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Safeguarding the future for our members

Seattle Credit Union is a not-for-profit credit union that is owned by its membership, not shareholders as in the case of for-profit corporations. The credit union membership elects a set number of board members to serve three-year terms on the Board of Directors. An election for open positions on the Board of Directors is held annually. Terms are staggered to maintain continuity of three positions each year. The results of each of the annual elections are announced at the Annual Meeting of the Membership as well as in multiple credit union communications, immediately following the meeting date.

Responsibilities of Our Leadership

The Board of Directors is responsible for the governance of the credit union to ensure that the credit union is adhering to its established policies and fiduciary responsibilities in the interest of the membership. This is done through several board sub-committees that may occasionally include non-elected volunteers or advisors. These committees and their current members are detailed below.

The membership also elects an independent Audit Committee to monitor the action of the Board of Directors and to review the financial and operational audits of the credit union, and to serve as the tellers of the annual election. You may view information about committee members below.

Our Executive Leadership Team leads the departments of the credit union to ensure we are meeting our members' needs and that we are delivering on the goals of the organization. The team values collaboration, inclusion, and accountability across all levels of the credit union, and believes that Seattle Credit Union can help make our local communities a better place to bank, work, and live.

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Our current Board of Directors

  • Carlos Ruiz, Board Chair
  • Robin Shuler, Vice Chair
  • Shahzad Qadri, Treasurer
  • Rebecca Kerr, Secretary
  • Deanna Clark, Member
  • Joe Davila, Member
  • Jordan Grant, Member
  • Jonelle M.C. Johnson, Member
  • Nelson Reyneri, Member
  • Ezra Altaras, Associate Member

Our current audit Committee Members

  • Sue Her, Chair
  • Deanna Clark, Secretary
  • Richard Leigh, Member

Our current Executive Leadership Team

  • Richard Romero, Chief Executive Officer
  • Mele Miller, Chief Operating Officer
  • Kelly Earnest, Chief People Officer
  • Lee Pierce, Chief Lending Officer

Meet The Board

Our board is dedicated to the needs of our members and the community.

Contact The Board

Carlos Ruiz

Carlos Ruiz

Board Chair

Carlos believes in Seattle Credit Union’s commitment to serving underserved communities and developing internal diversity. From his personal experience as a Costa Rican who grew up in an ethnically rich and culturally diverse community, Carlos brings a unique perspective with complementary professional skills to help Seattle Credit Union better serve its membership.

The challenges facing the immigrant community are diverse, and when combined with a lack of financial institutions that are willing or able to serve them, these challenges can become insurmountable to many. Carlos has learned how the right help, from the right people, is often enough to overcome such obstacles.

As a child, his mother relied on him to accompany her everywhere as a translator until she learned English. She was intelligent and capable, but banks serving their community made no effort to accommodate for her as they would for others. Having also experienced the difficulty of naturalizing in 2000, he is excited about Seattle Credit Union’s citizenship loan program and feels that he can empathize with the communities in which Seattle Credit Union is dedicated to serving.

For over 20 years, Carlos has worked for companies both large and small in the technology industry. Since moving to Seattle in 2011, he has joined the Association of Latino Professionals for America (ALPFA), first as Chapter president, and currently as an adviser.

Robin Shuler

Robin Shuler

Vice Chair

Robin Shuler was elected to the Seattle Credit Union board of directors in 2016. He has been a Seattle Credit Union member since 2004. As a passionate member and director, he enjoys working to assure first-class fiscal management, stability, customer service, and transparency.

Robin is an experienced finance and operations executive with over 25 years of experience as a Chief Financial Officer and executive in a variety of industries and businesses, including significant nonprofits. Currently, he works as a financial consultant and serves for-profit companies and nonprofit organizations as an Interim CEO/CFO/COO/Executive Director.

Robin's CFO experience includes Qualis Health, W&H Pacific, Applied Geotechnology Inc., Abacus Engineered Systems, Lifelong AIDS Alliance, Benaroya Hall, and Seattle Symphony, among others. His Board experience includes AGI Technologies, Mustard Seed Associates, and Group Health Foundation. He's the Past-President of Financial Executives International (Washington State Chapter) - a nonprofit membership organization for financial management professionals and was an honoree/finalist for the PSBJ nonprofit “CFO of the Year” in 2009.

