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Oregon Credit Unions Reward Members with Dividends

Rogue Credit Union was able to return $4 million in dividends to its members this year. (Rogue Credit Union)
Rogue Credit Union was able to return $4 million in dividends to its members this year. (Rogue Credit Union)
December 24, 2018

MEDFORD, Ore. – Credit unions in Oregon are showing their commitment to sharing their profits with members.

Just in time for the holidays, Oregon credit unions gave money back to members this month in the form of loyalty dividends.

As cooperative, nonprofit organizations, credit unions don't have to pay stockholders as do other financial institutions, making dividends back to members possible.

Medford-based Rogue Credit Union returned $4 million to roughly 116,0009 of its members.

Gene Pelham, president and CEO of Rogue, lays out his strategy for the credit union.

"Are we driving good profits?” he asks. “Are we doing things, are we selling products, providing services that the member benefits from, the staff feels good about and the credit union makes enough to continue our operations, and keep the lights on and pay salary?"

Pelham says this is the second time since Rouge Credit Union began its loyalty dividend program a decade ago that it's been able to return money in the form of dividends to members.

Clackamas Federal Credit Union in Milwaukie, Ore. also divvied out $1.2 million.

Clackamas Federal Credit Union serves about 32,000 members.

Dividends also went out to Rogue Credit Union employees. Pelham says he got to hear stories from employees about what those funds will mean this holiday season.

"A staff member that didn't think she was going to be able to help her mother who lives far away to staff members that are overcoming financial challenges and so on,” he relates. “And so, I think I had more tears in one day with our staff, and they were all happy tears. They weren't sad tears."

Rogue Credit Union is a financial cooperative with branches in Coos, Curry, Jackson, Josephine, Douglas and Klamath counties with an asset base of more than $1.4 billion.

Eric Tegethoff, Public News Service - OR