Washington, D.C. (March 2, 2023) – Lauren Whaley, president of the Carolinas Credit Union Foundation, was recognized with the 2023 Eugene H. Farley League Leadership Award by the American Association of Credit Union Leagues (AACUL) at a reception held in conjunction with the 2022 CUNA Governmental Affairs Conference (GAC).
The award honors a league executive who demonstrates visionary leadership at the state and national levels.
“The Carolinas Credit Union Foundation has truly transformed over the past seven years thanks to the strong support from the team at the Carolinas Credit Union League, the collaborative spirit of my colleagues at state credit unions foundations across the country, and the vision of our Foundation Board of Directors. I’m so proud to have been part of that progress,” Whaley shared. “It’s truly an honor to be recognized and join a list of remarkable leaders in our industry to receive the Farley League Leadership Award.”
Whaley joined the Foundation as president in 2015. Since then, the Foundation has distributed nearly $10 million in funding for disaster relief, hardship assistance, educational programs and grants, academic and needs-based scholarships, non-profit grant support, and more. By revamping the Foundation’s fund management services, Whaley has more than tripled the assets of the Foundation. Among several initiatives Whaley introduced to benefit Carolinas credit union system are professional development grants for small credit unions and a Technology and Capital Improvement Grant Program that helps small credit unions invest in technology, security, or infrastructure upgrades.
“Lauren has taken the concept of ‘foundation’ to heart, working to extend the Carolinas Credit Union Foundation as basis for credit union community support throughout North and South Carolina,” AACUL President Brad Miller notes. “She is a leader among her peers, embracing cooperation and opportunities to help others in anticipated and unexpected times of need.”
In April 2020, the Foundation activated its Disaster Relief Fund to support a COVID-19 Relief Program designed by Lauren, making relief funds available to employees of Carolinas-based credit unions who experienced significant financial hardship as a result of the pandemic.
“Lauren has transformed the organization from a fundraising arm supporting large-scale projects to a strategic philanthropic partner to the credit union system in the Carolinas,” Carolinas Credit Union League President and CEO Dan Schline adds. “Through her intentional and focused planning, the Foundation is positioned as a community foundation supporting the philanthropic needs of credit unions, business partners, and chapters in the Carolinas.”
On a national level, Lauren currently serves as the Chair of the State Credit Union Foundation Network of AACUL and is on the steering committee for the Credit Union Foundation Network Group that represents those who manage philanthropy for both state foundations and credit union foundations.
Photo caption: 2023 Farley Award Winner and Carolinas Credit Union Foundation President Lauren Whaley poses with (from L to R) AACUL Chair and Dakota Credit Union Association President Jeff Olson, fellow award winner Ohio Credit Union League President Paul Mercer and AACUL President Brad Miller.
The American Association of Credit Union Leagues (AACUL) is the national association for the state and regional credit union leagues/associations throughout the United States. AACUL’s mission is to cultivate the success of individual leagues as well as the collective League System by supporting league efforts to advocate, communicate, collaborate and influence policy on behalf of credit unions nationwide. We partner with the Credit Union National Association (CUNA) to foster the CUNA-League System relationship and the prosperity of the credit union movement.
The Carolinas Credit Union Foundation has served as a partner to credit unions and their community giving efforts for more than thirty years. Its mission is to empower and inspire credit unions in the Carolinas to enrich the communities they serve.
The Carolinas Credit Union League is the not-for-profit association of credit unions throughout North and South Carolina. Established in 2014 with a commitment to the cooperative spirit, the Carolinas Credit Union League is credit unions’ primary advocate and much more, promoting their success through risk and compliance resources, professional development, product and service enhancements, and back-office support.