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CCUL Headlines: Professional Development

Directors’ Conference focuses on unified visions, succession planning, and the future

Monday, July 22, 2013  
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CHARLESTON, SC (07/22/13) — As times change, new challenges arise, from emerging technologies to new regulations and time scarcity. Overcoming those challenges is what defines an excellent credit union board. These issues and more were explored by various guest speakers during SRCUS’ 2013 Southeast Regional Directors’ Conference, held July 14-17 in Charleston, SC.

The conference, hosted by the South Carolina Credit Union League (SCCUL), saw its highest number of participation in the last three years, with 210 attendees and 120 guests from the ten southeastern states of Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, Tennessee, South Carolina, and Virginia.

"You get one chance every ten years to showcase your state, so I’m thankful that this conference received so much participation,” said SCCUL Director of Conferences & Training Barbara Lehew-Bickley.

Held at Charleston Place Hotel, SCCUL quickly sold out rooms and had to expand accommodations to The Mills House and other surrounding hotels.

The weekend kicked off on Sunday, July 14 with a pre-conference workshop hosted by SCCUL Director of Member Services Latasha Cooper on fiduciary responsibilities. The workshop reviewed the general duties, forms, terminology, and financial literacy requirements for a credit union director.

The following day, guest speakers Rory Rowland (Rowland Consulting) and John Vardallas (The American Boomer) highlighted the importance of the Board/CEO partnership, the importance of strategic planning, and what it takes to become exceptional.

"Exceptional boards energize themselves through planned turnover, thoughtful recruitment, and inclusiveness,” said Vardallas.

"Strategic planning isn’t forecasting, eliminating risk, blind to today or blind to tomorrow,” said Rowland. "Strategic planning takes a grand vision and turns it into something useful.”

Tuesday was a half-day of sessions on generational economics, led by SC Federal Credit Union’s Troy Hall and the state of the U.S. economy, led by First Carolina Corporate Credit Union’s Fred Eisel.

By noon, credit union directors were adjourned and began their tours of Historic Downtown Charleston. Tour options included: A carriage tour, culinary tour, and bus tour. The evening came to a close with a dinner cruise on the ocean.

Guest speakers, John Wallace (CUNA Mutual Group) and Patrick Adams (St. Louis Community CU), closed out the conference on Wednesday, July 17. Wallace reviewed the importance of effective risk oversight, while Adams emphasized the importance of looking forward in your leadership role.

After a closing message from SCCUL President/CEO Steve Fowler, the conference ended and credit union directors made their way home.

"I have to thank my co-worker June Ballentine, Conference Direct’s Laura Kuechenberg, Dan Denning of Georgia CU Affiliates, Dorschey Coleman of Virginia CU League, and Tom McWilliams of Mississippi CU League for all the help they provided during this conference,” said Lehew-Bickley.

"We also could not have done it without support from our sponsors: CUNA Mutual Group, First Carolina Corporate Credit Union, Palmetto Cooperative Services, LLC/PCSi, and SC Federal Credit Union,” Lehew-Bickley continued.

Mark your calendar now for the 2014 Southeast Regional Directors’ Conference, which is scheduled for July 13-17 at the Westin Resort Hotel in Savannah, Ga. The conference will be hosted by the Georgia Credit Union Affiliates and the other nine supporting southeastern states.

View photos of the 2013 SE Regional Directors' Conference.