Business View Magazine | December 2020

211 BUSINESS VIEW MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2020 ELGA CREDI T UNION are the original crowdfunding, with members depositing their funds for a return in the form of dividends and those deposits being lent out to other members. Members contribute to lend to one another with the credit union acting as a facilitator.” ELGA truly lives the philosophy of serving the underserved, issuing about 90 percent of its loans to individuals who would be considered moderate to extremely low income. “That cultivates loyalty,” says Katzur, “when you’re striving to help those that really need it. I think that’s what makes members come back to us time and time again.” Over the years, they’ve been able to expand their membership base by adding more select employer groups (SEGs) and by entering into mergers with other credit unions early on. The switch to becoming a community charter has been good for ELGA on multiple levels; they’ve strengthened their community ties and grown meteorically as a business, recently surpassing $1 billion in assets. Katzur admits, “We’re really proud of that milestone. In the world of banking we’re a large credit union, but small when you compare us to banks overall. To me, all credit unions are ‘Small But Mighty’.” That attitude has helped ELGA face the challenges brought on by COVID-19, and allowed them to gain momentum during a volatile period of transition. “We’ve adapted to the new safety rules and regulations and fared quite well,” says Katzur. “When our members started suffering because of job losses, we did what was needed to help them, whether that was skipping loan payments for them, making modifications