Earlier this month, Callahan & Associates visited Darden Employees Federal Credit Union ($28.8M, Orlando, FL) for our in-depth Anatomy centerpiece for our quarterly report on the industry, which next releases in January.
Nestled in the corner of Darden Restaurants’ state-of-the-art headquarters, Darden Employees FCU now serves the restaurant corporation’s employees, including restaurant servers and managers of restaurants like Olive Garden, Red Lobster, and LongHorn Steakhouse. Formerly Multimedia Federal Credit Union, Darden Employees FCU opted to take advantage of an offer from Darden to change its name in return for financial backing from the company and an expanded SEG group.
Darden Employees Federal Credit Union operates from Darden Restaurants' headquarters in Orlando, FL.
Our visit with Darden consumed a full afternoon of video taped interviews with Jim Kasch, CEO, Brooke Rodriguez, AVP of marketing, Tonya Voltolina, Chief Financial Officer who also oversees member service, and Justin Curcio, Chief Operating Officer who also oversees lending. Their energy, enthusiasm, and collective willpower for the future of Darden Employees FCU was apparent. All four interviewees offered distinct perspectives on how Darden Employees FCU transitioned from Multimedia FCU, but they all echoed the same motivation to get the credit union to a point where it does not financially depend on Darden Restaurants to thrive.
Since the transition to serving the restaurant industry workers, Darden Employees FCU has become a growth leader in several areas, as our Callahan & Associates 2013 Credit Union Directory reports. It ranks in the top five credit unions nationwide in these metrics: five-year member growth, 12-month share growth, 12-month member growth, 12-month loan growth, and 12-month growth in average member relationship.
We look forward to telling more about the strategies and priorities that have shaped Darden Employees FCU’s success in our 3Q 2012 CUSP.