Minnesota Story Archive

Royal Credit Union receives two awards from the Minnesota Credit Union Network

January 5, 2024 — Royal Credit Union (Royal) received an Engagement and Outreach Award and a Digital Advertising Award from the Minnesota Credit Union Network (MnCUN). The awards were presented by MnCUN during an in-person ceremony on December 13, 2023.

The Engagement and Outreach Award recognizes Royal’s Correctional Facility Financial Education (CFFE) program, which teaches responsible spending, building a budget, managing a checking account, borrowing money, and setting financial goals to a justice-involved population that would otherwise not have access to financial education. In 2023, Royal brought their programming to the Hennepin County Jail in Minneapolis, making it their eleventh correctional facility partnership across Minnesota and Wisconsin. In addition to facilitating the CFFE program in the Hennepin County Jail, Royal also continually supports job training and other post-incarceration support through yearly donations to Hennepin County Sheriff Dawanna Witt’s HOPE program.

The Digital Advertising Award recognizes Royal for their social media influencer campaign with Minnesota influencer couple and long-time Royal Members Josue and Sarah, whose social media accounts are focused on home renovation tips and do-it-yourself projects. In a video posted to Instagram, TikTok, and YouTube, the couple showcased a tutorial for a do-it-yourself end table while sharing the benefits of having a checking account with Royal. This campaign was a great success in increasing user engagement on Royal’s social media profiles.

Minnesota Senate Approves Marijuana Legalization Bill Days After House Companion Passes

Courtesy of Kyle Jaeger , MarijuanaMoment.net

May 5, 2023 — The Minnesota Senate has finally approved a bill to legalize marijuana that advanced through 13 committees, setting the stage for a conference with the House to resolve differences with a companion reform measure that the chamber passed on Tuesday.

The Senate passed the legislation from Sen. Lindsey Port (D) in a 34-33 vote on Friday. This comes just two days after the proposal cleared its final committee, with amendments. Read more

Minnesota CU Network Names New President/CEO

Courtesy of CUToday.info

Screenshot 2023-04-12 at 9.22.41 PMApril 14 2023 — The Minnesota Credit Union Network has named a new president/CEO to succeed the retiring Mark Cummins. The organization has named Mara Humphrey as the organization’s next president/CEO. Humphrey is currently chief advocacy and engagement officer.

“After a national search, the board is unified in the choice of Mara Humphrey as the next CEO of the Minnesota Credit Union Network,” said Mary Hansen, board chair and CEO of Mayo Employees FCU. “The board was deeply committed to a rigorous leadership selection process and understood this to be the most important work of our board terms. Mara is a proven champion for credit unions and a respected, innovative leader in the industry. Her vision and passion will ensure the success, growth and vitality of Minnesota Credit Unions for years to come.” Read more

Minnesota Department of Commerce; Financial Institutions Credit Union Division Receives 2023 NASCUS Reaccreditation

The National Association of State Credit Union Supervisors (NASCUS) is proud to announce that the Minnesota Department of Commerce; Financial Institutions Credit Union Division has earned Reaccreditation following a series of in-depth reviews and assessments by a panel of veteran state supervisors.

“As a great testament to the commitment and determination put forth by our team of Minnesota credit union examiners, the Minnesota Department of Commerce, Financial Institutions Credit Union Division is pleased to receive reaccreditation from NASCUS,” stated Minnesota Chief Examiner State Chartered Credit Unions, Aeton de Long-Hersh. “This process validates the diligent work our team accomplishes every day. It’s an honor to receive this designation.” Read more

TruStoneTruStone Financial Donates $10K to High School Teams

Courtesy of CUToday

Jan. 20, 2023 — TruStone Financial Credit Union (MN) donated a total of $10,000 to 10 high school athletics programs as a sponsor of KARE 11’s Prep Sports Hot Highlights.

Each week, KARE 11 News Anchor Randy Shaver nominated three top football plays from area high schools, and KARE 11’s social media followers picked a favorite. Winners were announced every Friday, and TruStone Financial donated $1,000 to each of the winning schools’ general athletic and activity funds.

