Scott Credit Union

AT A GLANCE SCOTT CREDIT UNION WHAT: Full-service, member-owned, member-operated financial institution WHERE: Home office in Edwardsville, IL WEBSITE: nion recession and the current coronavirus pandemic. The bold, even gutsy, moves that SCU has undertaken to support and protect its members and staff during both good and tough times have set this innovative credit union well apart from its competitors. And everyone involved loves them for it. As Padak recounts, “We originally started at Scott Field in 1943 to serve civilian personnel out at the Scott Air Force Base. That quickly evolved into serving the military and their dependent family members. The credit union SEG (Select Employee Group) back then was Scott Field. When I came here in Feb. 1994, we had just started to transition to zip codes. At that time, we were about $150 million in assets and had five branch offices. And that was the beginning of our transition from a single employee group to a geographic field of membership.” Not long after zip codes arrived in the ‘90s, regulators started to allow expansion by counties, which enabled SCU to stretch its territory. Today, they serve three counties in Missouri and 26 in Illinois. Padak reports, “In 2005, we had $350 million in assets. Then in 2008/09, with the Great Recession, when a lot of other financial institutions hunkered down and got very conservative, we decided to serve our members and make loans. And we started to see some really explosive growth. Now we’re right at $1.4 billion in assets with 145,000 members and serving 29 counties.” It was a bold and scary decision to continue lending during a recession, having to worry whether members would be able to pay back loans if they lost their jobs. But as a not-for-profit cooperative, SCU knew they had a responsibility to support their members in good and bad. Padak admits, “As a very well capitalized organization, I think we took a calculated risk in knowing that even if this does go south, we were capable of handling it. At the same time, we felt