Illinois Credit Union Foundation
Remember those you have lost, honor a colleague’s professional accomplishments or celebrate your credit union’s milestones through the Illinois Credit Union Foundation’s Commemorative Program.
When a special person dies, one who has graced your yesterdays with love and friendship, you want to remember him or her in a profound and lasting way. Likewise, when a colleague reaches a professional milestone, for example, retirement after a distinguished career, you want to recognize him or her and celebrate their accomplishments. Commemorative gifts to the Foundation are an appropriate way to show your affection, respect and appreciation which expresses the “People Helping People” ideal of credit unions.
Memorial & Tribute Awards
Memorial and Tribute Awards are established in the name of the honored person for contributions totaling $500 or more. Memorial awards are recognized during the Illinois Credit Union League’s Annual Convention during the year in which the award is established.
When a memorial or tribute fund reaches at least $2,500, a perpetual scholarship may be established. A perpetual award is acknowledged during the Illinois Credit Union League’s Annual Convention for eternity.
In a Tradition of Caring
Commemorative gifts to the Foundation express the credit union spirit of “people helping people.” From your gifts of the heart, others can grow in knowledge and ability to serve so that the credit union movement will continue to thrive.
Illinois Credit Union Foundation
The Foundation is an outward expression of the “People Helping People” credit union philosophy, and provide a way to foster those ideals throughout Illinois. Since 1978, the Illinois Credit Union Foundation has awarded more than one million dollars in scholarships, community involvement projects, community service grants, and small credit union assistance since its inception.
Gifts can be made payable to “ICU Foundation” and sent to PO Box 3107, Naperville, IL 60566-7107. Please indicate the name of the person being honored in the memo portion of the check. The Foundation notifies the honored person or his/her family of your thoughtful gift. Please include an address where acknowledgements should be sent.
Questions? Contact the Illinois Credit Union Foundation at 800-942-7124.
Gene Artemenko’s career at United Airlines Employees’ Credit Union spanned four decades. He served as president of the credit union from 1973 until 1991. Gene was a strong activist and also served on the Board of Directors of American Share Insurance, the Trust for Credit Unions, and the Governor’s Advisory Board.
Gene received numerous prestigious awards, including the Roy F. Bergengren Award and the United Airlines Award of Merit and Langel Award. In his personal life, Gene was an avid swimmer and played an active role in his church, serving as an elder and as a member of many committees.
Gifts from credit unions, related organizations, friends and family established this award.
Betty Belker began her credit union career in 1956 with Gardner Denver Employees Credit Union, now known as United Community Credit Union in Quincy.
Betty began as Treasurer and held several positions until she retired in 1992 after 36 years of dedicated service. Under her leadership, the credit union expanded its field of membership, and opened a new permanent facility and branch office.
During her career, Betty has also served on the Quincy Chapter’s board as Secretary, Legislative Representative and a member of the audit committee. In addition, she also served on the Illinois Credit Union League’s board for 10 years.
Today, Betty still works part-time at the credit union and along with her husband George, attends most chapter meetings. This part-time tenure, combined with her 36 years of full-time service, adds up to nearly 50 years in the credit union movement. As a fitting tribute to her many years of dedicated service, Betty was also inducted into the Illinois Credit Union Hall of Fame in 1997.
Betty’s award was made possible by contributions from United Community Credit Union and the Quincy Chapter of Credit Unions.
This overwhelming generosity has allowed the Foundation to establish a scholarship award in her memory to be presented annually.
In 1977 Roger became a Field Representative with the Illinois Credit Union League, and assisted more than 100 credit unions with issues including bookkeeping, board policies and planning, regulatory compliance, and general management issues. In 1985, he moved on to become CUNA’s Director of Planning and Consulting, followed in 1987 by a move to Arizona to serve as the Arizona League’s Vice President of its Service Corporation.
However, Roger moved back in 1988 to Illinois to become Regional Manager for the ICUL Service Corporation, a position he will hold until April 2011.
During his more than 45 years with the credit union movement, Roger’s commitment to his work partnerships and friendships never wavered. He has remained a stalwart supporter of credit unions, the League, CUNA and his community. Roger has been a constant presence in the credit unions he serves providing assistance, knowledge, strength and friendship.
Donations from credit unions, chapters and friends have established the Roger Brainerd Perpetual Tribute Award in his honor.Credit unions, chapters, and individuals from throughout the state are remembering Donna with memorial gifts to the ICU Foundation.
Jim served as President and CEO of Scott Credit Union for more than 20 years. During his tenure, the credit union grew from two branches and $50 million in assets to nine branches and more than $355 million in assets. Scott is currently the fourth largest credit union in the St. Louis metropolitan area.
Jim was second vice chairman of the Defense Credit Union Council at the time of his passing. He served as chairman of the council from September 1996 through August 1999. He also served as chairman of the Southern Illinois Chapter of credit unions, chairman of Mid-States Corporate Federal Credit Union’s credit committee, treasurer and chairman of the Midwest Defense Credit Union Sub-Council, and president of the St. Louis Credit Union Management Association.
Jim received the prestigious Executive of the Year Award from the Illinois Council of Credit Union Executives in 1992. He was also a member of the James S. McDonnel USO Board of Directors, the Leadership Council Southwestern Illinois Board of Directors, and Leadership Council Southwestern Illinois Military Affairs Committee.
