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A Crasher’s Story: Discovering the “Why” of Credit Unions

Dr. Shallon Poulson credits Crashing CUNA’s GAC with helping her better understand the purpose-driven mission of credit unions. She joined Del-One FCU as Director of Compliance a year ago, after having worked at bigger banking institutions. Dr. Poulson shared her Crasher experience with us, and how the credit union “why” has inspired her to get more involved in the industry:

Young professional near U.S. Capitol

What surprised you about the experience?
Crashing the GAC was an amazing experience! One of the aspects that I found to be surprising was the comradery, positive interactions, willingness to help, and the encouragement to succeed among various credit unions (CUs) and vendors/ CU partners. My former background and work experience is with bigger banking institutions. To see the amount of dedication and genuine motivation to serve the members, communities, and help others/ teammates succeed was absolutely an amazing experience and inspirational moment!

What was your most memorable moment/activity/or speaker who really resonated with you?
Listening to all the speakers at the GAC, there was quite a bit of knowledge and wisdom to be gained. Overall, all the speakers were amazing, but the speakers who resonated for me the most were Dr. Condoleezza Rice and Jim Nussle.

How has the crasher experience impacted you professionally? Personally?
Crashing the GAC was one of the best and most memorable experiences so far within my short time of being within the CU industry. To get a better understanding of why CUs are so important and the work they do to serve and help not just the members but the communities, has really inspired me to do more both personally and professionally. The GAC has truly inspired and motivated me to want to do more to grow and build upon a long-term career within the CU industry, as well as get more involved and do more to serve my community.

What were your key takeaways?
My key takeaways from Crashing the GAC would definitely be the knowledge gained and better understanding of why CUs were established in the first place. Along with, all the difference CUs make in the lives of individuals, as well as communities as a whole. The personal stories shared were truly inspiring, heartfelt, and motivating.

Would you encourage other credit union professionals to apply for the program?
Yes, I most certainly would! If someone is new to the CU world or in need of finding their “why am I here,” the GAC will help in answering those questions. Along with creating passion and inspiration in committing to the CU movement!

The concept of “Crashing” was developed by The Cooperative Trust to encourage the participation of young professionals at the CUNA Governmental Affairs Conference. After many successful years of “Crash the GAC” the YPN is thrilled to bring the idea to CONNECT 2023, by announcing its new program, Rock the Annual Convention.  

For more information, visit our Young Professional’s page and see how you can: 
Rock the Annual Convention 2023!

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