Last Thursday, I attended a farewell gathering in Montgomery to honor outgoing Alabama Credit Union Administrator Sarah Moore.  Sara brought a level of professionalism to the agency, hiring and developing staff, and upgrading technology.  She was a strong advocate for the state-chartered credit union system.  We might not have always agreed on everything, but we considered each other partners, working side-by-side to pass legislation to strengthen the agency and the state-charter.  We were fortunate to have a leader like Sarah in the position for the time that we did, and she set the bar high for a replacement.

With the news of Sarah’s departure, we spoke to individuals that expressed an interest in the administrator position, as well as discussed with our Alabama member credit unions what attributes are most important in a new ACUA administrator. Through those conversations, we believe that there is one individual best suited to lead the agency and have written a letter to Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey recommending Lloyd Moore, assistant administrator of the ACUA, for the administrator position.

Lloyd has served state-chartered credit unions for more than 26 years and has unique knowledge of the Alabama credit union system. Additionally, he has expressed a clear vision for the future of the agency and has both the respect of the industry and agency staff, a great testament to the skills needed to succeed in this important role.

Our credit unions also have an opportunity to see a credit union savvy leader placed in a position of power in Florida’s Office of Financial Regulation. The OFR Commissioner position was first announced as open last summer, but a new appointment was delayed mostly because policymakers wanted to wait until after the November 2018 General Election to select a candidate.  With Gov. Ron DeSantis now in office and a new cabinet in place, the push is on to find a new commissioner with applications due Feb. 14.

With state-chartered credit unions’ assets continuing to grow, now outnumbering those of state-chartered banks, we must ensure that the state has a commissioner who understands the importance of credit unions and the need for continued regulatory relief and reform.

We now have the opportunity to position an industry friendly regulator in a crucial role for Florida, and the League wants to see the right candidate for this job. The League has been in contact with several interested applicants and continues to speak to both the governor’s office and the chief financial officer’s office on a regular basis. This is a heavy-hitting position with responsibility for regulatory oversight of state-chartered financial institutions, securities firms, finance companies, money services businesses, and debt collectors. The commissioner also oversees chartering, licensing, supervision, and examination of state-chartered credit unions.  We are committed to having credit unions have a voice in the process.

Please also be prepared to join us for our Alabama Advocacy Conference, March 19-20 in Montgomery, and the Florida Advocacy Conference, March 26-27 in Tallahassee so that we can continue to bring our message to lawmakers and their staff.