Robin is a licensed CPA in Washington. He's earned an MBA in Finance from University of Puget Sound and a BA in Accounting from Seattle Pacific University. He lives in Kirkland with his wife, Ellen.

Shahzad Qadri

Shahzad Qadri

Treasurer

Shahzad Qadri is a Partner in the firm’s Redmond, Washington office of Wong Fleming and Chair of the Corporate & Immigration Law practice group. He concentrates his practice in the areas of corporate transactions including securities issues, private offerings, IPOs, as well as business and immigration law, with a focus on investment based EB-5 Regional Centers.

Prior to joining Wong Fleming, Mr. Qadri served as a Deputy Prosecuting Attorney for the King County Prosecutors’ Office in Seattle, Washington.

Mr. Qadri has the distinct honor of being named as a “rising star” in the legal profession by Law & Politics. In addition, Mr. Qadri was nominated as a fellow to the Washington Leadership Institute. Mr. Qadri was also awarded the John Gilmore (2014) award for excellence in Advocacy for Minority Businesses by the National Minority Supplier Diversity Council (NW Mountain Council).

Most recently Mr. Qadri was a named to Lawyers of Color’s Second Annual Hot List, which recognizes minority attorneys with exceptional achievements and contributions in the legal field.

 

Rebecca Kerr

Rebecca Kerr

Secretary

As an experienced, global executive, Rebecca has substantial success leading multicultural teams jointly driving digital transformation programs. She has lived and/or worked on six continents and achieved high customer satisfaction levels with leaders at top tier financial institutions. She has achieved the level of trusted advisor with her clients as a result of her ethical leadership and practice, active support of diversity and inclusion and her enablement of consequential multicultural team experiences, where exceptional, strategic outcomes have been achieved. Rebecca is committed to driving business results through collaboration, inspiring teams to achieve their best and making personal investments in developing and encouraging talent. Now that Rebecca has returned to her permanent home in Seattle, she is eager to bring her experience and learnings to benefit her community and to participate in the actions needed to better enable a positive, inclusive transformation of our Greater Seattle communities.

Rebecca holds BS and MBA degrees from the University of Washington and is an avid supporter of continuing education and life-long learning. In 2019, she completed the Women on Boards Program at the UW and the Corporate Governance Program at Columbia University in NYC. She recently retired from a global career at IBM, during which she was the Global Client Partner from IBM for Fortune 100 customers driving Digital Transformation projects including Allianz SE, National Australian Bank, Deutsche Bank AG, Nokia, Solectron and Boeing. In 2018, Rebecca founded Global Creative Solutions - a small business providing sourcing, importing and consulting in partnership with artisans from developing economies in countries along the old Silk Road.

Deanna Clark

Deanna Clark

Board Member

Deanna is honored and excited to serve all Seattle Credit Union Members. She has over 25 years of leadership experience in the aerospace, transportation and insurance industries which she will use to ensure our credit union has a growth strategy that will foster opportunities for individuals and businesses in our community.

She has held a variety of roles including positions in financial management, cyber security, risk management, and strategic planning. She previously served as a Boeing Employee Community Trustee, granting millions of dollars annually to nonprofit community programs in the Greater Puget Sound region.

Deanna holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Central Washington University and an Executive Masters of Business Administration degree from the University of Washington. She is a member of NACD (National Association of Corporate Directors) and is Cyber Risk Oversight certified. She also serves as the Vice Chair of the Auburn Municipal Airport, the 4th largest airport in the region.

At present, she is a Board Member at Seattle Credit Union and a member of the Audit Committee.

Joe Davila

Joe Davila

Board Member

Joe Davila is a father of four and a Kirkland resident since 2011. In business, he spent his time bringing together the very best of what he learned from his professional successes in technology startups, their acquisitions, and consulting at KPMG. Today with Virsys12, his focus is on leading an organization that applies the strength of Salesforce’s market-leading solutions to the most complex challenges in healthcare. He holds a strong appreciation for the measured balance of technology, human talent, and intelligent business processes applied to every evolving business models across the banking and financial services, healthcare, state & local government, and technology industries.

