Candidate applications are now available for the Wauna Credit Union volunteer Board of Directors. Learn more and apply today. Retrieve an application at your local branch, by mail, or by visiting waunafcu.org/about/annual-elections.shtml.
To be considered by the Board Nomination Committee, submit completed applications by close of business on Friday, November 8, 2019. Applications may be delivered in person to any branch or by mail: Attn. Governance Committee, PO Box 67, Clatskanie, OR 97016. Our 53rd Annual Meeting will be held on Tuesday, March 17th, 2020 at 6: 30 pm at the Erlene Darby Learning Center, located at 49249 HWY 30, Westport, OR.
Contact the Board Governance Committee at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have questions.
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October 17th Local Service Global Reach Refer a friend in October and you’ll each receive $50 Visit waunafcu.org or any branch for complete Refer a friend qualification details.
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In order to better optimize member service, we have decided to end Saturday hours at our St. Helens and Warrenton branches and instead extend Saturday drive-up video teller hours from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm, effective October 5th.
Drive-up video tellers are available 9: 00 am – 3: 00 pm at this very branch!
Members may also use U-Banking internet banking or mobile app, or call the 24/7 shared branching call center at 888-837-6500.
Our 24/7 lending line is available at 800-773-3236.
Our Safeway branch located at 3250 Leif Erickson Drive in Astoria remains open 11:00 am – 3:00 pm
It’s back to school time…so how do you teach your kids dollars and sense?
Are your children prepared to manage money and save for the future? Do you take the time to teach them about the value of a dollar and the difference between needs and wants?
According to the Council for Economic Education, despite the recognition that financial literacy is critical to succeed in modern society, study after study show that many Americans continue to lack basic understanding of financial concepts, often resulting in dire consequences. Yet there is hope for improvement if we work to make financial education a priority in our schools.
A recent article in Parents Magazine states that “5- and 6-year-olds are starting to develop the cognitive skills necessary to understand basic monetary concepts, such as identifying coins, figuring out how to count change, and matching small amounts of money to items they want to buy.” How do we start teaching our young ones about money?
Meet one father of four and a financial planner with CUNA Mutual Group, Phillip Hansen, who says the earlier you start educating your children, the better. He has some great advice for teaching young kids the value of physical money, setting goals, earning enough to reach goals, as well as the concept of opportunity costs. An ‘opportunity cost,’ for example, is if you spend time and money going to a movie, you cannot spend that time at home reading a book, and you can’t spend the money on something else.
“One of the first things I’ve taught my 5-year-old twins is that money is an actual, physical thing that they can earn and save and choose how they want to spend,” says Hansen. “It’s confusing for kids to see us plop down a plastic credit or debit card, as it creates a false sense that money isn’t real and if I want something, I just pull out the piece of plastic. So, we teach our kids that they can do chores around the house to earn money and then save it for items they are passionate about.”
Talking to kids about the physical concept of money and handing money directly to the cashier when buying something
Allowing them the opportunity to do small, age-appropriate chores around the house to earn money
Giving them a glass jar to save money and watch the savings grow
Helping them set goals for their money, like saving for a special new toy
Understanding the concept of opportunity costs, where they understand you may have to choose between things like a new toy or going to the movies
“Learning opportunity costs is one of the most important life concepts; opportunity costs are in everything in life—if I buy these really cool shoes, then I cannot have that new video game; or if I choose this college degree over that degree, will it bring me as much enjoyment?” says Hansen. “Teaching the value of money, goal setting, and helping kids understand what’s important to them is really Financial Literacy and Education for Children How to teach your kids dollars and sense to life in general. It’s the first step to helping them succeed and make informed decisions.” So, what else can parents do to teach kids about the value of money and making choices?
We’ve made a list:
Discuss what money is and how it works
Engage in family discussions about how you want to spend the money, where to vacation, and what to give up to get there
Look for teachable moments
Give an allowance or let them earn money
Start a savings account at a credit union
Set a savings goal
Teach them to budget—how do I make it until my next allowance?