“TruStone Financial is a dedicated partner and for the eighth year has helped make the KARE 11 Prep Sports Hot Highlights program possible,” said Shaver. “We are able to recognize and support so many talented athletes and programs.” Read more

Minnesota CU Spreading its Wings to Wisconsin with Bank Acquisition

Nov. 4, 2022  — The $8-billion Wings Financial CU is entering the Wisconsin market with the acquisition of the $390-million Settlers Bank in Appleton, Wis. Wings will acquire all three locations of Settlers—in Appleton, Madison, and Windsor, Wis. The bank is located approximately 300 miles east of the credit union’s headquarters.

The deal, still pending approvals from state and federal regulators, is expected to close in mid-2023, Wings reported. When the transaction is complete, Settlers Bank locations will be re-branded as Settlers Best Credit Union, a division of the $8.048-billion Wings Financial Credit Union.


TopLine Financial CU Receives New Charter & New Name

Courtesy of Michael Ogden, Credit Union Times

The credit union has switched from a federal charter to a state charter.

August 1, 2022  — Three months after its board and membership voted to approve its move from a federally-chartered credit union to a state-chartered credit union, TopLine Financial Credit Union received final approval for the charter conversion effective Aug. 1.

Along with the new charter, TopLine ($675 million in assets, 47,476 members) changed its name from TopLine Federal to TopLine Financial.

According to a statement on Monday, TopLine officials explained the shift to a state-chartered credit union will allow TopLine to drastically expand its field of membership from seven Minnesota counties to 11.

“We are thrilled to receive final approval for TopLine’s conversion to a state-chartered credit union,” TopLine President/CEO Tom Smith said. “This is a significant opportunity for us to broaden our reach in more communities to serve more individuals, families and small business owners, to act as a resource to advocate for financial well-being, as well as support additional social responsibility efforts to positively impact our communities; all to better fulfill our cooperative mission of helping people.”

While TopLine will continue to be insured by the NCUA, it will now be regulated by the State of Minnesota Department of Commerce. According to TopLine, more than 70% of Minnesota’s credit unions are state-chartered credit unions.

“We’re excited about serving even more of our Minnesota friends and family,” Smith said. “This exciting time in TopLine’s history would not have been achieved without the hard work and dedication of our employees, board of directors, members, (the) NCUA and the Minnesota Department of Commerce. The Commerce Department has been a true partner during the application process, and we thank them for their guidance to make this possible.”

Minnesota Credit Union Foundation Launches Effort to Raise $1M to Establish Black-Led Credit Union and CUNA Mutual Announces Donation Match
Courtesy of CUToday.info

May 2022 – The Minnesota Credit Union Foundation said it has launched an effort to raise $1 million in capital from the credit union community to support the establishment of Village Financial Credit Union, a Black-led de novo credit union.

Village Financial
CUNA Mutual Group recently announced it will be offering a donation match – dollar for dollar up to $250,000 – for individuals and credit unions who donate now through June 30, 2022.

“CUNA Mutual Group believes brighter financial futures should be accessible to everyone. As a result, we are proud to provide this support and hope this match opportunity encourages those in our movement who have not provided a donation to do so now,” said Gerry Singleton, vice president of credit union system relations. “Supporting this effort aligns with who CUNA Mutual Group is an organization and ties directly to our mission of building economic empowerment and financial security for everyone.”

About ABEP

The Association for Black Economic Power (ABEP), a nonprofit organization created to establish a Black-led credit union to address systemic financial challenges impacting Minneapolis residents, particularly people of color, is currently raising capital for post-opening operating expenses for Village Financial Credit Union.

“Establishing the only Black-led, cooperative credit union in Minnesota is an opportunity to effect positive change, empower growth and economic stability, while directly addressing the core cause of systemic poverty on a variety of levels,” said Debra Hurston, executive director Association for Black Economic Power. “Thank you to CUNA Mutual Group for this support. We are thrilled to be a part of the cooperative movement and are excited to see this initiative get another step closer to fruition.”

Shining a ‘Light’

Added Mark Cummins, president of the Minnesota CU Network and Minnesota CU Foundation, “Credit union history and principles are rooted in serving the underserved and cooperation among cooperatives. The credit union movement’s support will not only help the community members of Minneapolis, but it will also help to shine a light on how our cooperative model can be a solution for change across the country.”

For additional info: visit mncun.org/villagefinancial

Four Minnesota CUs Launch Commercial Lending CUSO
The goal of United Financials Capital is to support commercial lending collaboration and opportunities for CUs throughout the Upper Midwest.

