
A lot of this success is due to your Defense Credit Union Council Board of Directors! Each director is highly qualified to make important contributions as they set the strategic focus for our organization. Moreover, their support for the DCUC staff and myself is second to none. I commend our membership for electing each of these directors!
I am incredibly thankful to be your CEO, and I am very excited about our prospects for the future and sustained progress toward our objectives. I not only look forward to working with you, but also talking to you about your credit union’s growth and learning how we can help you overcome obstacles along the way. Most of all, I appreciate your friendship and continued dedication in “serving those who serve our country!”