"The credit union industry needs to reflect the community," said Pablo DeFilippi, a senior vice president at Inclusiv, the association for community development credit unions, a past CEO of the Lower East Side People's Federal Credit Union in New York, and a leading voice in the push for more Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in the credit union universe.
He points out that, as nation, we are becoming ever more diverse. Indeed, by 2045, the US will become "minority white," according to demographers.
The time for change is here and, said DeFilippi, he hopes we are moving beyond statements alone - well meaning as they may be - and into action.
He reminds us that the nation's first credit union, St. Mary's Bank, was founded in 1908 by French Canadian immigrants in Manchester, New Hampshire, who felt excluded by mainstream financial institutions.
DeFilippi's point: this kind of outreach is in the credit union DNA, it is a mission credit unions are well positioned to fulfill.
DeFilippi worries that the nation's minority depository institutions will be under particular strains as the nation's deep recession amounts to an existential threat.
But he also is pleased to be able to report that Inclusiv members issued perhaps $1 billion in PPP loans (and note this interview was recorded just before the PPP application deadline was extended from June 30 to August 8th).
Listen to why he is optimistic that we are indeed on the edge of real changes.
It's an upbeat podcast.
There are many related podcasts in this series, including #100 with Victor Miguel Corro of Coopera, another CU DEI Collective member, 101 with Renee Sattiewhite of the African American Credit Union Coalition, and also Cathie Mahon, CEO of Inclusiv, also a CU DEI Collective member. And a podcast with Cliff Rosenthal, a pioneer in the CDFI world.
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