This award was established with a $5,000 contribution by Scott Credit Union. Gifts from Southern Illinois Chapter, area credit unions and individuals who knew Jim helped bring the fund to more than $10,000.
Douglas W. Callies began his career with CUNA Mutual Insurance in 1980 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin as a Member Coverages Representative. He was promoted to supervisor shortly thereafter managing the states of Wisconsin and Ohio.
In 1983, Doug was transferred to Southern Illinois and was responsible for the service and sales of the six southern Illinois credit union chapters as an Account Manager. He was recognized as a President’s Council qualifier.
Doug’s involvement with the chapters wasn’t limited to just working with the accounts. He was active in many chapters, serving as an auctioneer for CUPAC fundraisers, promoting fundraising golf outings, and working with community projects. He is a recipient of the George G. Burnett Chapter Award of Merit.
After a career of 37 years, Doug retired on March 30, 2007. To honor this occasion, credit unions, chapters and friends made donations in his name.
Up until her very recent retirement, Maxine worked for SIUE Credit Union for 37 years, serving as its CEO for more than 20 years of those years. Not one to sit still, she is currently a board member there. She has also served on the board of CUPAC for more than 15 years, including as Chairman. She is retiring from that position later today.
At the chapter level, Maxine is still very active in the George G. Burnett Chapter and has held every officer position. Maxine is currently the League Director for the Burnett Chapter and also served as its legislative representative for five years. Maxine found time to earn her CCUE designation and teach CCUE classes in Madison for 15 years. In addition, she was also named the CUES Illinois Council’s Executive of the Year award in 1983.
Today, we pay special tribute to Maxine Callies, a friend and colleague, in recognition of her support and friendship.
As the Director of Sales and Service Training at Baxter Credit Union, he motivated the staff by telling compelling service stories. He was also the type of individual who had a kind word for everyone. He always asked how you were doing and wanted to make sure you had everything you needed.
Even from his hospital bed, Torrance was thinking of ways he could improve the credit union’s call monitoring to further enhance the skills of its employees. That’s just the type of person he was.
According to Baxter Credit Union CEO Mike Valentine, “Torrance has truly left some sort of mark, footprint, impression, and/or memory on everyone with whom he came in contact. His warm, smiling face will be sorely missed. Torrance will not be forgotten and he will be etched in our hearts forever.”
Torrance also had a passion for his two sons, Justin and Evan, and Jennifer, his wife of over 20 years.
Donna Carlino retired in 1993 after devoting 15 years of service to the League. In appreciation, her family, friends, and co-workers, in addition to numerous credit unions, made gifts to the Foundation to establish a perpetual scholarship in her honor.
Len was active in the credit union movement for 42 years, during which time he helped charter two credit unions–District 103 Teachers Credit Union and District #143 Employees Federal Credit Union.
He worked as a junior high school teacher and a school principal until he retired in 1986. Upon his retirement from the school district, Len’s involvement with the credit union movement increased. He served as Treasurer of District #143 Employees Federal Credit Union and was a key figure in expanding its field of membership. He also became a chapter leader in the Southeast Chapter and earned the coveted chapter merit award for his years of dedicated service.
Many colleagues, friends and credit union members contributed in loving memory of Len to his scholarship fund. Family members matched their gracious donations, bringing the total gift to $5,000. Leonard will long be remembered for his tireless efforts on behalf of the credit union movement and his commitment to “people helping people”.
Norm is a very involved member of the Southeast Chapter, serving on the chapter board, as past chairman, past vice-chairman, and as a member of many committees. His service to the chapter extends years into the past. Norm has also been the Foundation Chapter Representative for the Southeast Chapter for many years.
His commitment to the Foundation is evident and he can often be seen at the Foundation’s booth in the Exhibit Hall selling raffle tickets.
Eastern Federal Credit Union recently merged, and as a lasting final gesture, decided to honor Norm by establishing the Norman R. Cole Perpetual Tribute Award.
This past chairman of the League board and board member of Aurora Burlington Credit Union, served the Aurora Chapter for more than 50 years.
Ron was also a resource to the Regional Directors that reported to him throughout his more than 38 years of service, as well as to other League and LSC staff. He showed his support of the movement by attending chapter events, fundraisers, credit union annual meetings and League sponsored education sessions to keep abreast and in tune with what was needed to help his credit unions survive.
We acknowledge his selfless contributions as Vice President of Regional Management from 2001 to 2014. This tribute additionally acknowledges Ron’s dedication to serving as Account Vice President from 1996 to 2001; Director of Regional Management from 1993 to 1996; Regional Manager from 1991 to 1993; Director of Auxiliary Services from 1987 to 1991; Special Projects Manager from 1986 to 1987; Supervisor of Member Services and Liaison to the Illinois Youth Involvement Council (IYIC) from 1982 to 1986; Director of Member Services from 1979 to 1982; and Field Representative from 1976 to 1979.
Ron is also recognized for providing staunch support during his System career to countless credit unions and many chapters, including Aurora, Joseph S. DeRamus, Thomas W. Doig, Kankakee Valley, Northern Cook County, and Southeast among others, with basic and strategic planning, assisting credit union staff and boards of directors in their day-to-day operations, services, programs, policies, and training, as well as many other consulting services.
