Iowa Credit Union Foundation Invested Over $165,000 to Support Financial Well-Being of Iowans in 2023

POSTED on February 7, 2024 IN ICUF

Highlights 2023 Impact and New Board Members

(Des Moines, Iowa) - The Iowa Credit Union Foundation (ICUF), the philanthropic arm of the Iowa Credit Union League, invested more than $165,000 in mission-aligned initiatives in 2023 to help champion financial well-being for all. Throughout 2023, ICUF strengthened its impact by publishing its first statewide report which addressed barriers to financial inclusion, expanded programming and continued support for credit union members and state-wide community organizations.

Highlights of ICUF’s impact include:

  • ICUF announced a three-year, $150,000 investment in a new Financial Inclusion Grant initiative that will address barriers to financial well-being for minority populations in Iowa. This announcement followed the release of ICUF’s 2023 statewide report, “Economic Realities of Communities of Color”, which identified challenges faced by Iowa’s most vulnerable communities. ICUF will work with Iowa credit unions to offer grant opportunities for nonprofit organizations. The grants will target common barriers to financial inclusion, such as access to affordable housing, business ownership, childcare and education.
  • ICUF hosted its fifth annual ‘People Helping People’ Financial Coach Program, training credit union employees to help members navigate difficult financial situations and address financial inclusion needs. More than 200 coaches from 40 Iowa credit unions have graduated from the program since its inception in 2019.
  • ICUF awarded $23,000 to 12 Iowa credit union members pursuing post-secondary education through its Warren A. Morrow Memorial Scholarship program.
  • For the fourth year in a row, ICUF invested in the University of Northern Iowa’s Financial Skills for Smart Living Program, which provides educators with personal finance curriculum empowering students with the skills to make informed financial decisions. More than 12,000 students have already taken the course in high schools across Iowa.

Serving as the hub for Iowa credit union philanthropy, ICUF continues to address the needs of Iowans through investments, collaboration, education and advocacy. 50 credit unions across the state supported ICUF with a record-breaking charitable donation of over $135,000. Additionally, ICUF received $45,000 in year-end gifts from Affiliates Management Company (AMC), the holding company of the Iowa Credit Union League and its affiliates, including Coopera, First Community Trust, N.A., ViClarity and PolicyWorks. Collectively, this adds up to over $180,000 in donations for ICUF to jumpstart its work in 2024.

“The Iowa Credit Union Foundation is grateful for annual support from Iowa credit unions, AMC and its family of companies,” said Ena Babic Barnes, ICUF Executive Director. Donations like this allows us to make our Financial Inclusion Grant initiative possible, and support credit unions and communities across Iowa with our new and existing grants and initiatives.”

To start the new year, ICUF welcomed Dave J. Cale, President and CEO of Financial Plus Credit Union and John Parks, CEO of Sioux Valley Community Credit Union, to its Board of Directors at its annual meeting in December. Both will serve a three-year term.

"As a seasoned credit union advocate who has witnessed the tremendous work of the Iowa Credit Union Foundation, I am both honored and excited to join this team of exceptional leaders who are passionate about helping all Iowans achieve financial well-being,” said John Parks, CEO of Sioux Valley Community Credit Union. “ICUF has collaborated with credit unions across Iowa to provide financial coaching training to credit union staff. Credit unions who have gone through ICUF’s Financial Coach program have positively impacted members and non-members in our tri-state community of Iowa, South Dakota and even Nebraska.”

“It is a sincere honor to now serve on the Iowa Credit Union Foundation board and collaborate with other strategic leaders,” said Dave Cale, President and CEO of Financial Plus Credit Union. “ICUF’s mission of improving the financial lives of Iowans aligns with my own philosophy, and I’m excited to help ensure its goals are realized.”

Several credit union champions finalized their terms within ICUF Board of Directors - Danielle Gratton from Dupaco Community Credit Union, Ann McMillian from IH Mississippi Valley Credit Union and Angela Drury from 1st Gateway Credit Union.

The 2024 ICUF Board of Directors are:

  • Board Chair: Marian Holmes, Community 1st Credit Union
  • Vice Chair: Jordan Hensley, Peoples Credit Union
  • Secretary: Julie Willse, Greater Iowa Credit Union
  • Treasurer: Rebecca Neades, GreenState Credit Union
  • Alejandro Alaniz, Greater Iowa Credit Union
  • Jim Anderson, Des Moines Metro Credit Union
  • Mary Bontrager, Community Volunteer
  • Dave Cale, Financial Plus Credit Union
  • Adam Carroll, National Financial Educators
  • Donna Dyer, TruStage
  • Kim Fettkether, Veridian Credit Union
  • Jennifer Naeve, Ascentra Credit Union
  • Paula O’Rourke, Linn Area Credit Union
  • John Parks, Sioux Valley Community Credit Union

Founded in 1995 as the philanthropic arm of the ICUL, ICUF’s mission is guided by the credit union philosophy of ‘people helping people’. ICUF works to champion financial well-being for all through collaboration, education, investments and advocacy. For more information, visit

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