GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.-CU*Answers has unveiled the latest round of winners in its fifth annual video contest.

The challenge, as in past years, is for credit union professionals to come up with a concept for commercial that highlights a particular theme chosen by the CUSO.

This year's theme was "Why I Work For A Credit Union," and one winning concept came from Patty Sarne of San Antonio Citizens FCU. That ad features a credit union employee explaining the pride that comes from helping members afford their first home, buy a car, send their kids to college and more, all because of help from their credit union and the role it plays in the community.

Melinda Haehnel, VP of marketing & public relations at CU*Answers, noted that this year's theme compared to previous years' was "a little bit more about instilling pride and passion for working at a credit union."

"Why I Work At A Credit Union" was named "Best Video Idea," while "Best 30-Second Spot" went to "We're Here," from Brandt Becker at Community West CU in Grand Rapids. That ad spotlights the long-term safety and soundness of CUs and the variety of services they provide to members.

Both videos were produced with help from Grand Rapids, Mich.-based Fulview Productions. The videos, along with other CU*Answers videos from previous years, are available to CUs and leagues. All videos are fully customizable with new voiceovers and logos to reflect credit union or league branding.

Haehnel noted that the Arkansas CU league has picked up a previous winner, a spot titled "Everywhere," and adopted it as its theme for the year, including billboards, TV, radio and more.

CU*Answers also named two videos as the winners of "Best Jingle" and "Best Completed Video," though those videos reflect their specific CUs and are not customizable.

About 40 ideas were submitted for the four different categories, a slight rise from previous years. In 2011, about 30 people entered the competition.

"Our numbers are always in that range," said Haehenl. "We don't' have a huge bump, but every year it bumps up two or three entries. I don't know if it's because we're growing or other clients want to get a chance to see their ideas turn into a fully produced commercial." She added that CU*Answers sees lots of repeat participants each year.

The CUSO plans to begin discussing its 2013 video contest sometime in October.

To view this year's winners, visit

For more, visit

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