In many cases, Ron was the face of the Illinois Credit Union League and was the first line of contact for member credit unions. His dedication on behalf of the movement and his tireless support and commitment to Illinois credit unions will always be appreciated and remembered. Ron’s outgoing personality, relationships built over decades with credit union staff and board, and his love for the movement will ensure his place in the history of Illinois credit unions.
Janice’s 37-year career in the credit union movement is filled with “firsts.” She was the first woman, and only the second person in Illinois, to earn the coveted Certified Credit Union Executive designation. Janice was the first woman to serve as Chairman of the Illinois Credit Union League when she was elected in 1987.
At the same time she was the board chair of Mid-States Corporate FCU, board chair of the ICUL Service Corporation, and served as a national director of CUNA. She was part of the first “merger of equals” when Dynamic Credit Union and Members Equity Credit Union combined to form NuMark Credit Union.
She also was selected to attend the World Council of Credit Union’s International Forum, which was held in Ireland, where she participated in the first International Women and Credit Union symposium. The first women’s golf outing, known as the Dempsey Open, was named in her honor.
As people who know her say, Janice is, and will always be, one of the great ones.
He was a skillful and knowledgeable writer and was often contacted by the Credit Union Journal and Credit Union Times to share his thoughts on various “hot topics”. He had a loyal credit union fan base that followed his “Letters to the Editors” faithfully.
Mike also became a key player and mentor in developing programs for South Division’s student branch at Brother Rice High School. He was instrumental in providing support and guidance to the Chicago Metro Chapter serving as the Legislative Representative. In 2012 Mike provided countless hours and inspiration in organizing the Chapter’s sponsorship of the Chapter Leaders “Hollywood” themed conference.
Mike also expanded his knowledge of the international credit union movement by traveling to other countries to attend WOCCU meetings. His dedication and commitment to the movement spanned local, national and international arenas.
Mike’s love for golf was evident in his participation in and support of various charitable outings and with the “Biloxi Boys” throughout his credit union career.
Mike served proudly in the United States Navy and those years of service to his country provided him with the discipline, work ethic and dedication needed to make him a leader within his credit union, chapter and community. He was outspoken and always willing to share his knowledge and spirited opinions with his peers. Mike was hardworking and dedicated to making sure that South Division Credit Union and the credit union movement were the best they could be.
He was interested in politics and participated in candidate interviews, fundraisers and legislative meetings. He was proud to discuss the benefits of credit unions with members of Congress and the legislature.
Mike Dillon’s memory will live on through all those he inspired and assisted at South Division CU, the Chicago Metro Chapter and his community.
Noni never wavered in this philosophy and was a lifetime credit union cheerleader. She moved on from those founding days to work for decades with the present staff of the credit union, including Ed Uhrik and George Wagner.
She was active in the Northern Cook County Chapter of Credit Unions and many times assisted in legislative matters and political action activities.
Noni touched many in the credit union movement and will always be remembered. Her personal integrity, strong belief and commitment to service made Noni a role model for many of our up and coming leaders.
It was the first credit union in its region to offer checking accounts, home banking, and social media channels. They started using MySpace back when Facebook was just an idea in Mark Zuckerberg’s head. Mac’s commitment to provide the right product at the right time for the right member has allowed the credit union to grow and thrive.
Mac has also given his time to credit union organizations serving on both the chapter and League boards. In addition, he has volunteered in his community and given his time and energy to helping Junior Achievement, the Salvation Army, the American Cancer Society, the American Heart Association, Easter Seals, the United Way and local food drives.
His success will be measured not only on the great achievements he made for the survival of the credit union but also on the inspiration and support he provided to those he worked with and the members helped.
Additionally in 2013, Don was honored with a Commemorative Tribute Award for his service to the League. Don’s introduction to credit unions was as an Assistant Manager with Laclede-Alton Works Employees Credit Union in 1964.
He joined the Illinois Credit Union League in 1974 as a field consultant in the Southern Illinois area. He was appointed Director of Field Services in 1977 and then moved on to become Director of Resource & Information.
By 1982, Don had moved on to the legislative area becoming Director of Governmental Affairs, which included coordinating legislative affairs for state and federal credit unions, overseeing the administration of CUPAC, and League publications. In 1984, Don became the Vice President of Governmental & Public Affairs, overseeing legislative, compliance/regulatory and political action activities on behalf of credit unions. In 1992, he was promoted to Senior Vice President of Federal Governmental Affairs.
Don has been a key player in such issues as the introduction of share drafts, recodification of the Illinois Credit Union Act, the Operation Grassroots Rally, CUPAC, Hike-the-Hill events, Lobby Day, legislative interviews and events, and the building of a strong statewide political action coalition.
Don is well known and respected by lobbyists and legislators both in Washington and Springfield. Throughout his career, he has dedicated his time and knowledge to promote the benefits of credit unions to the legislature, the press and the communities at large.
He has spent countless hours at Chapter meetings, credit union and League annual meetings, legislative events, board meetings, and community events to help educate, promote and support the credit unions that the League serves.
Don was honored in 2013 with a Credit Union Hall of Leaders Award that was presented to him at the Governmental Affairs Conference in Washington, D.C. by CUNA CEO, Bill Cheney.
Don committed a lifetime to the credit union movement and he will be remembered by those he represented and counseled so well over the last 39 years.