As business leaders, we hold the responsibility of setting the example for tomorrow’s leaders and sharing our time and talents within our community. Joe serves as Treasurer of Youth Focus Incorporated, Corporate Advisory Board member for APLFA Seattle, and Advisory Board member for ZenLedger. While at KPMG, Joe was the Seattle Office Chair for the Hispanic and Latino Network (HLN), coach and mentor for the ALPFA collegiate members. He believes that corporate teams and communities are stronger when diverse, and has long been a champion for ‘pushing up and pulling up’ future Latino leaders through these organizations. When his term on the Youth Focus Board ended and he moved on from KPMG, he found an opening to engage with an organization like the Seattle Credit Union, which shares his core principles of inclusion, diversity, collaboration, and community.

Joe is a graduate of Stanford University and hold a B.A. in Economics.

Jordan Grant

Jordan Grant

Board Member

Jordan Grant currently serves as Director, Consulting Services at GQG Partners, a firm that invests money on behalf of pensions, foundations and endowments. He has held various roles related to investing and financial analysis for the past 25 years. As an early employee of one of the first online brokerage firms, he served as a Corporate Credit Analyst at S&P Global, where he assessed the creditworthiness of both large public and small private companies. He worked as a merchant banker in South Africa where he raised capital for natural resource companies, and co-founded a natural gas processing company in Nigeria, which the board later asked him to run during a critical period in its development.

All four of Jordan's grandparents migrated to New York City from the Caribbean and he grew up interacting with a diverse group of transplanted people. Both of his parents were fortunate enough to attend college, but they did not forget or abandon their roots. Jordan watched his mother save money in a sou-sou (informal community based cooperative savings association), but also witnessed members of his extended community struggle to gain formal access to credit.

Running a business in Lagos, Nigeria gave him a very clear understanding of how difficult it is for people to be productive when they do not have ready access to banking and credit. But it also exposed him to creative solutions. He would like to contribute all these experiences to helping Seattle Credit Union to achieve its mission of extending banking and credit to communities that have historically been overlooked.

 

Jonelle Johnson

Jonelle M.C. Johnson

Board Member

Ms. Johnson is a sales professional at Nordstrom and currently serves as a wardrobe consultant for women and men in high-end fashions. As a top performer, she is the recipient of the Nordstrom prestigious Allstar Award and Pacesetter status achievement. She is part of the top 25 sales professionals at the Downtown Seattle Flagship Store. Ms. Johnson has an extensive banking background and experience which would be of value to the Board of Directors of Seattle Credit Union. She is a former executive banker who managed sales teams that identified and implemented strategies to acquire new relationships and expand existing relationships. Her teams provided domestic and international treasury management expertise to assist corporations, government entities and nonprofit organizations with fulfilling their financial strategic objectives. She has also managed national customer service and bank operations groups for various business lines.

Ms. Johnson has an exceptional history of being an active leader in the community. She served on a number of diverse boards in leadership positions. Her current community affiliations and board of directors include O'Dea High School Advisory Board of Directors, Seattle Cancer Care Alliance, Seattle University Board of Regents, Seattle Rotary #4, Greater Chapter of The Links, Incorporated and YWCA of Seattle King Snohomish.

Nelson Reyneri

Nelson Reyneri

Board Member

Nelson Reyneri serves as Principal in Point B’s Environmental, Social and Governance practice. Point B is a consulting company dedicated to helping organizations with critical initiatives in the areas of customer engagement, growth investments, workforce experience and operations excellence. In this role he leads and advises client engagements within the ESG industry across markets and supports the development of Point B’s people as a key leader in their ESG practice.

Nelson has over two decades of leadership experience in the energy sector, serving as part of the leadership team that scaled Liberty Power from a startup to becoming one of the largest minority owned businesses in the country. Nelson currently serves as Chair Elect of the Board of the US Hispanic Chamber of Commerce on the Board of the National Utilities Diversity Council Credit Union and as Vice Chair of the Board of Together Washington.

Nelson holds a Master’s Degree in Business Administration from Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management. He also holds a Master’s Degree in Public Administration from Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government, and a Bachelor’s degree, Summa Cum Laude, in Psychology and Philosophy and in Political Science from Boston University, where he was elected Phi Beta Kappa.

