NEW YORK, N.Y. (3/5/12)--Longtime CEO of the National Federation of Community Development Credit Unions Cliff Rosenthal announced late Friday that after 32 years with the federation he will leave May 4 to take a job with the federal government May 7.
Although not naming his new post, Rosenthal said the government position will allow him to "pursue the mission that has guided me throughout my career: providing financial access and a route to economic self-sufficiency for low-income people."
Upon hearing the announcement, Credit Union National Association President/CEO Bill Cheney called Rosenthal the "the colossus of community development credit unions."
"For more than 30 years, he has devoted his professional life to the growth of these institutions, and has earned accolades for both the National Federation and the credit unions themselves," Cheney said, adding, "Although we will miss his dedication, enthusiasm, and intellect, we wish him success in this next chapter of his career, and look forward to working with him."
Rosenthal said the federation has come a long way since the 1980s, when its very future was in question. Now, he said, the federation is proud to count more than 200 credit unions in its membership, with total assets of some $13 billion and membership of 1.7 million.
"I can tell you that reaching these heights was beyond our wildest dreams back in the 1980s," he added.
Rosenthal said leaving the federation is personally difficult, but added the organization is "strong, stable, and sustainable."
"If I may borrow a phrase from the Peace Corps, this is the toughest job I've ever loved," he said.