During his tenure with the Service Corp George also played an integral role in the development of products and services including credit and debit cards, ATM network deployment, surcharge free ATM networks, pre-paid products, debenture investment programs, collections, item processing and indirect auto lending. George was also instrumental in the rebranding of the Service Corp to LSC to better serve members nationwide.
George is well respected in Illinois and throughout the country for his dedication and commitment to helping credit unions compete. He leads by example and is admired and liked by both League and LSC staff. He is a team player and supported credit union related projects through LSC sponsorships and competitive product pricing, especially for small credit unions.
George played a significant role in the development, growth and success of the LSC and the Illinois Credit Union League. His leadership is responsible for LSC’s role as a national leader for credit union products and services. The success LSC has achieved under George’s management is evident in the number of credit unions across the country that use its products and services. Without George Fiegle, the credit union movement would not be nearly as strong as it is. George’s role in the development and success of LSC will remain as a major achievement of his impressive credit union career.
John’s list of achievements and accomplishments is impressive. He currently is serving as the league director from the Northern Cook County Chapter, a position he has held since 1989. He served as League Chairman from 1994 to 1996.
He has been a member of the ICU Foundation Board since 1987 and served as chairman from 1989 to 1991. John was a board member of the National Credit Union Foundation from 1996 to 2004 and was chairman from 2001 to 2002.
John was named Executive of the Year by the Illinois CUES Council in 1995, received the Motorola CEO Certificate for Volunteerism in 1992 and 1993, received an award in 2004 from the Motorola Foundation for his volunteer service, the Spirit of Service Employee of the Year Award from the Illinois Credit Union System in 1999, and was inducted into the Illinois Credit Union Hall of Fame in 2000.
The National Credit Union Foundation and the Northern Cook County Chapter both made generous gifts in John’s honor to establish this award.
Dev will always be remembered by his chapter and friends for his commitment to credit unions. As a further memorial tribute, the chapter’s annual golf outing now bears his name.
Penni came to the League in 1983 and is looking forward to enjoying her retirement beginning in June of this year. As Regional Director, she has spent her entire System career reaching out to credit union and chapter officials to assist them on a daily basis with operational and management issues. She has been sought after as an expert on conducting credit union board planning sessions and brought the Future Search program to credit unions.
Penni has also been a major force behind the League’s annual Chapter Leaders’ Conference. She has been an inspiration not only to credit union officials throughout Illinois but also to many friends she leaves behind at the League and Service Corp.
Penni leaves behind her more than 30 years of dedication and commitment to the credit union movement, she will not be forgotten or easily replaced. Contributions from credit unions, chapters and friends have established the Penni Gebke Perpetual Tribute Award in her honor.
George received countless sales awards and honors. He qualified for the prestigious President’s Council 10 times. He built many strong and lasting relationships over his 30-year career.
While dedicating his life to serving credit unions, he held several positions within CUNA Mutual, including Sales Manager and Account Vice President. George lived the “people helping people ” motto. He worked hard to help credit unions be successful and became close friends with many he served.
Gifts from Motorola Employees Credit Union, the Illinois Credit Union League, ICUL Service Corporation, CUNA Mutual employees, Eldon Arnold, CEFCU, and other credit union friends established this award in George’s memory. Accepting the award on George’s behalf is his nephew, Steve Gilrowski.
The Fox Valley Chapter conducted a number of fundraisers to create this award.
Rollie served on the board of Members Choice Credit Union for nearly 45 years. During that time he served as a mentor, role model and “face” of the credit union. Rollie was a true gentleman. He was a good listener, extremely kind and treated everyone he worked with and met with dignity and respect. All these outstanding traits were evident throughout his tenure on the board and his role as the Supervisory Committee Chairman. Rollie will be truly missed at the credit union but his lifetime of dedication and hard work on behalf of Members Choice will never be forgotten.
Dick has been involved in the credit union movement for the past 40 years. For more than half of his career, Dick worked at Alliant Credit Union (formerly known as United Airlines ECU) and worked his way up from Credit Manager to Senior Vice President when he retired from the credit union in 1993.
During his tenure, Dick was a member of the credit union’s board of directors, serving as Secretary for 13 years and a credit committee member. He was also very active with the Northern Cook County Chapter, serving as Chapter President prior to joining the League’s Board of Directors in 1976.
Dick served on the League Board for 16 years in numerous capacities, including Chairman from 1985 to 1987. During this time, he also served as Chairman for the ICUL Service Corp, the ICU Foundation and Mid-States Corporate Federal Credit Union, as well as a CUNA National Director.
Upon the second retirement of his career, from the League Board in 1993, Dick joined the Illinois Credit Union League staff, where he currently works as Executive Vice President and Chief Administrative Officer. Since then, he has also been inducted into the Illinois Credit Union Hall of Fame.
She continued in that position until she retired on March 28, 2008, just two weeks after she celebrated her 26-year service anniversary. Barbara’s most notable accomplishment is moving the credit union from manual transactions where everything was handwritten or typed on account ledger cards into the computer age where all the transactions are handled using electronics.
This change allowed the plain vanilla credit union, which offered only shares and loans, to grow and offer many new services to members.
This tribute is being made by Joyce’s the many friends and associates to commememorate many years of devoted service she has given to her credit union family and community.
