2017 Working Group Innovations

Team name: Purely Original
Team members:
Ross Graham, Elements Financial FCU; Kammie Ahnert, Solidarity Community FCU
Innovation: A short webinar explaining the importance and impact of online customer reviews. This video also explains how and why your credit union needs to create a proper complaint management program.
Team name: Fire Bandits
Team members: Dusty Simmons, Financial Center First CU; Jason Dietz, Heritage FCU; Clint Stucky, Industrial FCU; Josh Lloyd, Teachers CU
Innovation: The Indiana Loaned Expert Program (iLEP) formalizes a process for lending and borrowing talent resources to help fill gaps, solve problems, and help sustain the long-term viability of small credit unions in Indiana.
Team name: Little Credit Union on the Prairie
Team members: Josh Sexton, Financial Builders FCU; Ed Valasek, Financial Center First CU; David Early, Indiana Members CU; Amanda Vester, Indiana State University CU; Lisa O’Neal, Purdue FCU
Innovation: End of Life Packet: The “End of Life Packet” was created as a solution to assist credit unions in supporting members and their loved ones through one of life’s most challenging events. This guide is designed to provide comfort and peace of mind for members as they prepare their final arrangements.

2014 Working Group Innovations

Team name: iCollaborate
Team members: Shelby Schuh, Beacon CU; Amy Benner, Solidarity Community CU; Curtis Meyer, Interra CU; Kelly Baran, FORUM CU; Latonya Gaither, Teachers CU.
Innovation: Financial literacy videos that credit unions can use and brand to make difficult financial topics easier for member to understand.
Video: 529
Video: IRA Savings 
Team name: The Garage Band
Team members: Bryan Myers, Crane FCU; Sven Leander, Financial Center FCU; Stephanie Snow, Eli Lilly FCU; Jenna Turner, Three Rivers FCU.
Innovation: Ready Set Go Guides: Education for your members on how to purchase a home, how to buy a car, understanding credit cards and understanding their credit report and credit score. Guides are customizable for each credit union, no cost and available in electronic and paper formats.

Team name: Four FITT
Team members: Amy Wells, Teachers CU; David Dekker, Interra CU; Brandon Speckman, FORUM CU.
Innovation: Provide three $10,000 funding grants through the cooperation of Indiana Credit Unions to Indiana-based entrepreneurs chosen by our credit union members..
Team name: Eclectic Intelligence Company
Team members: Ashli Moore, Eli Lilly FCU; Mark Moulton, Financial Center FCU; Daren Johnson, Indiana Members CU; Andrea Buescher, Evansville Teachers CU.
Innovation: A four-part Leadership Training Series called “The Passport to Leadership.” This educational series will have current leaders in the Indiana credit union industry sharing their knowledge, skills, traits, characteristics, etc., to develop the future leaders of tomorrow.

2013 Working Group Innovations

Team name: Blazing the Trail
Team members: Andrea Buescher, Evansville Teachers FCU; Deidre Davis, Notre Dame FCU; Kelly Baran, FORUM CU; Raine Lee, Vigo County FCU; Sven Leander, Financial Center FCU.
Innovation: A website that would allow Indiana credit unions to market their vehicle repossessions directly to individuals in the market for a pre-owned vehicle.
Team name: The Torch Bearers
Team members: Ashli Moore, Eli Lilly FCU; Bryan Myers, Crane FCU; Catrina Tate, Teachers CU; David Dekker, Interra CU; Micaela Wise, AAA FCU.
Innovation: Using social media for collaboration among Indiana credit unions.
Team name: CU@the Finish Line
Team members: Amy Benner, Solidarity Community FCU; Craig Dauksas, Members Choice FCU; Darlene Beers, Purdue FCU; Elaine Rinehart, Eli Lilly FCU; Tony Belton, General CU.
Innovation: A reloadable card with a savings account feature targeting the under-banked market to encourage credit union usage while teaching financial management.
Team name: CUBICLE
Team members: Amy Wells, Teachers CU; Karen Houser, Natco CU; Leland Cramer, Financial Center FCU; Mike Pence, KEMBA CU.
Innovation: A computer-based onboarding tool to schedule follow-up with new members. Currently there are small CUs that are doing this manually.
Team name: Reunion Team
Team members: Blake Dearing, FORUM CU; Chris Smith, Interra CU; Clinton Miller, CUNA Mutual Group (formerly of General CU).
Innovation: Partnership with Auto Trader on a trade-in marketplace, including a member-to-member buy and sell on the credit union website. This can also involve relationships with dealers or Auto Trader as potential buyers of the vehicles and dealers can serve as inventory resources