Visit a credit union with your child
Let them struggle a bit
Be a good example
“My kids are still very young but I’ve already started helping my 5-year-olds understand the value of an hour of work—they cannot really understand the concept of a dollar, but if we talk about how many hours of chores it would take to buy a certain toy, they get it,” says Hansen. “I help my clients understand this notion as well—and whether they can really afford to buy that new house or if they should hunker down for a few more years and save up for the dream home with a little more planning.”
Hansen also says he helps a lot of parents understand that they don’t need to pay for everything for their kids—it’s so important to teach them responsibility and discipline around money and having a little ‘skin in the game.’ What is the difference between your wants and your needs? He says without a good, solid grasp of the value of money and its power, kids have a sense of entitlement that could become the root cause of struggle and brutal reality checks when they hit the real world.
“It simply is never too early to prepare your children to understand money, how it works, and all of the opportunity costs associated with making decisions and life choices,” says Hansen. “Those lessons provide the foundation for a happy and fulfilled life.”
Wauna Credit Union’s mission is to provide opportunities for
members to build their financial well-being. Usually that means helping you
find opportunities to better your financial situation, whether that’s helping
you find a way to grow your savings, or helping you get a lower-rate loan to make
the thing you need affordable. Sometimes though that means helping make sure
you don’t lost money. That’s why this information about preventing check,
Fraud and advanced
payment fraud from the FBI really stood out to us.
Is the check from an
item you sold on the internet, such as a car, boat, jewelry, etc?
Is the amount of the
check more than the item’s selling price?
Did you receive the check
via an overnight delivery service?
Is the check connected
to communicating with someone by email?
Is the check drawn
on a business or individual account that is different from the person buying
your item or product?
Have you been
informed that you were the winner of a lottery, such as Canadian, Australian, El
Gordo, or El Mundo, that you did not enter?
Have you been instructed to either “wire”
“send” or “ship” money, as soon as possible, to a large U.S.
City or to another country, such as Canada, England, or Nigeria?
Have you been asked
to pay money to receive a deposit from another country such as Canada, England,
Are you receiving pay
or a commission for facilitating money transfers through your account?
Did you respond to
an email requesting you to confirm, update, or provide your account information?
Wauna Credit Union has been serving members of the towns and cities surrounding the Columbia River for 52 years. We’re continuing to grow (if you want to join us check out our careers page). August is Happiness Happens Month, which is perfect since those celebrating anniversaries in August bring happiness everywhere they go.
Megan Gillespie – 12 years
What is your current position? I am currently one of two Card Specialists for Wauna Credit Union. Our job is to make sure all things card related work for our members with the least amount of friction possible. This allows them to use their accounts to the fullest. I started out 12 years ago as a part-time MSR. Since then I’ve dabbled in projects, call center, lending admin & operational functions, and now the world of payments and plastics. As more-and more transactions shift to cards and card-not-present, think online purchases, mobile wallets like ApplePay, etc. there is plenty to learn and ample opportunity to explore new services, products, and technology to improve the member experience with WCU.
What is something that working at WCU has taught you? Working at Wauna has taught me the importance of teamwork. In order to ensure the best care for our members it takes everyone from IT working hard to keep systems and equipment running, to Virtual Branch fielding calls & inquires, to Lending for processing and approving loans (including credit cards), to Operations and Compliance to making sure we follow all regs and processes. Excellent member service does not occur in a vacuum nor is it the result of one person’s sole effort. It takes everybody working together.
If you could choose one new hobby what would it be? I would love to learn to crochet and/or work more on my photography and other crafts.
Mike Chapman – 9 years
What is your current position? I’m the Predictive Data Analyst at the credit union. My role is to collect, analyze, and interpret a variety of member & consumer data, which is then used to help us determine the products and services that will best meet the future needs of our members. I assist with helping Credit Union leaders understand what type of financial services our members need before they even know they need them!
What is something that working at WCU has taught you? While all of us at Wauna Credit Union work at a very fast pace, it’s also just as important for us to remember to slow down to make sure we clearly hear and understand the needs of our member-owners.
If you could choose one new hobby what would it be? While I strive each day to make good environmental-friendly decisions, I would enjoy being able to have more time to give to the worthy organizations which do such great work to improve our environment.
