State Employees’ Credit Union CEO Jim Hayes resigned to take the leadership job at State Department Federal Credit Union in Alexandria, Virginia.
The Raleigh-based institution, which is the second-largest credit union in the U.S., said company veteran Leigh Brady was named CEO. She is SECU’s first female CEO and has spent 35 years the institution. She has been chief operating officer since 2021.
“No one understands SECU better than Leigh Brady,” says Chris Ayers, chair of the board of directors, in a release. “She has been an integral part of the Credit Union for more than three decades and uniquely understands our mission and our members.”
Hayes joined SECU in mid-2021 after leading a credit union in the Washington, D.C. area. He implemented various policy changes at the institution, some of which have drawn harsh criticism from the two previous CEOs at SECU, Michael Lord and Jim Blaine.
Brady was among the finalists before SECU’s board selected Hayes to succeed Lord, who had held the post for five years. Hayes had been an industry regulator and an executive of a corporate credit union in San Diego before leading Andrews Federal Credit Union in Maryland.
Under Hayes leadership, SECU added credit scoring to boost loans from more affluent members; launched its first major ad campaign; emphasized its commitment to digital innovation and relaxed a dress code that had required male branch office staffers to wear ties. The credit union’s board had indicated its support for Hayes’ leadership in reports to employees
SECU has about $50 billion in assets and offices in each of the state’s 100 counties. It’s the largest U.S. credit union behind Navy Federal Credit Union.
Hayes’ new employer has assets of $2.8 billion and 90,000 members.