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First Choice Financial Federal Credit Union hosts 48th annual meeting

Frank Carangelo and Marsha Smith, retired board members of First Choice Financial Federal Credit Union were honored at the Credit UnionÕs recent annual meeting. (Photo submitted)

First Choice Financial Federal Credit Union recently hosted its 48th Annual Meeting at the Main Office located at 355 Hales Mills Road, Gloversville.

Vince LaPorta, Chairman of the Board, conducted the business meeting extending a warm welcome to the membership in attendance and spoke briefly about how the current COVID-19 pandemic hampered plans for the annual dinner meeting scheduled in March.

Due to the restrictions placed on large gatherings, a smaller setting with no food was the backdrop for the meeting. He emphasized that the Credit Union was resilient and boasted another successful year despite the challenges faced. LaPorta thanked the loyal members, committed management ieam, hard-working staff and the dedicated Board of Directors for the continued success of the Credit Union.

Gail Ryan, Supervisory Committee Chairman, reported that the Supervisory Committee oversees the general operation of the Credit Union to ensure its propriety. In addition to the Supervisory Committee review, an outside audit was performed by FJP & Associates, Inc and an examination by the National Credit Union Association (NCUA) was conducted.

The audit and examination found the Credit Union books to be in balance; the procedures and operations in compliance with federal credit union regulations. She reiterated that new committee members are welcome. She can be contacted at the Credit Union if anyone is interested.

Brenda Coon, President/CEO stated we are living through a truly notable time, and the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has dealt many challenges. Every business across the world has had to figure out how to keep operating while at a distance.

For FCFFCU, it’s been a daunting balance to remain accessible while keeping employees and members safe. Technology has played a critical role, and it will only grow in influence as we fight COVID-19 and adapt to new environments in the future.

Management worked diligently to bring members enhanced digital banking and a new and enhanced website. The technology enhancements enable the Credit Union to continually evolve and offer products, services and delivery channels making it easier and more convenient for members to access and manage their accounts. First Choice Financial Federal Credit Union has remained stable and strong. The financial condition of the Credit Union reflects a robust, sustainable and efficient financial institution

Stephen Tomlinson, Board Member, read heartfelt words of appreciation and presented retiring board members,

Marsha Smith and Frank Carangelo with service awards, extending many thanks to each for their stewardship of 40+ years respectively to the Credit Union. Smith spoke of her many years of service and shared with the audience the reason for her longevity was because of the fellow board members, the employees and the members. The years went by and before she knew it, 40+ years had passed. Smith feels that it is time to step down and let the younger members take over. She remains a member of the Supervisory Committee. Carangelo enjoyed his time on the Board. He enjoyed working with the other board members, the staff and interacting with the members. He spoke about how they used to personally pick up deposits and deliver loan proceeds to member homes, while working without office space.

Carangelo enjoyed watching the changes throughout the years and wished that the traditional annual dinner meeting had been possible so he could have personally thanked more members from the earlier days, when the Credit Union first started, for their trust they placed in the Board at that time. He has enjoyed watching the Credit Union evolve.

LaPorta presented employee service awards to Deb Shepard, VP Marketing/Business Development, 25 years; Jacki Hill, Mortgage Loan Officer, 20 years; and Matt Hallenbeck, Member Service Rep/Marketing Dept. Asst, 5 years.

The Nomination Committee, chaired by Melody Burton, tendered and the membership voted into office the following people to serve a three-year term to the Board of Directors: Vincent LaPorta, Emily Brown, Ken Adamczyk, Stephen Tomlinson, Gail Ryan and as ex-officio, Brenda Coon.

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