Her impassioned belief and active participation in preserving the credit union alternative in limited-income communities will always be her shining achievement.
Joyce has been involved with the credit union movement for almost 40 years. She was first introduced to credit unions when she became a board member for Michael Reese Hospital Employees Federal Credit Union. She became president of that credit union in 1984 and remained there for 13 years. While CEO at Michael Reese, Joyce was active on her Chapter board and was elected to the Illinois Credit Union League board where she served from 1990-1994. She also served two terms as Chairman of the League, LSC, Mid-States Corporate Federal Credit Union and CUPAC. In addition to her Illinois credit union duties, Joyce also served on the CUNA board from 1991-1994.
Joyce was instrumental in the formation of the Chicago Area Network of Credit Unions in the late 1980s that was created to focus on extending financial services within limited income communities.
In 1994 Joyce was appointed to serve as the Director of the Office of Community Development Credit Unions by NCUA Chairman Norman D’Amours. In this newly created position, she was responsible for interacting directly with the credit unions serving economically distressed communities. In that role, she pioneered the first national conference for credit unions serving the underserved and worked closely with the World Council of Credit Unions as an advisor to South African regulators and government agencies on the “People to People” program that highlighted the benefits of credit unions.
In 2000, Joyce became the CEO of First Continental Community Federal Credit Union in Landover, Maryland. She served as CEO of this faith based credit union until 2002 when she returned to Illinois to become a Regional Director. As a Regional Director, Joyce continued her commitment to faith based credit unions and those serving underserved communities. She has shared her dedication and knowledge with Illinois credit unions through training, onsite support, chapter and community involvement projects and myriad other programs. She has been an incredibly valuable resource.
Joyce has spent almost her entire life serving the credit union community in a wide array of roles. She is a dedicated, committed role model and mentor for many within the credit union movement.
There has been much turmoil in the newspaper industry over the past 33 years, especially during the past decade when ownership has changed hands. The “plain vanilla” credit union steadfastly served its members during the trying times. People fondly remember the days when they received 13 percent dividends on savings. Patricia guided the credit union and upgraded its technology during her tenure at the credit union.
After his passing in February 2004, Al’s many friends and colleagues, including the Biloxi Boys, made additional donations in his memory.
Thank you to everyone who contributed to Al’s fund. We will miss him.
Marge became chairman of the board in 1998 where she has led the credit union through a community charter expansion and the addition of a variety of new services, like online banking and debit cards, for members. Marge and her husband, Ron, host an annual barbeque at their home for VAMCO staff and board members as her way of saying “thanks” for everyone’s hard work throughout the year.
John “Jay” McCaughey Sr. was a strong proponent for small credit unions, a staunch supporter of the Illinois Credit Union System, specifically the Thomas W. Doig Chapter of Credit Unions, and advocate in his local community.
Jay, as his friends called him, dedicated his life to serving people. He was a lifetime resident of Gurnee, Illinois.
Jay’s career began in 1956 when he took over as treasurer of the Warren Township Credit Union (now Community Trust CU) and ran it out of his basement. All the while, he maintained his full time position as postmaster. When he retired from the post office in 1978 he assumed the duties of president full time. He retired in June 1997 but continued his involvement as the board treasurer until 2006.
Jay’s commitment to the credit union movement was evidenced by his involvement in the Doig Chapter. He served as chapter chairman, treasurer and league director. The Doig Chapter golf outing was renamed the McCaughey Open in honor of him. He served on the ICUL board of directors from 1992 to 1996. Jay was also inducted into the Illinois Credit Union Hall of Fame in April 1997.
ICUL Chairman of the Board, John Bratsakis, who also served at the helm of Community Trust Credit Union from 1999 until 2007 and has been serving as League Director of the Doig Chapter since 2001, recently reflected on the impact McCaughey had on him.
“Jay’s legacy of more than 40 years in the credit union movement is known to many and his contributions to the credit union movement and the local community have been significant,” said Bratsakis. “Jay touched a lot of us in many ways, whether it was personally or professionally. He was always there to lend a hand for whatever you might need.”
ICUL President/Chief Executive Officer, Dan Plauda, also offered a warm remembrance about Jay and added, “Jay was a very special person and I spent many pleasant hours with him. I had the honor of speaking at one of his retirement parties and at many of his community events. He will be incredibly missed.”
“I have known Jay for many years and the thing that will always stay with me is his love of people and his willingness to go out on a limb for them. That is what made him such a great fit for the credit union movement and especially CTCU (Community Trust Credit Union),” said Madeline Lipka, the credit union’s President/CEO. “He lived the credit union motto of ‘People Helping People’. His legacy lives on through his daughter Betty Fallos, who is now a branch manager at Community Trust.”
He is survived by his wife of 67 years, Elaine McCaughey; his son, John J. Jr.(Nancy); daughters, Ann, Mary (Steve) Furrer, Betty (Elmer) Fallos; numerous loving grandchildren, great grandchildren, nieces, and nephews.
Jay quietly gave of himself to the credit union, the movement and to his community.
The boards of directors of Warren Newport Credit Union and the Thomas W. Doig Chapter of Credit Unions made it possible to present the John “Jay” McCaughey Perpetual Award annually.
In addition to his inspirational and outgoing leadership at VAMCO, Larry made many contributions on both the state and national levels. He was one of the founders and a charter signer of Mid-States (now Members United) Corporate FCU, a League director from 1971 to 1980, and served as an alternate CUNA director.
