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Innovation Lab Think Tank Members Announced, Meets For First Time

Friday, August 09, 2013   (1 Comments)
Posted by: Leah Redding
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Garth Strand, Hutchinson
Credit Union, Adrienne Basham, Central Star Credit Union partner during the Innovation Lab interactive session

Jenny Boyd, TECU Credit Union and
Kim Wheelock, Mid American
Credit Union work together at the Innovation Lab's Think Tank's first meeting
It’s not surprising that the Kansas Credit Union Association’s Innovation Lab Think Tank team imagined using technology to better serve their members. After all, more and more organizations are turning to technological advances to increase efficiencies, provide more conveniences and grow end-user satisfaction.

Members of the Innovation Lab Think Tank range from Gen Y who serve as financial counselors and marketing staff to seasoned CEOs. The team is almost evenly divided male and female, and members represent credit unions ranging in asset size from $53 million to more than $800 million.

"In order to foster open innovation and explore the full spectrum of creativity, we assembled a diverse Think Tank team,” said Melissa Baptista, Research and Development Director of the Kansas Credit Union Association. "The younger demographics’ enthusiasm is contagious, and their ability to see projects from another perspective is just as important as the experiences and insights brought to the table by our veteran credit union leaders.”

The members of the newly formed Think Tank team are:
  • Michael Augustine, Vice President of Lending, Frontier Community Credit Union, Leavenworth, KS
  • Gary Austin, Vice President Operations & Payment Systems, Credit Union of America, Wichita, KS
  • Adrienne Basham, Business Development/Financial Counselor, Central Star Credit Union, Wichita, KS
  • Jenny Boyd, Marketing, TECU Credit Union, Wichita, KS
  • Chuck Bullock, President, TECU Credit Union, Wichita, KS
  • Vickie Hurt, President, Quest Credit Union, Topeka, KS
  • LaRae Kraemer, President, Kansas State University Federal Credit Union, Manhattan, KS
  • Garth Strand, President, Hutchinson Credit Union, Hutchinson, KS
  • Geoff Strole, Mortgage Development Officer, Truity Credit Union, Lawrence, KS
  • Lisa Traphagan, VP Branch Development, Quest Credit Union, Topeka, KS
  • Ginger Wehner, Regional Vice President, Truity Credit Union, Lawrence, KS
  • Kim Wheelock, Information Service Manager, Mid American Credit Union, Wichita, KS
  • Lee Williams, CEO, Central Star Credit Union, Wichita, KS
  • Corey Winter, Branch Manager, Meritrust Credit Union, Wichita, KS

This was the first meeting of the newly-formed Think Tank. The group met in Lawrence for a creative brainstorming session facilitated by KCUA staff and Matt McClorey, Chief Operating Officer of CritiTech, Inc., and former President of the Bioscience & Technology Business Center at the University of Kansas. McClorey brought an entrepreneurial spirit to the group, and an outside perspective to innovation. He inspired the group to think differently about credit unions and the financial industry.

During the creative session, the Think Tank divided into two groups. Each group was asked to come up with projects or ideas that would further the Kansas credit union industry and provide value to the state’s 630,000 credit union members. The ideas will be presented to the KCUA and SFS Board of Directors in September. If the Boards approve the ideas or projects, they will be given to the Dream to Destination team for implementation.

The Innovation and Implementation Lab was created to encourage continuous curiosity to generate revolutionary ideas to serve Kansas credit unions and their members.


Melissa Baptista says...
Posted Monday, August 12, 2013
We had an awesome group and came away with some great ideas. Everyone stay tuned for information on the projects that will be coming out of the Think Tank!