Jenn Kenney – 7 years
What is your current position? My current position is Technical Operations Systems Manager. This is a complicated way of saying I am the bridge between the Operations side of the credit union and the IT side. This is a new position for me and I am hoping to learn so much about the technical side that I can be the bridge between IT and many other departments within Wauna. WCU is always working to bring the best technological advancements to our members, and I get to be part of it.
What is something that working at WCU has taught you? Working at WCU has taught me that none of us would be successful alone. It takes all of us as a team to serve our members and make things happen. As part of working on this team, I have also learned patience. Patience for other’s time and capacity and that having patience helps to get things done.
If you could choose one new hobby what would it be? More travel, but more travel specifically with the intent to see shows or concerts or other amazing things where ever I might travel to. I have begun this hobby with an upcoming trip to New York to see Hamilton on Broadway.
Anna Bennett – 4 years What is your current position? I am currently the HR Assistant for Wauna, I handle payroll and help our employees understand their benefits. I started out as a teller at Wauna in 2015 so my job has changed a lot over the years, but at the core I still get to help people and this is one of the things I love most about working here.
What is something that working at WCU has taught you? Working at Wauna has really helped me find my passion and develop my career plan. I have learned that there are always opportunities to grow yourself if you are willing to put in the work and that hard work and loyalty will always be rewarded.
If you could choose one new hobby what would it be? This is hard! I think if I could only choose one thing it would be to travel. I love the idea of getting to experience different cultures.
Kylee Lunsford – 2 years
What is your current position? My current position is Member Service Manager of the Safeway Branch. My job is to make sure that our members have the tools and knowledge to maintain financial independence and growth. I also work on community outreach and fiscal education.
What is something that working at WCU has taught you? My job at Wauna has taught me about the strength that Credit Unions can lend to their communities when they are impassioned about. Until I began working here I had no idea about all that we do behind the scenes to uplift our communities through volunteer work, outreach and education.
If you could choose one new hobby what would it be? If I could pick a new hobby to take on at this point in my life it would be rock climbing. The whole fear of heights thing is just a technicality!
Chris Martin – 2 years
What is your current position? I’m the maintenance supervisor. We work with all over the footprint to ensure the branches are running smoothly and have everything they need. Sometimes that means fixing something that is broken. Sometimes it means noticing a big change that could be made to improve branch operations. Maintenance also plays a huge part in building projects like the new branch that is going to be opening up in Forest Grove. My job is to give everyone peace of mind, knowing that any needs they have we will be there to assist them. Also of course it means bringing a little humor and joy to the branches. We like knowing that we have done everything above and beyond what is expected of us. We want people to know they can call on us anytime, regardless how small the request is.
What is something that working at WCU has taught you? This place is very family orientated. Also bringing your co workers breakfast generally brings a smile to their face. It’s that small things that matter.
If you could choose one new hobby what would it be? Spend more time fishing, and hunting with family and friends.
Nichole Soares – 1 year
What is your current position? I am a Virtual Consultant in the Virtual Branch, and I am also a loan officer. I assist members with virtually (hehe) every type of need/service within the credit union. From accounts to loans; I perform transactions, assist with all facets of online banking, help members with the majority of their financial questions. At times am an ear for them when dealing with tough times in their personal lives.
I am now a loan officer so I also assist members in finding the product or service that fits best in how they are trying to structure their finances now and in the future. If they are credit challenged, I have been provided with the tools and training to confidently guide them onto a road to success in improving their overall credit, not just their score.
In the Virtual Branch we touch pretty much every department of the credit union so I am constantly learning ang growing in my position. The Virtual Branch really provides me with an opportunity to be an asset to the credit union, and I never feel like it’s the same old routine when I come to work. I really enjoy knowing that I am a part of the credit union as a whole.