VAMCO and the Foundation salute this self-sacrificing, dedicated credit union volunteer.
After ABE merged, Ida was approached by James Ousley, former ICUL field rep, to work with the tiny $200,000 asset VA Credit Union, which was going through some difficult times. Thanks to Ida’s dedication and hard work, the credit union grew into a $1.2 million credit union that consistently received CAMEL 2 ratings.
Chuck was known throughout the country as an advocate for small credit unions. He chaired CUNA’s Small Credit Union Task Force and served as a member of CUNA’s Board of Directors since 1997.
Here in Illinois, we had the pleasure of knowing Chuck on a more personal level. Throughout his 24 year career in the credit union movement, he developed strong and lasting friendships. The ICU Foundation received generous gifts from Glenbrook Credit Union and the Northern Cook County Chapter to establish a memorial fund.
Thanks to the thoughtful donations of friends, colleagues and co-workers, Chuck’s legacy will be remembered forever.
Gary has been a director of the Illinois Credit Union League since 1998, the same year he earned his Certified Credit Union Executive designation. He served as chairman of the League from 1996 to 1998. He visited all the chapters during his tenure to discuss key issues such as credit union unity and the Campaign for Consumers Choice.
Gary was also a director and chairman of the ICUL Service Corporation. He has been a board member of the ICU Foundation since 1987 and served as chairman from 2002 to 2004. He retired from the Foundation board yesterday.
Gary received the Manager of the Year Award from the Illinois CUES Council during 1993. He was inducted into the Illinois Credit Union Hall of Fame during 1998.
This award was established by the Central Illinois Chapter of credit unions and augmented with gifts from credit unions and friends. In his typical, generous fashion, in lieu of retirement presents, Gary requested people make donations to the Foundation. The response was tremendous, generating more than $4,700.
Larry demonstrated his support of the Illinois credit union movement and the League through his service as a member of the League board for 10 years. Larry enjoyed representing his colleagues and friends in the Joseph S. DeRamus Chapter through this role.
During his career, Larry dedicated much of his time to credit unions through working for Midwest Operating Engineers Credit Union, and Archer Heights Credit Union, as well as in small ways like his e-mail address, which included “Mister CU”.
At its November 2005 meeting, the League board posthumously paid special tribute to Larry with the reading of a resolution honoring his distinguished service, which was then presented to his wife, Sallie.
We know that Larry would have enjoyed being with us here today, as he was also a member of the League’s Annual Convention Committee during the entire time he was a director of the board.
Larry’s life clearly exemplified the movement’s “People Helping People” philosophy and was a good friend who will be dearly missed.
Con soon became the “go to” guy for answering policy, regulatory, compliance, and procedural questions from credit union people around the state. He has provided invaluable advice throughout his career not only to credit unions, but also to CUNA, NCUA and the DFI on behalf of the Illinois Credit Union League. His legacy to the credit union movement in Illinois rests in his indepth analyses, reviews, and clarification of rules and regulations from A to Z that will live on through his contributions to Comment Letters, Legislative Alerts and the Information Manual.
Con has also served as the “unofficial” historian of credit union and League related topics, and has shared that information and credit union related “stories” and facts at Chapter meetings, League annual conventions and credit union annual meetings.
His indepth knowledge of all things credit union related made Con a highly regarded and respected League staff member. Con retired from the League in 2012 after more than 36 years of dedicated service.
Pete was a staunch advocate for CUPAC and was active in local politics, including serving as a Rock Island city councilman from 1978 until 1980. Prior to working at the credit union, Pete worked at Rock Island Millworks Company and served in the Air Force from 1954-1957.
Pete participated in local activities, including the Moline Morning Kiwanis Club. Pete was an active member of 15th Avenue Christian Church in Rock Island since 1983. He served as church treasurer, chairman of the board, deacon and elder.
Gifts from credit unions, chapters, friends and family from throughout Illinois established this award in memory of Pete.
As the Foundation grew and credit union needs became more complex, grants were added to help small credit unions remain competitive, particularly in the area of technology. Grants funds can be used to purchase computer equipment, office supplies, and marketing materials. Grants have been expanded to cover data processing needs and the development and implementation of new products and services.
The ICU Foundation had raised more than $4.5 million dollars from its inception through the end of 2013. The Foundation has disbursed more than $3.5 million in scholarships and grants.
This Tribute Award is a fitting way to honor the person who found a way to channel the cooperative spirit of credit unions in a manner that they could help each other and who has served the credit unions of Illinois for more than 37 years.
Nearly 70 individuals, credit unions, chapters and related organizations have donated in excess of $16,000 to the ICU Foundation to establish the Daniel D. Plauda Perpetual Tribute Award.
Under Bill’s leadership, the credit union has grown from nearly 16,200 members to more than 47,000 and from $14 million in assets to over $365 million. In addition, the credit union has also expanded its operations to include five branch locations, including two in its headquartered town of Waukegan.
Bill is also a friend to his community, having worked tirelessly for community organizations and many civic boards, including the Lake County Chamber of Commerce. For this organization, he served three terms on the board, including as President.
