NextGen Leaders: Joshua Poole

Joshua Poole
Chief Lending Officer
$47 million BRECO FCU 
Baton Rouge, La.
Follow Joshua on Twitter 
Follow him on LinkedIn 
Watch Joshua’s CUES Next Top Credit Union Exec video

Give us the elevator speech about your project (as in how would you describe your project to someone you meet in an elevator?):
Give a man a fish, you feed him for a day … teach a man to fish, you feed him for a lifetime. We teach to empower and enlighten so individuals and families make better financial choices, to make that dream of homeownership, being debt free, or a college education a reality. We teach to change lives!

Online voters and a panel of past finalists narrowed the CUES Next Top Credit Union Exec field from 20 to the Top 15 applicants. The challenge, held in conjunction with DDJ Myers and administered by Currency, searches for emerging leaders age 35 and under from within the credit union industry.

The Top 15 will blog about their project.  And to provide additional value to the competition experience, they’ll each receive an executive coaching session from DDJ Myers, a CUES Supplier member and strategic provider. A judging panel of two CUES members and Deedee Myers of DDJ Myers will then score the Top 15’s applications and blog posts, narrowing the competition to five finalists.

The five finalists will receive additional coaching, airfare, accommodation and registration to CUES’ CEO/Executive Team Network™, Nov. 8-11 in Scottsdale, Ariz., where they will give their final presentations. The 2015 CUES Next Top Credit Union Exec will receive further coaching, airfare, accommodation and registration for two CUES’ CEO Institutes, a total prize package valued at $20,000

What is your long-term career goal?
My ultimate goal is to one day be a CEO of a financial institution. I wish to be the best leader I can be and inspire greatness in others, whether co-workers, our members, or the community at large. I want to be a force for positive change in teaching others that we can be whatever or whomever we desire.

Fill in the dots: The future of credit unions will be bright if ...
… as a movement, we always remember our roots. The idea of credit unions is this novel idea of “people helping people.” It is neighbor looking out for neighbor, a common bond of desiring a better life, and a community working together to realize that vision. No matter how large we may become, we must always strive to hold dear what made us great: people. As a movement, we must be on the cutting edge of technology, anticipating and innovating to meet the needs of tomorrow’s credit union member.

What my generation brings to the credit union movement is …
… a sense of passion for the possibilities of tomorrow. We thirst for knowledge and have a fire to contribute to a better world. We represent the next generation of credit union members, and as such understand the type of partnership we desire in our financial institution. For us, it’s about forging lasting relationships. This great passion fuels a sense of family, a family that struggles together to enhance this movement worldwide.

People consider me a leader because …
… I care for others. I strive to help them be the best version of themselves, to believe in who they are and what they can become.

Who is your hero and why?
Without question, my mother. In her early 30s, she became a single mother with no college education, no career, and five young children at home, one of whom was handicapped. Despite what may have seemed like impossible challenges, she earned her college degree, all while not only looking after her children, but working three jobs to make ends meet. Regardless of the numerous priorities that fell upon her, we knew we were her first. She instilled in us the idea that with hard work and a positive attitude, all things are possible.

Who is a must-follow on Twitter?
Mark Arnold @jmarkarnold 
Jordan Rumsey @JordanCUInsight 
Amanda Reed @AmandaCUInsight and
Arianna Huffington @ariannahuff.

You are guaranteed to get amazing ideas on everything credit union!

What is your favorite CUES member benefit? Or, if you are a new CUES NextGen member, what benefit are you most looking forward to using?
I thoroughly enjoy the links to numerous articles that develop me as a leader and credit union professional. I have also taken advantage of webinars that have served to enhance knowledge and expertise in the credit union movement. I also enjoy the numerous networking opportunities that CUES affords.

CUES Next Top Credit Union Exec team