What is something that working at WCU has taught you? The main thing that stands out to me, being a part of Wauna, is remembering when I attended NEO a year ago. We are constantly reminded of Wauna’s mission and vision as a credit union, but during NEO the mission and vision for Wauna’s employees is emphasized. I have never worked for anyone who really showed that they genuinely value their employees. We have amazing benefits, my team is amazing and I enjoy interacting with other departments and branches. We are given endless tools to build our knowledge and succeed and the opportunities for training are outstanding. It is easy to adopt the mission and vision of Wauna, because they fit right in with my own values. I have been here for a year. The amount of what I have learned about the financial industry and how credit and loans work is mind-blowing. I also continue to learn so much about things I had no idea about, from how to open a business account to understanding the intricacies of how debit cards and credit cards work on the servicing level.
One of the main things I have learned at Wauna that has been particularly life-changing for me, is how well my values mesh into what Wauna stands for. It is important to me to develop relationships with the people I assist and that is what Wauna is all about. I went to college and obtained my Bachelor’s degree in Anthropology/Sociology and Psychology. I thought for sure after holding onto that expensive piece of paper for a few years that I wasn’t going to make use of my education, but every day I get an opportunity to use those skills, especially with TMA. I’ve also learned that there are managers out there that want to offer you all the opportunities to succeed and I am extremely blessed and grateful to have Carli and Ashleigh as my supervisors. They truly exemplify being a part of a team, or as we like to call it, Our “Tribe”.
If you could choose one new hobby what would it be? I would like to have the time and energy to go hiking a couple of times a week. It is one of my favorite physical activities.
Has it been a long hot summer with the kids home from school for what now seems like an eternity? While parents mostly enjoy the lazy days of summer with the gang at home, by August many are more than ready to usher them back to school – until they realize the cost of sending the brood back to the books has become more exorbitant than last year.
As students gear up to go back to school and college, families this year will plan to spend more than ever on supplies ranging from pencils and backpacks to computers and dorm refrigerators—according to an annual survey released in July by the National Retail Federation.
It predicts record spending for back to school supplies in 2019: families with children in elementary school through high school plan to spend an average $696.70. Families with college students are expected to spend an average $976.78.
Have two kids in high school and another in college? That’s $2,370.18 on back-to-school supplies and gear – not including tuition and housing.
According to the survey, clothing and accessories will top K-12 families’ expenses at an average $239.82, followed by electronics such as computers, calculators, and phones ($203.44); shoes ($135.96); and supplies such as notebooks, pencils, backpacks, and lunch boxes ($117.49). Yikes!
So how can parents save?
The key is to plan ahead.
Even year-round—so you don’t feel the sting of shelling out oodles on back-to-school necessities at one time. Don’t wait for last-minute August purchases when prices are inflated. Buy supplies on sale during off months.
Create a wardrobe budget
And stick to it. What clothing items or accessories are already in your closet and perfectly recyclable? Help kids shop their closets and assess what’s already there, what can be repurposed, and what small accessories would really spice up the look.
Consider a back-to-school clothing allowance
One for each child. They can update current outfits and pieces in their own style. Help them understand how much different items cost and how to shop the sales to find the perfect addition to their own personal look.
Shop off-season for clothes and accessories
You know the drill. In the summer, retailers put end-of-season clothing and accessories on sale to make way for the coming change in seasons and styles. So, be sure to take advantage of those sales. Buy warm weather gear on sale in the fall and winter, and stock up on cold weather items early summer.
Spread out purchases
Remember what it’s like to pay for all of the kids’ myriad of supplies in one lump sum. Watch for year-round sales on things you know they’ll need for school—from paper and notepads to binders, crayons, and art supplies. Check the big box stores as well as office supply stores for the best seasonal buys.
Reuse perfectly good supplies from last year
Items like pencils, pens, binders, calculators, lunch boxes, and backpacks don’t go bad. They can easily be recycled year after year for incredible cost savings. So, at the end of the school year, save the loot and assess what can be reused and what needs to be replaced.
Prioritize sports and extracurricular activities
Are your kids into sports? Music? Art? Dance? Gymnastics? Those extracurricular activities can really add up. So what are the costs of signing up for one or more extracurricular or sporting activity during the school year? Financial experts advise parents not to overextend the family budget by saying ‘yes’ to everything. Rather, really help your child understand their passion and what would make the most sense to participate in by age group.
