I’d like to take this opportunity to announce my impending retirement from Members First Credit Union in September.
Spending the last decade of my professional career at Members First has been a privilege and a joy. When I joined Members First in 2012 as CFO and took on the role of president and CEO the following year, it marked the beginning of a fruitful and rewarding journey.
One of the first projects we took on was divesting the credit union of our Franklin branch in 2014. Two years later, our Manchester-based credit union branched out to serve the community of Bedford. In 2019, the credit union’s field of membership broadened even further when we opened our charter to serve all of New Hampshire. Today, we’re proud to offer membership to anyone who lives, works, or goes to school in the Granite State.
The challenges of the pandemic were many. With the technology already in place, we were able to continue serving you, but we had to think creatively in order to keep everyone safe. In 2020, we began construction of our new main office located at 7 Salmon Street in Manchester. We chose to move the project forward, following strict safety precautions, and the build had a positive economic impact on our community when it was needed most. In 2021, it was my honor to host the grand opening of our new headquarters. I’m proud of my team and our partners who persevered to make this beautiful building a reality, especially under unprecedented circumstances.
Beyond these accomplishments, I’m gratified by Members First Credit Union’s commitment to our community. I believe that the stronger and safer the community, the better it is for our members and those who live, work, and play here. With the backing of our generous board, we have been able to support a variety of local organizations who invest in youth, education, housing, addiction treatment, and mental health services. I am very proud that Members First was the only credit union in the country to donate 100% of the dividend we received from the NCUA Share Insurance Fund to causes that deeply impact Greater Manchester: homelessness, drug misuse, and youth at risk.
To our members, I want to offer special thanks and appreciation. It has been a pleasure to get to know many of you over the past decade and I appreciate your trust in us. I know Members First from the inside out and I can assure you that your trust is well placed.
Bruce B. Leighton