Leadership in Co-operative Governance Award 2009
June 17, 2009, Ottawa, Ontario - Assiniboine Credit Union is the winner of the 2009 Leadership in Co-operative Governance Award, presented by the Canadian Co-operative Association (CCA) to honour co-operatives and credit unions that demonstrate excellence in board governance. The award was presented to the chair of Assiniboine’s Board of Directors, Garry Loewen, at CCA’s National Congress in Ottawa.
With more than $2.4 billion in assets and over 100,000 members, Assiniboine is the ninth largest credit union in Canada. Based in Winnipeg, ACU has 25 branches in all areas of the city as well as in Thompson and Gillam in northern Manitoba.
Assiniboine was chosen by an adjudication committee consisting of Debra Brown, President and CEO of Brown Governance; Andy Poprawa, President and CEO of the Deposit Insurance Corporation of Ontario and current chair of the International Credit Union Regulators Network; and former CCA President Bill Turner.
In choosing Assiniboine for the award, the adjudicators commended the credit union’s board for committing Assiniboine to “becoming a learning organization.” They praised Assiniboine’s commitment to excellence in governance as one of the organization’s strategic goals to support its vision of being the financial co-operative of choice. It was also noted that “the board was committed to transparency in terms of policies and practices with a robust approach to disclosure within its annual reporting framework.” Finally, the committee cited Assiniboine’s process for choosing board members, “a process that proactively attempts to balance members’ rights to stand for election to the board and ensuring that the board is composed of competent people representative of a diverse membership.”
“After the hard work our organization has put into our governance work these past few years, it is very affirming to be recognized for what we have accomplished,” said Chair Garry Loewen after receiving the award on behalf of the Assiniboine Board. “It is particularly affirming to be recognized by the lead organization for the co-operative movement – a movement whose principles we strive constantly to embody and uphold.”
In presenting the award to Assiniboine, Jill Kelly, chair of CCA’s Governance Committee, noted the importance of governance in the co-operative sector.
“This award was created because we recognize that good governance and leadership are decisive factors in the effectiveness and economic performance of co-operatives and credit unions,” she said. “CCA has made a concerted effort to foster co-operatives and credit unions that are well-governed, well-managed, economically sustainable and firmly focused on the delivery of benefits to their members and the communities in which they operate.”