And remember, some downtime between school and activities is a healthy option. “It’s really important for kids to understand opportunity costs and the power of choices—if I play in an expensive traveling sports league, then I cannot also buy a guitar and pay for music lessons,” says Phillip Hansen, financial advisor for CUNA Mutual. “And there have been countless studies on how stressed and anxious kids—and parents—can become if over-programmed and over-extended financially. Letting kids be kids with lots of ‘white space’ on the schedule will make for a relaxed and creative school year.”
Kids can be expensive! With a little pre-planning, budgeting, honest family discussions, and prioritizing interests and passions, the 2019 school year can be a breeze financially. Happy back-to-school, Mom and Dad!
Wauna Credit Union has been serving members of the towns and cities surrounding the Columbia River for 52 years. We’re continuing to grow (if you want to join us check out our careers page). July is usually the hottest month of the year, and those celebrating anniversaries in July definitely bring the heat.
John Moore – 9 years What is your current position? I am the Chief Experience Officer and part of WCU’s leadership team. My job is to work with all member facing employees from our MCs in the branches to our different lending departments. My focus is making sure our members feel valued and appreciated for choosing to do their banking with us. I also get to work with our Virtual Branch and how we utilize technology to deliver service to our members who need help or services and can’t make it into a traditional branch.
What is something that working at WCU has taught you? Working here at WCU and how our values and mission statement all revolve around people helping people has really taught me the value of the relationships we build with our members. It is so exciting to be with them when they purchase a house, have a baby, or buy their first car. It is also so very rewarding to be there for our members through life’s challenges and to support and council them in a time of need. I love working with our employees and helping them in their careers and seeing the pride they take in their job helping our members throughout our footprint.
If you could choose one new hobby what would it be? I would love to have the time and resources to build custom furniture. I enjoy working with my hands and building things. I have so many smaller projects like making duck calls, fishing poles, and carvings but would love to have the equipment and time to build custom pieces for people.
Carli Lyon – 14 years What is your current position? I am AVP of Virtual Services. I oversee the Virtual Branch which assists members financial needs virtually, whether it is over the phone, online, chat, email, or our virtual teller machines. The Virtual Branch is crucial if members chooses to do their financial business in nontraditional ways such as going into a branch. With the assistance of online services such as U Banking, the Virtual Branch offer members the ability to get assistance with their financial with ease and convenience without having to step foot into a branch. We are the voice you hear when you call Wauna Credit Union. We are the faces you see when you use our drive through ITM machines. We are those on the other side of the chat or email window. Apply for a loan online, that is us too! And, we are always looking to expand our services and make it even easier. Be on the lookout for the possibilities we have coming to you such as ability to open new accounts online, Video Chat, and more!
What is something that working at WCU has taught you? Wauna Credit Union has taught me that hard work, dedication, and loyalty contributes to your success. I started when I was just 20 years old as an Part-time MSR. At that age, I was just starting out on my own and wasn’t sure where my future would lead but I was set out to be successful in whatever it was I choose to do even if I didn’t hold a college degree. That is exactly what I did and continue to do. Hard work, dedication, strong work ethic, loyalty, motivation, and initiative has made my career here possible.
If you could choose one new hobby what would it be? If I could choose one new hobby to start and money was not an issue, I would start a Pitbull Rescue Center. Not only do I have a passion for helping people, I have a desire to assist animals that are in need!
Heidi White – 7 years What is your current position? I’m a Member Consultant in the Clatskanie branch. One of the most important things about my job is member relationships, whether it’s establishing a rapport with a new member, or continuing to build upon a well-established relationship with somebody I’ve known for a long time. My job is constantly evolving to fit the needs of our members. I started out doing basic transactions and now I do everything from running coin to coaching a member on how to best improve their credit score so they can buy a home.
What is something that working at WCU has taught you? Working at WCU has taught me to always take the initiative to learn new things. Earlier in the year I noticed that the Credit Union National Association (CUNA) offered a program to teach frontline staff how to best serve our members. I took the training, passed my tests, and became the first CUNA recognized Member Services Level II employee at the credit union.
