Dear President Obama:
Seventy-five years ago in the midst of the Great Depression, Congress and President Roosevelt made a critical judgment about the nation’s financial services industry. By passing the Federal Credit Union Act in 1934, they were seeking a new way for consumers to obtain financial services whereby the user’s needs were always foremost.
Since the first state charter 100 years ago, time and again the cooperative credit union system has fulfilled this Congressional intent, but never so successfully as in the past two years of the Great Recession.
When almost all other financial providers were stepping back, credit unions served their 91 million member-owners by setting new records in loan originations and loan modifications; and by expanding share in every market served: auto financing, credit cards, student loans, first and second mortgages, and small business lending.
This countercyclical activity was precisely the purpose Congress intended 75 years ago. Credit empowers individuals, small firms, communities, and even governmental organizations. With $271 billion in loans (a 7% increase over 2008) to 20 million member-borrowers, the credit union industry recorded its 64th year of loan increases since World War II.
This performance is described in the Annual Report enclosed. Credit unions, in the words of one business writer describing State Employees’ Credit Union (North Carolina), “could serve as a model for others.” This model is more than extending credit; it is a way for individuals to create “common wealth” to benefit fellow members, communities, not-for-profits and small business.
The credit union way is as old as the Mayflower Compact and as new as the Susan Komen Race for the Cure. Credit unions are grateful for the opportunity to build a more cooperative America and in doing so, point the way for other financial service providers in the decade ahead.
The Credit Union Movement
Cc: The Congress
The Department of the Treasury
We, the undersigned, are sending President Obama this Annual Report documenting the extraordinary performance of the credit union system during the financial turmoil of 2009, so that your administration may recognize our achievements in building a more cooperative America.
The The 2009 Annual Report on Credit Union Performance petition to President Obama was written by Callahan & Associates and is in the category Miscellaneous at GoPetition.