Courtesy of Natasha Chilingerian, Credit Union Times

thumbnail_United FinancialsMay 2022 – Four Minnesota-based credit unions have launched a new CUSO that will enable numerous credit unions to collaborate on lending opportunities for public and private commercial and infrastructure projects in Minnesota and the Upper Midwest, the new CUSO announced Tuesday.

The four founding credit union members of the new CUSO, named United Financials Capital (UFC), are:

The new CUSO’s leadership includes Michael Dalglish as CEO and founder, and Dave Boden, president/CEO of Hiway, as board chair.

“Speaking on behalf of the founding credit union CEOs, we’re excited to launch United Financials Capital, moving beyond ideas and discussions to collaborative action,” Boden stated. “We’re here to bring the power of credit union values and the combined resources of our organizations to the commercial lending marketplace. We believe this is just a starting point: Our mission, and obligation, is to serve and support Minnesota credit unions of all sizes. We deeply believe we are all stronger if we work together.”

According to his LinkedIn page, Dalglish brings a professional background in the banking industry and is currently an owner of Case Financial, a provider of banking equipment and maintenance services to financial institutions in the Upper Midwest; founder of the Minnesota non-profit United Financials Making a Difference; and an ambassador for NCR Corporation.

A few of UFC’s objectives are to reduce costs, increase revenue and create new opportunities for credit unions in the commercial lending space, according to the announcement.

Read the entire article here.

Minnesota’s Commissioner, Grace Arnold Joins the MnCUN Impact 22 Event

The Minnesota Credit Union Network hosted a series of state-level meetings this week, guests included Senate Majority Leader Jeremy Miller, Minnesota House Speaker Melissa Hortman, and Commerce Commissioner Grace Arnold.

This event provided an overview of legislative priorities for this session and a high-level look at the most recent consumer survey.

For more information on Impact 22, contact Ryan Smith, MnCUN Director of Governmental Affairs, with questions.

Minnesota Credit Union Foundation announces capital drive to support black-led CU

Published in CUNA News

February 1, 2022 — The Minnesota Credit Union Foundation has established a special fund to receive donations from supporters of Village Financial Credit Union, and is seeking to raise $1 million in capital from the credit union community. The Association for Black Economic Power (ABEP) is a nonprofit organization created to establish a Black-led credit union to address systemic financial challenges impacting Minneapolis residents, particularly people of color, and is raising capital for post-opening operating expenses for Village Financial Credit Union.

“Establishing the only Black-led, cooperative credit union in Minnesota is an opportunity to effect positive change, empower growth and economic stability while directly addressing the core cause of systemic poverty on a variety of levels,” said Debra Hurston, Executive Director of the Association for Black Economic Power. “The original organizers were very passionate about having a community-led credit union that would directly respond to the community wealth gap. Also, having the credit union-owned and operated by the community provides a huge source of pride and independence for the members.”

“Credit union history and principles are rooted in serving the underserved and cooperation among cooperatives,” said Mark Cummins, President of the Minnesota Credit Union Network and the Minnesota Credit Union Foundation. “Coming together to support this effort is one way we can put our DEI commitments into action. It’s simply the right thing to do.”


Consumers still in control with new debt collector rules that allow text, email, social media to seek repayment

January 4, 2022 — New debt collection rules now allow debt collectors to use email, text and social media messaging to track down consumers in seeking repayment of debts. While the new rules change how Minnesotans can be contacted by debt collectors, consumers are still in control to specify which communication method a debt collector can use. In some cases, the new rules offer more protection to consumers and change the way collection agencies conduct their business.

The Minnesota Department of Commerce, which licenses individual debt collectors and collection agencies that conduct business in Minnesota, is alerting consumers to be aware of recent rule changes that may impact a consumer’s experience with the debt collection agency.

“If you’re contacted by a debt collector, you can specify which way you want to be contacted,” Minnesota Department of Commerce Commissioner Grace Arnold said. “You can tell the debt collector to stop contacting you by text, email or social media, and instead say how you would prefer to be contacted. As a consumer, you are still protected under the new rules.”


