ALBANY, N.Y. (4/26/12)--The Credit Union Association of New York's 2012 State Governmental Affairs Conference (GAC) kicked off Wednesday, with nearly 100 credit union advocates gathering in downtown Albany for legislator meetings, peer discussions and updates.
Leaders from state-chartered credit unions gathered for a roundtable discussion Wednesday to exchange ideas and address topics most relevant to state-chartered credit unions. All attendees then heard compliance and legal updates from Michael Lanotte, the association's senior vice president and general counsel, and Michael Carter, the association's compliance director.
"I participate in State GAC because it is important to connect with our legislators, both at home and at their Albany offices, and ensure our credit union voice is heard," said Pamela Heald, president/CEO of Reliant Community FCU in Sodus. "I also value the opportunity to network with other credit union professionals and, at the same time, be educated and updated by the association on key legislative issues."
The association offered a Lobbying 101 workshop for new advocates or those looking for a refresher, followed by a legislative briefing to prepare all attendees for their legislator visits tomorrow.
"I am looking forward to gaining more knowledge about what issues are facing the credit union movement, as well as having the opportunity to meet with legislators," said attendee Aimee Johnson, vice president of lending at Oswego (N.Y.) County FCU and member of the Association's Young Professionals Commission (YPC). Johnson is one of several young professionals to attend this year's conference.
"This is my first time attending State GAC, so I'm looking forward to seeing Albany at work and meeting with my local elected officials on Thursday," Corning (N.Y.) FCU employee and fellow YPC member Stephanie Carl noted. "I feel it's especially important for young professionals to participate in these advocacy efforts so that lawmakers at all levels can see our involvement and passion for the credit union movement."
The group will visit the offices of their New York state legislators, where they will build support for the state legilsative agenda and share stories of the credit union difference in New York.