Ezra Altaras

Ezra Altaras

Associate Board Member

Ezra is the founder and managing principal of a local financial advisory practice affiliated with one of the largest national financial services firms. Having worked in the financial services and banking industry since 2004, his prior experience includes 13 years as a financial advisor, portfolio manager, and First Vice President at one of the largest national banks. Ezra holds the Certified Financial Planner™ professional certification through the CFP® Board of Standards, the Chartered Retirement Planning Counselor℠ designation through the College for Financial Planning, and a bachelor’s degree in economics from the University of Washington.

Ezra’s career in financial services and banking has been aimed toward helping clients gain and maintain financial control, independence, and freedom. He was drawn to serve on the board after learning about Seattle Credit Union’s unique primary mission to serve underserved and immigrant communities. A Seattle area Native, Ezra has deep local roots with a diverse family background, understanding his ancestors were blessed to have successfully immigrated to the United Sates where they enjoyed freedoms and opportunities not available in many countries around the world. Even with these freedoms and opportunities, Ezra understands it can be very difficult to work out of a position of poverty and/or discrimination without significant help along the way. He believes growing net immigration is important for the long-term health of our economy and society and understands the widening wealth gap is not healthy or sustainable over the long term. His passions for Seattle Credit Union’s vision include financial education and strategic resources for empowering local communities.

 

Meet The AUDIT Committee

Our Audit Committee reviews the financial and operational audits of the credit union, and serves as the tellers of the annual election. The Audit Committee is available to review any questions or concerns regarding the safety and soundness of the credit union. For any comments or concerns about the soundness of the credit union or standard operational issues, please contact us by mailing the address below, or send us a message by clicking the button.

Seattle Credit Union
Attn: Audit Committee
P.O. Box 3992
Seattle, WA 98124

CONTACT THE AUDIT COMMITTEE

Sue Her

Sue Her

Chair

Deanna Clark

Deanna Clark

SECRETARY

Richard Leigh

Richard Leigh

Member

 

Richard Romero

Richard Romero

President/CEO

To Richard Romero, it’s all about personal prosperity for others. Over the several stops of his professional career⁠—which started as a part-time teller while attending college⁠—Richard came to realize that the best thing a financial institution could do is to help its customers achieve financial success.

Leadership and the ability to relate are essential to his work for Seattle Credit Union’s members. It was an old branch assistant manager who showed him a leader’s job is to teach and motivate. He believes his personal immigrant experience⁠—he was born in Peru and is fluent in Spanish⁠—gave him the ability to connect with any person on the other side of the counter or desk at each of his banking stops since 1988.

In the end, Richard says the best part of his job is providing financial services to everyone, especially those who may have been underserved by financial institutions or abused by alternative financial service providers. He’s proud he’s built a staff that agrees. This is why Seattle Credit Union members can escape the bad experiences they’ve had with check-cashing services, or high-interest used car loans, instead receiving the services they need to properly take their place in the American economy. From his perspective, leading Seattle Credit Union allows him to pay back his own success to the members and the community at large⁠—as CEO, and on the boards of the United Way of King County, the YWCA of King and Snohomish Counties, and Inclusiv, an industry organization focused on community-development credit unions.

Richard moved from California to Seattle to take this job. He loves the different life he found here⁠—calmer, and more focused on family (his son loves all sports and Richard practices archery with his daughter), focused less on impression and more on substance. He enjoys listening to music and spending time with his family. That’s one reward for his personal prosperity; his other is ensuring that Seattle Credit Union members find theirs.

Get in Touch with Richard

Mele Miller

Mele Miller

Chief Operating Officer

Best described as an authentic leader, financial equity advocate, and talent activator. Mele is a dynamic financial service executive & community engagement professional with 22 years of experience implementing successful growth & risk management strategies across Washington state. Mele is proud to serve Seattle Credit Union as a leader committed to protecting and improving the financial security of households and businesses that have not historically been supported by the financial services industry at-large.