Coopera Collaborates with Minnesota Credit Union Network to Study Statewide Demographics

August 18, 2021 — A partnership between the Minnesota Credit Union Network and Coopera will produce a report outlining opportunity for multicultural membership growth for Minnesota credit unions. This partnership will play a part in the Minnesota Credit Union Network’s mission to ensure the growth and vitality of Minnesota credit unions, as well as to support diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) initiatives within the credit union movement.

Coopera is nationally recognized within the credit union industry as a resource for underserved market growth. Formerly a Hispanic-focused company, Coopera has recently evolved to include many of the growing multicultural segments in the U.S. Coopera leads the way for diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives in the credit union space and partners with several Leagues across the country.

“As the state trade association for Minnesota’s credit unions, our purpose is to offer knowledge and resources that benefit our credit union community,” says Minnesota Credit Union Network President & CEO Mark Cummins. “This partnership with Coopera will help unveil opportunities for Minnesota credit unions to grow market share and determine ways for more consumers to be served by credit unions in the future.”


Affinity Plus Becomes One of the First Credit Unions in Minnesota To Launch Contactless Cards for All Members

February 22, 2021 – Minnesota’s second-largest credit union just completed reissuing new, contactless card technology for more than 209,000 cards used by its 218,000 members. Since July, Affinity Plus Federal Credit Union (Affinity Plus) has invested $1.5 million in contactless card technology to safety and security for members amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We strive to be a leader in bringing convenient, secure payment experiences to our members,” said Nic Peterson, Vice President of Payment Systems and Card Services, Affinity Plus. “Contactless card technology builds a better experience by offering a faster, more secure transaction. This has been critical during the pandemic as contactless cards allow for less contact with cashiers, payment terminals and ATMs, making it safer for our members.”

Benefits of contactless card technology include:

  • Safety of the Cardholder: Transactions at checkout take less time and allow for a quick tap or hover over the terminal, meaning less physical contact and less potential for transmitting germs.
  • Security of Account Information: Each transaction uses a one-time code to ensure safe payment and keeps your information safe from fraud. Because they don’t make physical contact, cards are more difficult to read or copy illegally. Each payment is initiated by the merchant, so cardholders cannot accidentally pay if they are near the terminal or tap the card more than once.


Minnesota Dept. of Commerce reminds regulated firms of customer obligations and investors about risks of stock price volatility

January 29, 2021  Minnesota Department of Commerce reminds regulated firms of customer obligations and investors about risks of stock price volatility

The Minnesota Department of Commerce today called on financial management firms, financial advisors and other regulated entities to ensure that investor protection obligations are being met during recent price volatility in shares of certain publicly traded companies.

“Regulated entities have an obligation to their customers. Commerce will work with fellow regulators to ensure that investor protection, fairness and transparency are upheld in the public securities markets,” said Maxwell Zappia, Commerce Deputy Commissioner of Financial Institutions. “We are closely monitoring this developing situation and will examine actions by online brokerages and others to ensure that they are in compliance with their client obligations.”

The Department of Commerce also cautioned investors about the risks associated with investing in publicly traded companies that are experiencing volatility. Investors should understand their risk tolerance when considering such investments.

The Department of Commerce has more info more here: Investor education materials.

Jessica Looman takes reins as commissioner; Rothman steps down after 7 years
Nov. 17, 2017 — Jessica Looman is appointed to serve as Commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Commerce. Beginning Friday, Nov. 17, Commissioner Looman succeeds Commissioner Mike Rothman, who announced the same day his plans to step down after seven years of service.

SJU Student-Run Credit Union Branch Provides Hands-On Experience
April 22, 2015 – Collegeville, Minn. – The Collegeville Community Credit Union is a perfect example by having the first student-run branch on a university campus in Minnesota. The branch location is small (Only 120 square feet) but President Mark Douvier says it provides a convenient location for students.

Free Paper Shredding Events Throughout Twin Cities in April, May
April 7, 2015 – It’s tax time. Purge your piles of sensitive data in a hurry instead of feeding a personal shredder two sheets at a time. Now through May, there are plenty of free or low-costshredding options in the Twin Cities.

Student-Run Credit Union Branch Adds Access, Experience

November 16, 2014 – Collegeville, Minn. – The “office” where Nico Marusco works isn’t really an office at all. It’s more like a wooden counter that separates a 120-square-foot space from the surroundings outside the St. John’s University Bookstore in Sexton Commons. 

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