DENVER — John P. Sheehy, a top lobbyist for the Colorado Credit Union League for 30 years, died Feb. 18, according to the Mountain West Credit Union Association, which succeeded the Colorado league and represents Colorado, Wyoming and Arizona.

Sheehy, who retired in 2004, initially joined the Colorado league in May 1973 as an auditor and consultant. Over the decades he also served as its executive vice president overseeing governmental affairs, public relations, member services and operations.

"John Sheehy represented the best of the credit union movement," said Carroll Beach, former president and CEO of the Colorado Credit Union League, in a statement. "He was an excellent futuristic strategist and an exceptional legislative and regulatory advocate. The progressive... Colorado credit union statute is due to his exceptional efforts."

Mountain West also said that Sheehy served as an assistant treasurer of the Colorado Corporate Federal Credit Union during that organization's first two years.

"Over the years John conducted numerous seminars and planning sessions for credit unions in Colorado and other states, assisting them in determining strategic direction," the association added.

"John truly made a lasting impact on the credit union movement through his diligent work over the years to shape the laws for credit unions," said Scott Earl, president of the Association. "He had a true credit union heart and as he met with lawmakers they could see he believed in what he was doing."

In addition, Sheehy served as a director of Consumer Credit Counseling Service of Denver for many years. He was appointed by three Colorado governors — Richard Lamm, Roy Romer and Bill Owens — to serve on the Council of Advisors on Consumer Credit.

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