When Mele first became a teller 22 years ago, she felt intimidated and discouraged by the banking industry and knew she was not alone. The journey from Teller to Executive was tough and included years of development as an Entrepreneur, Branch Manager, Business Banker, Commercial Banker, Wealth Management Advisor, and Community Development Director. In every role, she honored her commitment to changing the financial landscape for women and people of color.

Mele earned her BA in Studio Art and Mathematics from the University of Puget Sound (Tacoma, WA) and graduate degree from the Pacific Coast Banking School, a nationally acclaimed executive leadership and banking graduate program supported by the University of Washington - Foster School of Business. Mele graduated with honors from both programs and was recognized nationally with the publication of her research on the Affordable Housing Crisis in Seattle in 2019. Although Mele is originally from Oahu, Hawaii, she has made her home in Seattle since 1997. She is a wife and mother of three boys, ages 7, 9, and 11.

As a fierce advocate for young professionals, Mele has mentored girls through Big Brothers Big Sisters for 15 years and leads health and fitness education programs throughout the Seattle and South Sound community. She currently serves on the Leadership Council for the United Negro College Fund - Pacific Northwest, Board of Directors for Pacific Coast Banking School, and is a member of Seattle Credit Union’s Black Banker Network.

Get in Touch with Mele

Kelly Earnest

Kelly Earnest

Chief People Officer

Kelly has extensive experience in aligning people and business strategies while creating an inclusive culture where employees can grow their careers. She believes an environment that fosters trust and transparency creates a culture of engagement and high performance. Kelly leads all aspects of Human Resources, including talent management, recruitment, leadership development, training and education, compensation and benefits, payroll, and employee engagement and retention. Hiring and retaining employees with a strong connection to Seattle Credit Union’s mission and values is a top priority in ensuring that they can prosper and deliver the best experience for our members.

Prior to joining Seattle Credit Union, Kelly was the Head of Talent and Development for Oaktree Capital Management, where she lead global talent management, learning and development, performance management, diversity, equity and inclusion, and employee engagement and retention programs. Prior to joining Oaktree, she was the Head of Talent Strategy and Learning and Development for City National Bank, where she created their talent management program.

Kelly holds a Bachelor of Music degree from the University of Southern California. She enjoys music, the culinary arts, and is a proud Golden Circle member of Best Friends Animal Society and an advocate for animals.

Get in Touch with Kelly

Lee Pierce

Lee Pierce

Chief Lending Officer

Lee has spent almost three decades of his financial career with Seattle Credit Union. When Lee started back in 1994, the credit union was $171 million in assets and has now grown to over $1 billion in assets.

Lee has held various positions within the credit union during his career and when he transitioned into Lending, this is where he felt that he could make the greatest impact to the financial well-being of our members. With a strategic focus and innovative mindset, Lee has led various projects and initiatives throughout the organization. These initiatives include enhancing current lending product offerings and developing new “non-traditional” products in an effort to better serve our underserved communities. These efforts have assisted the credit union in achieving the Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) certification from the Department of Treasury.

Lee holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Management. He also serves as Vice President on the Board of Directors for the Washington Homeownership Resource Center (WHRC).

In his free time, he enjoys a wide array of outdoor activities that the Pacific Northwest has to offer from biking and hiking with his dogs in the Summer, to snowmobiling in the Winter.

Get in Touch with Lee

Seattle Credit Union Committees

Members from the Board of Directors, Audit Committee, and Executive Leadership team form several committees so they're able to focus on specific areas of our organization's operations and goals.

The Executive Committee

Carlos Ruiz, Chair
Deanna Clark
Rob Shuler
Joe Davila
Jonelle Johnson
Richard Romero, Staff Liaison

The Finance & Budget Committee

Rob Shuler, Chair
Rebecca Kerr
Nelson Reyneri
Shahzad Qadri
Joe Davila
Richard Romero, Staff Liaison

The Corporate Governance Committee

Shahzad Qadri
Jonelle Johnson
Rob Shuler
Nelson Reyneri
  

The Compensation Committee

Joe Davila, Chair
Deanna Clark
Rob Shuler
Rebecca Kerr
Carlos Ruiz
 

The Nomination & Election Committee

Jonelle Johnson, Chair
Rebecca Kerr
Nelson Reyneri
Joe Davila
Deanna Clark
Richard Romero, Staff Liaison

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