2012 Working Group Innovations

Team name: 5th Degree
Project name: My Life
Team members: Tara Holloway, Teachers CU; Brett Rinker, Industrial FCU; Bridgetta Bullock, Finance Center FCU; Courtney Keeler, FORUM CU; Michael Pence, KEMBA CU
Innovation: Standardized education and marketing items for several member milestones, beginning with buying a home.
Team name: Greased Lightning
Team members: Clinton Miller, General CU; Jackie Hofman, Purdue FCU; Elaine Rinehart, Eli Lilly FCU; Raine Lee, Vigo County FCU
Innovation: Partnership with AutoTrader to include trade-in marketplace and limited-time redeemable cash value vouchers for members, and dealership relationship building for credit unions.
Team name: Changinators
Team members: Catrina Tate, Teachers CU; Stacy Lengacher, Crane FCU; Lynette McClusky, Heritage FCU; Karen Houser, Natco CU
Innovation: Large-scale walk/run to raise funds for credit union causes.

Team name: @C3
Team members: Chris Smith, Interra CU; Amanda Middleton, Finance Center FCU; Cindy Crowley, Heritage FCU; Craig Dauksas, Members Choice FCU
Innovation: Automated onboarding for new members.

2011 Working Group Innovations

Team name: Firestarters
Team members: Daniel Woodhouse, Teachers CU; Carma Parrish, Perfect Circle CU; Brett Rinker, Industrial Centre FCU; Amanda Middleton, Finance Center FCU; Lynette McClusky, Heritage FCU
Innovation: Using credit card rewards as a means to save for children’s educations.

Team name: 4G
Team members: Cari Palmer, Energy Plus CU; Stacy Lengacher, Crane FCU; Bridgetta Bullock, Finance Center FCU; Chris Smith, Interra CU
Innovation: A social media platform for shared branching to increase awareness about convenience.

Team name: Ideas With Friends
Project name: CUWell
Team members: Emily Pierle, Eli Lilly FCU; Clinton Miller, General CU; Cindy Crowley, Heritage FCU; Tara Holloway, Teachers CU
Innovation: This wellness program offers options for credit unions of all sizes. Just choose the features that work best for you to start sharing and enjoying the benefits.

Team name: Full House
Project name: CU$ave
Team members: Kathy Houghtalen, Beacon CU; Janet Shaffer, Afena FCU; Kelly Johns, Partners 1st FCU; Jen Wolfe, FORUM CU; Jackie Hofman, Purdue FCU
Innovation: An iPhone application and website which will provide members and non-members special discount offers on credit union products and services plus credit union business partners’ products and services directly to their iPhone or email.

Team name: ignite Your Heart and Soul
Project name: Commitment to Change
Team members: Chad Kiser, Centra CU; Andrew Spirrison, FORUM CU; Nikki Healy, Fire Police City County FCU
Innovation: Community service aggregator.

2010 Working Group Innovations

Team name: 3FI
Project name: High School Credit Card!
Team Members: Michael Hostetler, Finance Center FCU; Dan Woodhouse, Teachers CU; Janet Shaffer, Afena FCU
Innovation: A low-limit credit card joined with financial education focused on high school students

Team Name: Four Girls and a Guy
Project name: Financial Check-up
Team Members: Carolyn Probasco, Members United FCU; Evelyn Royer, Purdue EFCU; Tim Lukomski, Heritage FCU; Cari Palmer, Energy Plus CU; Kathy Houghtalen, Beacon CU
Innovation: A full process involving financial counseling and a short-term line of credit to help financially distressed members

Team name: Green Squirrel
Team Members: Blake Dearing, FORUM CU; Chad Gramling, Three Rivers FCU; Carma Parrish, Perfect Circle CU; Emily Pierle, Eli Lilly FCU
Project elements: Affordable financing for long-term care situations

Team name: ignite Your Heart & Soul
Team Members: Kevin Sparks, Crane FCU; Becky Summers, Teachers CU; Andrew Spirrison, FORUM CU; Chad Kiser, Centra CU; Nikki Healy, Fire Police City County FCU
Innovation: Online aggregator for community-focused events held by credit unions that would track activity, money raised, hours contributed, etc. for projects initiated by credit unions statewide.

