CHARLOTTE, N.C. (9/7/12)--Even as the Democratic National Convention (DNC) prepared Thursday for its climatic event--when President Barack Obama took the stage last night to accept the party's nomination for president--credit unions stayed involved in convention activities to the end.
House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi (Calif.) poses with CUNA President/CEO Bill Cheney, left, CUNA Vice President of Political Affairs Trey Hawkins, center, and CUNA Senior Vice President of Legislative Affairs Ryan Donovan, right. (CUNA Photo)
Credit Union National Association (CUNA) senior officials, including President/CEO Bill Cheney, continued to meet with high-level Democrats and discuss credit union issues. CUNA interactions included those with House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi of California, Sen. Mark Udall of Colorado, and Rep. James Clyburn of South Carolina, who is the third-ranking Democrat in the House and who participated in the ribbon cutting ceremony Wednesday of the credit union project that renovated a rooftop playground for young patients at Levine Children's Hospital.
CUNA and the leagues also interacted with, to name but a few, New York's Rep. Carolyn Maloney, of the Joint Economic Committee, Rep. Ed Perlmutter of Colorado, and Rep. Suzanne Bonomici of Oregon, who signed on to CUNA-backed legislation to increase the credit union member business lending cap as her first bill co-sponsorship when elected.
CUNA and the state leagues also met with a host of state legislators during the four-day convention.
Credit union participation in the national political conventions started in 1988.
"Our participation," says CUNA Vice President of Political Affairs Trey Hawkins, "is a dynamic way of keeping credit unions and the credit union philosophy of 'people helping people' in the national spotlight.
"The conventions are an opportunity to talk to and communicate with all of the policy and media and political elites in one place. That's an opportunity we want to take on behalf of credit unions."
Among the highlights of credit union involvement at the DNC, CUNA, the North Carolina Credit Union League, the South Carolina Credit Union League and other credit union representatives continued a tradition started in 2000 of leaving behind a charitable project for the host city when they participate in national political conventions.
With Clyburn participating, credit unions unveiled their community project at Levine Children's Hospital Wednesday. (Use resource link to read more.)
CUNA, the state credit union leagues, CUNA Mutual Group, and credit unions also honored all delegates this week, when hundreds of them, along with more than a dozen federal and state lawmakers, attended an event hosted at the Aria Tuscan Grill Restaurant.
CUNA has also been a sponsor of the National Journal's
Convention Daily Briefings, which feature party newsmakers. Similar activities were held at last week's Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla.