CTC “Celebrating AACUC Hall of Fame Honorees"
CTC “Celebrating AACUC Hall of Fame Honorees"
**RECORDING COMING SOON**
Thank you for joining us for our February CTC Friday Conversation: "Celebrating AACUC Hall of Fame Honorees." We proudly celebrated AACUC's 2024 African American Hall of Fame honorees.
Our esteemed panelists were:
- John Bratsakis, President/CEO, MD | DC Credit Union Association
- Maurice Dawkins, President/CEO, American Spirit Federal Credit Union
- Karen Madry, President/CEO, Afena Federal Credit Union
- Anthony Taylor, Board Member, Ascend Federal Credit Union
- Robert 'Bob' Trunzo, Retired President, TruStage
Whitney Anderson, Board Chair of the African-American Credit Union Coalition moderated the conversation.
Keep reading to learn more about our panelists.
President and Chief Executive Officer
MD | DC Credit Union Association
John Bratsakis has been President and Chief Executive Officer of MD|DC Credit Union Association since 2011. His 35-year career in the credit union movement includes extensive experience in operations and advocacy. He served as Senior Vice President of Baxter Credit Union in Vernon Hills, Illinois; CEO of Community Trust Credit Union in Gurnee, Illinois; and held management positions with United Federal Credit Union in Michigan and Teachers Credit Union in Indiana. John is currently the Chair of CU4Kids, Credit Union Miracle Day and the Credit Union Cherry Blossom Ten Mile Run. He also serves on the American Association of Credit Union Leagues (AACUL) Executive Committee as Secretary/Treasurer and as Board Member for CU Risk Intelligence, League InfoSight, and Plexcity a back-office company for associations.
American Spirit Federal Credit Union
Maurice Dawkins has served as CEO of American Spirit Federal Credit Union since 2003. Under his leadership, American Spirit has grown to $78 million in assets, expanded into under-served areas of Delaware, been recognized as one of the top U.S. credit unions and received a Five-Star Bauer Financial rating for its financial strength. With over 30 years of operational leadership in the financial industry, he has built diverse teams to support business growth while leading change to drive peak organizational performance. He holds a B.S. in Accounting and a minor in Business Management from Thomas College. He serves as AACUC Eastern Regional Chapter president, among other boards.
Afena Federal Credit Union
Karen Madry is the President/CEO of Afena Federal Credit Union and the first African American Chairwoman of the Indiana Credit Union League. Her national and international influence includes chairing CUNA's Small Credit Union Committee, earning recognition from the World Council of Credit Unions for the League’s hurricane relief efforts in Domnica and receiving the League’s Global Good Award for her involvement in international projects. A popular speaker and often featured in trade publications, she has transformed the Afena CU by emphasizing a holistic approach and building strong community relationships. Under her leadership, it has achieved remarkable growth, obtained CDFI status and expanded the field of membership.
Ascend Federal Credit Union
Anthony Taylor is the first African American appointed to Ascend Federal Credit Union’s Board Development Committee. He has served the Board and Supervisory Committee over 19 years. As Chairman, the credit union experienced remarkable asset and member growth, making it the largest credit union in middle Tennessee and one of the largest in the state. He has been instrumental in ensuring Ascend has a high-performing Board that serves the best interests of its members by prioritizing board governance efforts and ensuring the Board reflects the diversity of the membership. He holds a B.S. from Middle Tennessee State University and a J.D. from the Nashville School of Law.
Robert 'Bob' Trunzo
Robert N. Trunzo is the retired President/CEO of TruStage. He is known for his focus on shaping a more inclusive company and contributing to a more equitable industry and community. Examples of his contributions include forming TruStage Ventures™ Discovery Fund benefitting fintech companies led by BIPOC, LGBTA+ and woman founders and pledging resources and financial support to ACCOSCA for establishing a lending education program in Africa. Mr. Trunzo is a founding member of CU DEI Collective and founding investor in the FinHealth fund. By partnering with Inclusiv, he helped increase the number of CDFIs and access to $12 billion in new funding for CDFIs and MDIs.
African-American Credit Union Coalition
Whitney Anderson serves in a critical stewardship role for the AACUC Future Fund and the AACUC Impact portfolio. In addition to providing an operating reserve for future sustainability, the Future Fund will support, amplify and increase the impact of programs focused on:
▪ Internships and leadership development — Building a succession pipeline for the credit union system; securing the legacy of mentorship and professional development we have created.
▪ Small credit union sustainability — Ensuring the viability and vibrancy of the credit unions that are at greatest risk of mergers, acquisition and member attrition.
▪ Wealth building and community impact programs — Supporting credit unions to establish and sustain initiatives that improve financial access, inclusion and well-being for communities of color
Anderson previously served as the CEO of Elements Financial, a diversified federal credit union with assets of more than $2.4 billion and 110,000+ members in all 50 states and 50 foreign countries. She was selected from a large candidate pool to ensure a highly skilled and effective leader was found to take Elements forward. Under her leadership assets have grown by 20%, within one year.
Anderson previously served as Chief Community Development Officer at Michigan State University Federal Credit Union (MSUFCU), $6.8 billion in assets. There she initiated many critical programs, including creating and being named as the President of the Desk Drawer Fund, MSUFCU’s philanthropic foundation, and President of Ever Green 3C, a financial literacy platform. Her years of leading a broad range of teams, projects, and responsibilities provide a solid foundation from which to grow and lead.
April Clobes, CEO MSUFCU states, "Whitney is a dynamic, innovative leader who is committed to her team, organizational results, the credit union industry, and our members and their communities."
Anderson has had significant community involvement on boards such as the African American Credit Union Coalition (AACUC) National Board, MLK Commission of Mid-Michigan, and United Way.
An industry leader, she was recently named Board Chair of the African-American Credit Union Coalition (AACUC) and is the first Black woman elected to the Board of Directors for the National Association of Federal Credit Unions (NAFCU).
As a visionary leader with a strong background in retail sales and new business development, Anderson consistently drives unprecedented growth and profitability. She has a deep understanding of banking regulatory requirements, compliance, financial products and services, consumer marketing trends, information management and emerging technologies. Anderson is known for building high-performing teams and fostering an inclusive environment to achieve ambitious goals. She is a Michigan native, MSU graduate, and an excellent communicator with a service philosophy.
Whitney loves spending time with her family, cooking, reading, and being in nature.