If you could choose one new hobby what would it be? If I could choose a new hobby, I would choose to travel all over the world. I just got back from Hawaii with my family and had such a fun time. Who knows, I might even become a travel writer and get paid for it.
Kristen DeForrest – 3 years What is your current position? I recently transferred to the Clatskanie Branch to work as our Compliance Specialist. I am currently learning as much as I can about my position! I spend my time filing daily reports, monitoring dormant accounts and assist in making sure we follow up to date policies and procedures.
What is something that working at WCU has taught you? Moving to a new branch has challenged me to build new relationships and proven that Wauna is one big family. Our core value of Team and Family spirit is alive all across our footprint.
If you could choose one new hobby what would it be? I love my little family and the outdoors so I would absolutely love to travel more. I want to experience the world with my family.
The “18th Street Development”, an affordable housing project of 16, 400-square-foot units, is hosting its ribbon-cutting ceremony in St. Helens today.
The project initially struggled to get off the ground, with funding issues keeping construction at bay. Funded by a $675,000 loan from Wauna Credit Union (WCU) and grants from Oregon Housing and Community Services (OHCS), the initiative broke ground in October of 2018.
Senator Betsy Johnson, Director of OHCS Margaret Salazar, and WCU AVP Regional Manager Pam Weller, helped facilitate the funding package. Concept, design, funding, and construction were all completed through local entities.
“We were doing an analysis of the housing crisis in Columbia County and WCU is designed to partner with and help our communities,” said WCU AVP Regional Manager Pam Weller. “We had to find a way to make this happen,” said Weller.
The project is addressing two of Oregon’s 5-year plan regarding affordable housing priorities, first by increasing Oregon’s supply of affordable rental housing and second by addressing homelessness.
“What a great opportunity for St. Helens and Columbia County,” said Senator Betsy Johnson. “The goal is a home for every Oregonian. Human housing is a right and every person here today makes this a reality,” said Johnson.
Twenty-five percent of the unit capacity is reserved for homeless people suffering from mental health issues. Occupancy for 16 individuals and/or families will be available in August.
Unfortunately, we live in a world where data security simply isn’t as secure as it should be. And this week, we’ve learned of yet another major breach. A hack at Capital One has exposed the information of millions of consumers in the U.S. and Canada. The hack represents another in a long list of data leaks over only a few years. Luckily, there are things you can do to protect yourself.
What we know
A 33-year-old Seattle resident, named Paige Thompson, gained access to over 100 million Capital One accounts and credit card applications
Thompson worked for Amazon Web Services, the cloud hosting company that Capital One was using
140,000 Social Security numbers, 1 million Canadian Social Insurance numbers and 80,000 bank account numbers, in addition to an undisclosed number of people’s names, addresses, credit scores, credit limits, balances, and other information, have been compromised
Thompson was able to gain access by exploiting a misconfigured web application firewall
She was arrested on 07/29/19
Capital One said the hack occurred March 22 and 23, 2019 and includes credit card applications as far back as 2005
The company says it has repaired the exposure and that it is “unlikely the information was used for fraud or disseminated by this individual”
What you can do
If you hold or have ever held an account with Capitol One, watch for alerts
The company is reaching out to consumers they know have been impacted
Do not reply to any emails or phone-calls relating to this breach as they may be phishing scams
Contact Capitol One directly
Sign up for a credit monitoring service
Set up fraud alerts on all of your credit and debit cards and accounts
Thompson claimed to use a special command to extract files in a Capital One directory stored on Amazon’s servers
The FBI believes Thompson tweeted that she wanted to distribute Social Security numbers along with full names and dates of birth
Someone who saw the information online notified Capital One of the leaked data
Capital One notified the FBI, who then searched Thompson’s residence on 07/29/19
The safety and security of our member accounts and personal information is the highest priority at Wauna Credit Union. Keeping member accounts safe and secure is also a shared responsibility. It’s important for members to review their periodic account statements when received and report any suspicious activity immediately to the Credit Union. Working together, we can increase the opportunities to protect the financial interests of our members and the Credit Union.
If you have additional questions or concerns about the security of your information, you are always welcome to contact us at your convenience.