He worked for four credit unions, took an active role as a League Director for the Illinois Credit Union League and received many awards and accolades during his career. He earned the first Certified Credit Union Executive designation in the state and received the CUES Manager of the Year Award in 1987. People who knew Ron admired his deep belief that adding value through personal service set credit unions apart from other financial institutions.
This perpetual award was made possible thanks to the generosity of Central Credit Union of Illinois, friends of the Reuter family and a group of colleagues known as the Biloxi Boys.
Jim Roche has a long and distinguished career in the credit union movement. Beginning in 1983 Jim has held various management positions at three credit unions that included administration, finance, operations and lending. In 1994 he took over as CEO of Premier Credit Union, then Palatine-Schaumburg Credit Union, and helped it grow from a $32 million credit union into a $185 million credit union. In 2015 Premier merged with Consumers Credit Union where Jim worked as President until retiring on April 1st of this year.
In addition to his role at the credit union, Jim has served on the boards of the Northern Cook County and Heffernan Chapters in various capacities. Jim has served on the Illinois CUES board and earned the title of Executive of the Year in 1998 for credit unions under $50 million in assets. He was also on the supervisory or credit committee for Mid-States Corporate Federal Credit Union from 1998 until 2006.
Jim earned his financial counseling certification from CUNA and achieved the Certified Chief Executive designation from CUES.
In addition to his many credit union achievements and activities, Jim is currently secretary of the Palatine Township Republican Organization and a member of the Northeastern Illinois University Foundation board
Bob is a long-time member of the credit union and has served on the board of directors since 1982. He has diligently served as board secretary for the past 14 years. His dedication is renown. Neither rain, sleet, snow or illness will deter Bob from attending and fully participating in credit union meetings.
Bob originally became a credit union director because he believes in the “people helping people” philosophy of the credit union movement. His hope is that the spirit of cooperation continues as the industry evolves.
In addition to his credit union activities, Bob is a long-time volunteer for the Chicago Boys Club and is active in golf and bowling leagues.
Ray has been an integral part of the credit union’s growth and expansion of services. When he joined the credit union board in 1967, Motorola ECU had assets of $6.6 million. Today, it has assets of $670 million and offers its members a wide variety of financial services.
As a small token of their appreciation, the board of directors of Motorola ECU thanks Ray for his many contributions and continued dedicated service by establishing this Perpetual Tribute Award in his name.
He set his sights early on the credit union movement for good, and sealed his future in 1971 by becoming general manager of IAA Credit Union. As testament to his commitment, Dean saw his credit union celebrate 50 years of service in 2001— 30 of which had him at the helm of IAA Credit Union.
His roots with the Illinois Credit Union System extend almost as far back as his credit union career, as he served as League Director from 1973 – 1977, and was inducted into the Illinois Credit Union Hall of Fame in 1996.
Bonnie Soltesz has been involved with credit unions for 25 years. She began as a member service representative at B.A.E. Credit Union in Barrington in 1990. Bonnie was named President of B.A.E in 2001 after the retirement of Bob Soule. Under her guidance B.A.E. Credit Union grew from $19 million to $43 million in assets. Bonnie was involved with the Fox Valley Chapter Board for 15 years serving first as Secretary and then Chairman. She is one of the leaders in Illinois that brought together four healthy and similar sized credit unions in a partnership to better serve their members. The result, Partnership Financial Credit Union, is the first of its kind in Illinois.
As Executive Vice President of the credit union, Cheri has been instrumental in the development and introduction of new products and services, coordinating and finalizing several mergers, and adding new SEGs. She was responsible for the renovation of two IECU offices and the opening of three full-service facilities.
In addition to her responsibilities at IECU, Cheri has expressed her enthusiasm and love for the credit union movement as an active participant in a wide variety of organizations. She was on the Governor’s Board of Credit Union Advisors for ten years, serving as Chairman from 1995-1996. Cheri was on the CUPAC Board from 1993-1997 and served in a number of Chapter board positions for the Sangamon Valley Chapter, including Chairman, Vice Chairman, Treasurer, Secretary and Legislative Forum Representative.
Cheri also believes strongly in community involvement and was named Business Associate of the Year for 1990-1991 by the Lincoln Land Chapter of the American Business Women’s Association. She has been heavily involved with several Springfield Public Schools Districts, their staff and families.
Cheri’s legacy of serving IECU’s members by providing the products and services they need to succeed will be the cornerstone for future development. Her 37 years of commitment and dedication to the credit union, its members and the community, is what makes the credit union movement stand out. Cheri has proven that strong leaders make the difference!
Jack began his credit union career in 1976 when he was hired as a manager trainee at Glass Workers Credit Union in Ottawa. Three years later he was promoted to President expanded its charter to include the community and adopted its current name.
Jack grew his credit union into a more than $200 million financial cooperative and strived to support and build his community into a better place through staff involvement in local events and projects. His staff regularly participates in local charity events and volunteer in a wide array of financial literacy projects with local schools.
Jack also has personally contributed countless hours of his time to assist the credit union movement by serving on the League, Chapter and CUPAC Boards of Directors. He was named Illinois CUES Executive of the Year in 1982 and 2000 and also won the distinguished US Chamber of Commerce Small Business Award for Excellence in 2005, 2006, 2007 and 2009.
In 2012 Jack was inducted into the Illinois Credit Union Hall of Fame, an honor reserved for the most distinguished credit union leaders.
