Applicant 21: Emma Smalley

Emma Smalley is a 28-year-old Financial Counselor at Boulevard Federal Credit Union ($30M) in Amherst, New York.

Synopsis: Using the skills and passion acquired during my current employment with Boulevard FCU, I am leading a steering committee of young and talented people from a number of non-profits and community groups in organizing a new credit union in an underserved area of Buffalo New York. Our proposed credit union will focus on serving the growing international refugee population and providing support to the small business owners in the Grant Street commercial district. As a CCUFC, financial education is important to me and will be a component of every product and service we provide. We plan to make credit available to non-prime borrowers as an alternative to the “rent to own” stores and “buy here, pay here” auto dealers prevalent in the area we plan to serve. We are committed to being a real community partner, and our group is working hard to bring this proposed credit union to life. 

Even while credit unions are growing in terms of membership, the number of credit unions is shrinking. It is important for us as an industry to keep our numbers strong and show that we are still a relevant and growing movement. It is my hope that by succeeding in forming this new credit union I will not only be able to make an impact in my community, but to also serve as an example of how credit unions as a whole can continue to grow and form new relationships with their communities.

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