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Fryzel looks to CUs' future, past as tenure winds down
ALEXANDRIA, Va. (4/22/14)--As the National Credit Union Administration awaits Senate action on the nomination of J. Mark McWatters to replace Michael Fryzel on the agency board, Fryzel took the occasion of this month's The NCUA Report to reflect on the recent past and the near future of the credit union movement.

Fryzel's term ended in August, but he has agreed to serve until a replacement is confirmed by the Senate.

Fryzel, who writes a monthly column in the Report , this month urged credit unions "to accept the challenges that lie ahead."  He said they include interest rate risk, cybersecurity, competition and the continued avalanche of regulation.

Fryzel said that "how the industry's institutions meet and handle these challenges will determine who survives and can continue to serve their members' needs." He encouraged credit unions to "vigorously pursue and put in place the solutions that will enable you to overcome and successfully move forward to success in the future."

The path, he said, may be difficult at times, "but the rewards will be worth the hard work."

With a philosophy of people helping people, with slogans like "members first," and with a creed of "not for profit, but for service," the tradition of true cooperative financial services will live forever, Fryzel wrote.

The regulator also recounted some the major events that have shaped his tenure at the agency since joining the board as chairman in July 2008. Fryzel served as chairman until Aug. 24, 2009. Major experiences included:
  • Addressing failures in the corporate credit union system;
  • Forming the Office of Consumer Protection and the Office of National Examinations and Supervision;
  • Creating and putting into use a new examination manual to better ensure fair and consistent exams across all regions;
  • Helping the agency recover more than $1.75 billion from banks that created the financial crisis;
  • Drafting new corporate credit union rules;
  • Giving credit unions the authority to engage in derivatives; and
  • Seeing the increase in credit union membership, and the record earnings brought in by some credit unions.
Fryzel's term on the NCUA board officially ended Aug. 2. The Senate Banking Committee is expected to move forward with a vote on McWatters' nomination within the next couple of weeks.
 
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