Jack Teausant is outstanding example of a credit union professional that has devoted his life to helping others through his leadership at the credit union, mentoring his staff, providing support of the League and Tri-County Chapter, actively engaging in legislative advocacy, and participating in community involvement.
The board of directors has chosen to recognize Joe for his many years of dedication and commitment to the members of the credit union by funding an ICU Foundation Perpetual Award in his name. In his quarter century of volunteer service, VAMCO Credit Union has grown from a small, single-sponsor credit union to its current status, serving over 125 member companies. During his tenure as a director, Joe served on various committees and as chairman of the board from 1988 through 1998.
Please join me in congratulating, Joseph Tenerelli.
Charlie was hired by League Managing Director, William Brietzke in 1958, as a field representative responsible for servicing 130 credit unions in four chapters. He was responsible for not only assisting these credit unions, but also for teaching bookkeeping skills and organizing new credit unions. Charlie helped organize more than 100 credit unions during his time as a field rep. At the time, Illinois and California were in a race to see which state would have the greatest number of credit unions.
Charlie held a variety of positions at the League during his 29-year tenure, including Director of Field Services, Director of Research & Information, and Vice President and Chief Operating Officer/Credit Union Development.
Charlie was a truly unique individual who brought dignity, wisdom, knowledge and an ironic wit to all that he did. He was a devoted husband to Mildred and their adopted son Brett. Charlie passed away in November 2010 but his dedication and commitment to credit unions, their ideals, and his friends and family will never be forgotten.
Gifts from friends and former co-workers established the Charlie Thompson Memorial Award in his name.
This has included coordinating the credit union’s candy and balloon fundraiser for the Children’s Miracle Network.
She could also be easily considered the backbone of the Joseph S. DeRamus Chapter. She attends all chapter meetings, and represents her colleagues at special events like the League’s Legislative Day in Springfield. She has served in many capacities since her involvement began in 1994, including Legislative Forum Representative, First and Second Vice-Chairman, and Chairman for seven years, a position in which she currently serves.
As if volunteering for credit unions wasn’t enough, Virginia in her spare time has also been extremely active with other groups in her community, such as the local American Legion, where she has headed up Easter, Halloween, and Christmas parties for veterans in area nursing homes. One of her friends has been quoted as saying that she is truly a “People Helping People” person if there ever was one.
Ed Uhrik began his credit union career in 1975 when he became CEO of Brach Credit Union and he never looked back. In 1977 he took the CEO position at Central Region Postal Credit Union and four years later was named CEO for the American Law Enforcement Credit Union. In 1986 Ed was responsible for opening the Chicago office of Credit Union 1. Ed found his forever home when he took over as CEO at New Trier Federal Credit Union in 1987. He has been extremely active in the Northern Cook County Chapter, attending meetings and serving on the Chapter board in various roles, including Chairman. Ed plans to retire this year after forty years of serving credit union members in the Chicago area. One of the issues he is most proud of is that after 28 years of service at New Trier he is leaving knowing that the employees have been protected and member services have been taken to a higher level with the newly formed Partnership Financial Credit Union.
In 1963, Chet became the first professional treasurer and manager of Illiana Financial (previously known as Illiana Federal) Credit Union. He opened its first small office. Two years later, he left the credit union to join the Illinois Credit Union League as a field representative. He retired from the League in 1983, after serving as assistant managing director and vice president of credit union development.
Chet didn’t retire from credit unions, though. He went back to work for Illiana as SEG director and added more than 300 small companies to the field of membership. Chet was also a representative to the World Council of Credit Unions; he was assigned to facilitate financial improvement for troubled credit unions in Bermuda.
Chet was a wonderful example of “people helping people,” and was well loved and respected throughout the credit union movement. Gifts from family, friends and local credit unions established this award.
George was a board member for 20 years, from 1985 until 2004. He was chairman of the board for 8 of those years and chairman of the supervisory committee for 10 years. George played an instrumental role in the relocation of the credit union from within the school to a new building of its own.
He was passionate about the facility and was in charge of the Building & Grounds — a job he loved and took to heart. A job where he used his own hands to make many improvements including siding the back of the building, installing shelves, and tiling the entry floor.
George was known as a kind, dedicated person who never expected anything in return for his volunteer service to the credit union.
The award, which was made possible by a generous gift from New Trier Federal Credit Union, was announced at the credit union’s annual meeting last month. Sadly, George died the next day. He will be dearly missed by his credit union family.
Les Willerth became involved with the credit union movement in 1974 when he was hired as the Manager of the Illinois Credit Union League’s Central Collection Service. In 1977 he took a position as a Vice President at Edison Credit Union in Chicago and then moved on to CEO of Hall-Roto-Central Credit Union. Les expanded his knowledge and respect for the movement by attending CUNA Management School where he earned the Award of Excellence for Superior Project Achievement, as well as earning certifications for CUNA’s Financial Counseling, Lending, and HR schools. He has been an active member of the Northern Cook County and Brietzke Chapters, serving in various board positions, including Chairman. Throughout his career he has been involved in attending legislative fundraisers, candidate interviews and legislative conferences. He also served as a member of the Governor’s Advisory Board Associational Field of Membership Task Force Committee. Until he joined with the group that formed Partnership Financial Credit Union, Les was CEO at VAMCO Credit since 1987.