The Dakota Credit Union Association officially announced its new name this week at its annual summit meeting in Sioux Falls, SD Formerly the Credit Union Association of the Dakotas, it will remain the financial trade association that represents credit unions in the North and South Dakota. .
The association shared a video message Tuesday during the opening session explaining the momentum of the name change.
The North Dakota and South Dakota Credit Union Leagues were formed in 1938 and 1939, respectively. Credit union leaders from the two states came together and became the first in the CUNA-League system to collaborate and successfully merged into a single trade association of multi-state credit unions in 2007.
The new league was launched as the Mid-America Credit Union Association, later renamed the Credit Union Association of the Dakotas, a name it used until today’s announcement.
“We knew we had an identity problem when we had to continually explain to lawmakers and community leaders who we were and where we came from,” says Jeff Olson, president and CEO of the association. “Of course, we just started calling ourselves Dakota Credit Unions.”
The combined history of the Dakotas is forever linked. At one time, the two states were simply known as the Dakota Territory, until they split up and became the 39th and 40th states on the same day in 1889.
Credit unions have been located here throughout most of state history, playing a major role in the growth and expansion of each state, as well as many local communities.
“There is no doubt that our two states have a lot in common,” said Olson. “We share similar geography, weather and even our economies are similar. We also share a collective heritage in culture, sociology and traditions. Like our credit unions and individual credit union members, our association is evolving, growing and modernizing, while maintaining our proud heritage when we were officially a Dakota. It’s who we are and who we represent – no further explanation is necessary. As the new Dakota Credit Union Association, we envision the future as a proud, strong and effective advocacy organization for our members and communities.
The Dakota Credit Union Association has also adopted an updated and modernized corporate branding and color.