Embarrass Vermillion FCU raises most funds in state for Minnesota Credit Union for Kids
Mesabi Daily News © 06/23/2014 – EMBARRASS, Minn. – The Embarrass Vermillion Federal Credit Union took part in Minnesota Credit Unions for Kids — and scored highest in the state raising funds for the Children’s Miracle Network, an international non-profit organization to aid children’s hospitals, medical research and awareness of children’s health issues. “Gillette Children’s Specialty Healthcare Center is our biggest charity,” Roxi Jensen, Embarrass Vermillion Credit Union vice president, said in an email. “Our team held and participated in events to support the kids.”
Participation in the Minnesota Credit Unions for Kids by the Embarrass Vermillion firm raised $13,862 during the 2013 fiscal year, which is $4.07 per member. “Credit unions carry the proud tradition of changing their community for the better. Minnesota Credit Union for Kids is proud to be part of that tradition,” said Jensen. Second place went to South Metro Credit Union based in Prior Lake, which raised $7,685, or $2.29 per member, and third place to Minnco Credit Union based in Cambridge, for raising $29,869, or $1.18 per member.
The Embarrass Vermillion firm, now in existence for 73 years, is keeping up with the times. “We recently have an app in the Apple App Store and The Play Store, which now includes remote deposit,” said Jensen. “You can deposit a check to your account from anywhere using your smart phone. We provide the right products and services for the right reason.”
Embarrass Vermillion was chartered in 1941 to serve members of the Embarrass Cooperative Association living in Embarrass or within a radius of 15 miles. “We expanded our charter in 1967 to serve residents of Vermillion Lake, Pike, Embarrass, Waasa, Kugler and Breitung Townships,” said Jensen. “In 1976 we added the unorganized townships 61 and 62 Range 14 and employees and their families. Our last expansion was in 2005 when we included all of St. Louis county north of Highway 16.”
Dean Miller has been the manager since 1988 when the assets were $3.8 million. He is now president and CEO and the assets are nearly $27 million, and he has been in the credit union movement since 1974. Jensen, who started in the credit union business in 1985 and started at Embarrass Vermillion in 2005, said the Embarrass Vermillion facility serves 3,940 members. It has locations in Embarrass, Tower and Aurora and has 12 employees.
Jensen said, “In the past few years we have added many electronic services including our website, online banking, bill payment and just recently we have added Money Desktop (online financial management tool) which is a great tool for our members to set up and monitor all their accounts. This program provides budgeting tools as well helps organize their finances for tax time and it’s all free. Our team supports our local schools and many clubs and organizations.” Among the community events the Embarrass Vermillion Federal Credit Union sponsors include the following:
- Golf tournament for credit unions throughout the state.
- Candy bar sales.
- Sale of leather checkbook and debit card covers, with 100 percent of the profits going to children.
- Sale of hearts and chains in February, a statewide event, raised $1,184.68 this year. “The team member selling the most chains and hearts wins a tour of Gillette’s. That’s all it takes to get them motivated. A member of our team decided to donate proceeds from a co-ed softball tourney to Gillette,” said Jensen.
- Hoyt Lakes Cabin Fever Days Plunge, raising $3,000 for children’s events.
The Embarrass Vermillion board of directors includes Roland “Charlie” Fowler, chairman; Marty Hendrickson, vice chairman; Ruby Laitinen, secretary; Bernie Metler, treasurer; and Donald Nuutinen, Robert Turk and Dave Schmid.
Photo: Jaime Preshiren and Roxi Jensen accept the award for most money raised per member at the annual Minnesota Credit Union meeting in Bloomington.