ST. HELEN’S, Ore. – St. Helens Community FCU hired a new CEO who immediately urged the board to terminate a merger agreement with nearby Wauna FCU, which would have created a $300 million credit union.
Brooke Van Vleet, who had been chief administrative officer at First Tech FCU, said her first official action as CEO of the $166 million credit union was to recommend an end to the recently announced letter of intent to explore a merger with Wauna FCU. “My focus needs to be on the day-to-day operations and getting up to speed quickly on current initiatives,” said Van Vleet, a 20-year veteran of the credit union movement.
Lea Chitwood, chairman of the St. Helen’s board, said the panel agreed. “While the Board still believes we should always explore strategic options that may benefit our members, we concur with Van Vleet’s assessment that the credit union’s energy currently needs to be focused on maximizing value to the membership through our current initiatives,” Chitwood said.
The credit union also announced that Randy Goshow has joined the credit union as senior vice president and chief financial officer. Goshow most recently served as vice president business systems at Clackamas FCU and has over twenty five years credit union experience in a variety of finance and IT leadership roles in Oregon credit unions.