2009 Working Group Innovations

Team name: Bedtime Stories
Project name: GetIT!
Team Members: Kevin Sparks, Crane FCU; Tony Meier, Evansville Teachers FCU; Michael Hostetler, Finance Center FCU; Gary Icenogle, NorthPark Community FCU; Evelyn Royer, Purdue FCU
Project elements: This is a draw and discard-style financial literacy card game for children ages 8-14.

Team Name: Mall Cops
Project name: Sign & Share Account
Team Members: Blake Dearing, FORUM CU; Carolyn Probasco, Purdue FCU; Kevin Kosek, REGIONAL FCU; Becky Summers, Teachers CU; Jim Johnson, Three Rivers FCU
Innovation: Your autograph rewards charities. This innovation allows members to make donations to charities by using a credit union-based debit card.

Team name: Team Eagle Eye
Project name: Skip 'n Flip Savings
Team Members: Tim Lukomski, Heritage FCU; Sam Shanks, Indiana State University FCU; Kathy Sullivan, REGIONAL FCU; Chad Gramling, Three Rivers FCU; Michelle Peterson, Via CU
Innovation: When members choose to skip a payment on their loan using a credit union’s existing “skip a payment” option,” the credit union assists them in establishing an emergency savings account by “flipping” all or part of the skipped payment into a Skip n Flip Account.

Team name: Team Vision
Project name: Collaboration on 529 Plans
Team Members: Joe Hasto, Eli Lilly FCU; Debby Blake, Finance Center FCU; Lora Davison, Northern Indiana FCU
Innovation: This innovation would allow members to choose a credit union investment options in their 529 college savings plans which also would have a state of Indiana tax benefit. This group is working with state government officials to develop the product. Time horizon is 12-15 months.

2008 Working Group Innovations

Team name: The Combustible 5
Project name: Connect U
Team Members: Lora Davison, Northern Indiana FCU; Blake Dearing, FORUM CU; Gary Icenogle, NorthPark Community CU; Charles King, Hoosier Hills CU; Kathy Sullivan, REGIONAL FCU
Innovation: An interactive site which will allow both current members and potential members to network, exchange information, seek advice, share ideas, promote themselves or their businesses, and provide educational information. Connect U will transform a credit union’s Web site into a community center. The focus is on peer-to-peer networking and learning instead of the traditional credit union to member model. The credit union is more of a facilitator in this model. This group has several ideas that they are working on to make such a site niche-focused and to differentiate it from all of the noise in networking sites such as FaceBook, MySpace, LinkedIn, etc.

Team Name: iCITTE
Project name: CU Thru Life
Team Members: Jim Johnson, Three Rivers FCU; Tony Meier, Evansville Teachers FCU; Marie “Sam” Shanks, Indiana State University FCU; Kevin Sparks, Crane FCU; Becky Summers, Teachers CU
Innovation: Similar to Connect U, but solely focused on life stages. This group is aiming to provide a network of members to facilitate discussion and learning around specific life stages. Members would be involved to help manage the different life stage areas on the site, which would minimize the amount of credit union staff time to monitor and maintain it.

Team name: Taped Crusaders
Project name: DriveUp Savings
Team Members: Chad Gramling, Three Rivers FCU; Joe Hasto, Eli Lilly FCU; Michelle Peterson, Marion School ECU; Evelyn Royer, Purdue EFCU; Brian Wilkerson, KEMBA CU
Innovation: This group is piggybacking on one of the i3 group projects called Auto Savings, only with an interesting twist— the DriveUp Savings product is a savings account, such as a certificate, that is opened at the same time a member closes on their auto loan. The loan officer and member agree on a monthly contribution amount and through automated electronic transfers, the DriveUp Savings is funded at the same time the member makes an auto loan payment. This product offers the same rate to a member for both their savings account and their auto loan. More information is available at the group’s Web site

Team name: Perspective
Project name: FYI Savings – For Young Individuals
Team Members: Debby Blake, FORUM CU; Michael Hostetler, Finance Center FCU; Kevin Kosek, REGIONAL FCU; Tim Lukomski, Heritage FCU; Carolyn Probasco, Members United FCU
Innovation: This unique savings concept is similar to a 401(k), but was created specifically for young individuals. It includes an open enrollment period, a match from the credit union, and other unique components to encourage savings for young people. The funds would not be available until the child reaches the age of 18, and are intended to be used for significant life events such as college, purchase of a home, etc.​