POLISH & SLAVIC FEDERAL CREDIT UNION
BREEZES IN TO THE WINDY CITY
Country’s Largest Ethnic Credit Union Extends Reach To Chicago; Brooklyn-Based Credit Union Forges Ahead With Midwest Expansion
Continuing to defy the stagnation that has gripped the banking industry lately, the Polish & Slavic Federal Credit Union extended its reach to the Midwest by establishing its presence in the Chicago area, where on Jan. 30th it opened its first two branches in the city’s suburbs of Mt. Prospect and Norridge.
The Chicago expansion is the PSFCU’s latest salvo in its ambitious development program that has enabled the financial institution to reach almost $1.3 billion in assets and attract nearly 70,000 members. Of the credit union's 14 total branches, more than one-third (five) has opened up in the past two years.
The new branches will cater to the nearly 300,000 residents of Polish and Slavic descent living in the North-Central part of the metropolis, and it is expected that many of the 150,000 Polish-Americans from the southern Chicago area will also take advantage of the credit union’s services.
Given the state of concern surrounding many financial institutions today, it is refreshing – and reassuring – to see the smart and profitable growth of this dynamic credit union,” said Michael Fryzel, board member of the National Credit Union Administration, who was the guest of honor for the dual ribbon-cutting ceremonies. “I am confident that PSFCU will be as successful here as it is on the East Coast.”
The Brooklyn-based credit union has historically serviced members throughout the metropolitan New York region with 12 branches in New York and New Jersey. Additionally, the nation’s largest ethnic credit union makes its services available to members across the country via its online banking operations.
“Serving the Polish and Slavic community is what we’re all about,” said Ira Brief, interim Chief Executive Officer of the PSFCU. “Therefore, it’s only natural that we finally open for business in the great Polish-American cauldron of Chicago.”
In addition to the NCUA’s Mr. Fryzel, other dignitaries on hand for the ribbon-cutting ceremonies were members of the PSFCU Board of Directors, a representative from the Polish Consulate, local politicians, ethnic media and various Polish organizations. The actual grand opening ceremony took place in the Mt. Prospect branch, while the ribbon-cutting moment from Norridge was beamed in via a video connection.
“It took us more than a decade to cross the Hudson with our first branch in New Jersey, but over the past few years we have shown proof that our model works and that we are highly attractive to would-be members not only in Illinois, but other states as well,” said Krystyna Myssura, the Vice Chairwoman of the Board of Directors of the PSFCU. “What we’ve accomplished on the East Coast will certainly be replicated here in the heart of the Midwest.”
Each year, approximately 180 Polish-American organizations on the East Coast receive assistance from the PSFCU. Last year, almost $350,000 was awarded by the PSFCU as scholarships to 316 deserving students. As it enters the Chicago market, the credit union announced that local organizations will also benefit from the financial strength of the country’s largest ethnic credit union.