CO-OP Financial Services has accepted an invitation to become a member of the Clinton Global Initiative, founded by former President Bill Clinton to gather international leaders to create and implement innovative solutions to the world’s most pressing challenges.
“CO-OP came to the attention of CGI earlier this year when the organization served as an advisor to the CO-OP THINK Prize 15,” said Samantha Paxson, Chief Marketing Officer for CO-OP. “Our ‘challenge’ encouraged people from all walks of life to develop ideas that called on the power of community to financially empower those who need it most.
“It was clear that the goals of CGI align well with the core credit union value of people helping people,” said Paxson. “We are delighted to bring a credit union voice to the spirit of collaboration that is at the heart of CGI, as well as demonstrate to global leaders in the fields of business, philanthropy and government what credit unions can do to effect change for the better.”
CO-OP’s inaugural contribution to the organization took place in June by joining more than 1,000 leaders in Denver, Colorado, for the 2015 CGI America conference. The gathering focused on developing solutions for economic growth, long-term competitiveness and social mobility in the United States. CO-OP participated in the Financial Opportunity working group, which was one of 10 topic-specific working groups that met multiple times throughout the meeting.
“Survey after survey shows that consumers today want to do business with organizations that are committed to positive social values,” said Paxson. “Getting involved with CGI is part of our own commitment to demonstrate that credit unions have always been unique financial institutions. We didn’t grow a ‘social conscience’ yesterday. Credit unions have always been dedicated to the financial well-being of their members and their communities – and by that we mean, today, our country and our world.”
CGI is a purpose-driven organization that asks of its members to make “Commitments to Action” to address issues and work collaboratively to promote actionable solutions. The organization offers nine tracks to pursue on a year-round basis, such as “Market Based Approaches,” “Technology” and “Education and Workforce Development.”
CO-OP is currently considering which track or tracks to contribute to as a new member.
“We see an opportunity here to work as a connector and distributor of ideas and initiatives across the 3,500 credit unions that CO-OP serves, and which represent more than 50 million American account holders,” said Paxson. “We look forward to putting ideas into action in the coming months.”