CEO, Truliant Federal Credit Union
Education: Bachelor’s degree from University of California, Los Angeles; master’s degree from Thunderbird School of Global Management, Glendale, Ariz.
Career: Schaefer has been CEO of Winston-Salem-based Truliant since 1995. He was president and CEO of the FDIC Employees Federal Credit Union (now The Partnership FCU) from 1986-94.
2015 compensation: not provided
Formed in 1952 to serve Western Electric Co. employees in Winston-Salem, Greensboro and Burlington, Truliant now has about $2 billion in assets and about 195,000 members. Historically focused on the Triad region, the credit union is in the midst of an $11 million expansion in the Charlotte region that will give it a total of 14 branches in the metro area.
How is the Charlotte expansion going? Where else are you expanding?
From January 2015 through April, we have had 9,000 members join in the Charlotte area. The Charlotte locations presently account for about 30% of our total branch consumer lending and is on the rise. Our current expansion plans are still centered on Charlotte. We have opened seven of the 10 new branches planned.
What metrics show how the expansion is going?
While these areas are performing well with over $90 million in loan and deposit growth, the true measure of success for Truliant lies in our ability to engage our members in order to improve their lives. For example, last month we met with over 400 families within the Charlotte region and offered them advice and counsel on their credit. We talk about how they can leverage their credit to free up cash flow, restructure debt to help them meet long-term financial goals, or how to improve their credit.
What are keys to success for credit unions over the next five years?
We have to remain at the center of consumers’ lives as we help them measure financial wellness and implement plans to reach their life goals. We must continue to provide state-of-the-art mobile and online services that are easy to access while protecting consumer privacy and preventing attempted fraud.
Is your credit union growing faster than industry averageS in deposits and retained earnings?
Our net worth grew 5.26% in 2015 as compared to 8.1% average for credit unions nationally, which is slightly lower because of our expansion expenses. We are growing on par with the credit union industry in deposits. From 2014 to 2015, our deposits were up 10.8%, while total credit union industry deposits averaged 8%. Growth in deposit balances for greater Charlotte were up 24% for the same period.