Report of the Chair and CEO
The numbers tell us 2019 was a solid year. An increase of just over $18 million in business loans and nearly $6 million in personal loans led to an overall increase in our portfolio. Checking, Savings, IRAs and Certificates all showed growth, adding approximately $30 million to our deposit shares, a boost of nearly 5%. We closed out 2019 with over $728 million in assets, and just under 61,000 members. Once again, the numbers reveal a credit union in robust shape - ready to make the most of opportunities that come our way, as well as take on any challenges.
We are a credit union committed to our members, to our team, to growth and to making a positive impact in the Southern California and Southern Nevada communities we serve. We believe we have an obligation to do the right thing, which is, invariably, the smart thing. We reach out to underserved communities. We educate, donate, contribute and volunteer.
In 2019, 37 SCE FCU team members completed a variety of financial coaching workshops. Our team members themselves presented 31 workshops attended by 1,151 participants. This illustrates the fact that real leadership does not create followers; it creates new leaders.
The Center for Financial Empowerment is the nonprofit we founded in 2005. They are primarily focused on providing financial education to high school students who otherwise might never learn even the basics. In 2019 the CFE put on 21 Mad City Money financial simulation events and 146 classes, resulting in thousands more money smart people in the world.
Another highlight of 2019 took place in September when SCE FCU played proud host for a field trip to our Boyle Heights branch as part of the Inclusiv Conference. Their mission is to help low- and moderate-income people and communities achieve financial independence through credit unions. At the branch, we treated guests to local food and a folkloric dance performance. They heard from community-based organizations we work with to learn more about our mission-driven lending, the financial education we offer adults and the work of the CFE. Their President and CEO, Cathie Mahon, called SCE FCU a “force and a pioneer within the community development, credit union movement.”
One of the issues we are always addressing is credit. Did you know that nearly 70 million people in the U.S. have bad or poor credit? Our Credit Builder Loan saw a significant increase in 2019 as more people chose to work with us to rebuild their financial reputations. The loan is designed to help people with no credit, too. The loan proceeds go into a savings account and as the borrower makes payments, the funds are made available. In 2019 we helped put hundreds of people back on the road to financial stability and success with this loan.
2019 was the 67th annual affirmation of our commitment to people, places and progress. SCE FCU is about a child’s first savings account, and a grandparent’s IRA. Members look to us for that low interest auto loan, and higher interest certificate. We make the dream of home ownership come true, and we provide access to equity. We are also about the financial seminars that help adults and teens, volunteering and contributing to important community causes and being the thoughtful neighbor you live near.
At SCE FCU we believe credit unions become great institutions not only because of their financial power but because of their ability and willingness to empower others.