Saturday, December 29, 2012


Hurricane Sandy survivors know how important it is to be prepared for disasters.
This year, as you make your New Year’s resolutions, the Federal Emergency Management Agency urges you to have a disaster plan and integrate smartphones into it.
Here are some preparedness tips:>>RESOLVE TO BE READY IN 2013:

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Rallying around firefighter who lost his home!

Stoughton firefighter Jack Hussey has gotten messages from as far away as Argentina and Australia and from fire departments across the country since a blaze tore through his Abington house Friday, leaving him and his family with nothing.

The home is a total loss, so Hussey, his wife and daughter are staying with family, and it’s unclear whether they’ll be able to move back. The fire is still under investigation.

The Professional Fire Fighters of Massachusetts has established The Friends of Jack Hussey Fund at the Boston Fire Fighter’s Credit Union, 60 Hallet St., Dorchester, MA 02124.>>>>Rallying around <b>firefighter</b>:

2013 Watch: Gen Y in the Year Ahead

 In 2013, the question won’t be whether to work to attract Gen Y. It’ll be, how?

Faced with a rapidly growing population of tech-savvy young adults, credit unions will begin developing more niche products for this demographic. Simply having a Gen Y-geared checking product and a Facebook and Twitter account is no longer sufficient. To stand out from the crowd, credit unions will need to take on creative initiatives, such as launching a new incentive-packed program or hiring an ambassador to reach out to young folks in their communities.>>>>2013 Watch: Gen Y in the Year Ahead:

Monday, December 24, 2012

4 Firefighters Shot 2 killed in NY

The Secret List
4 West Webster FD Volunteer Firefighters responding to that house fire this morning were shot, with 2 being killed in the Line of Duty, leading to a shootout between a suspect and police in suburban Rochester. The shooter is now dead.

Mike Chiapperini, Webster NY Police Lieutenant and PIO, who was off duty, serving as a WW Volunteer Firefighter. Mike had just returned from Long Island after being deployed for Super Storm Sandy.

Tomasz Kaczowka, a 9-1-1 Dispatcher who was off duty serving as a WW Volunteer Firefighter.
BOTH INJURED FIREFIGHTERS: Theodore Scardino and Joseph Hofsetter,are in guarded condition with very significant injuries. Hofsetter was an off duty City of Rochester Firefighter. Cops say that one or more shooters fired at the Firefighters when they arrived shortly after 0530 at the fire near the Lake Ontario shore, just east of Rochester, in the Town of Webster, West Webster Fire District. The first Webster police officer who arrived exchanged gunfire with a shooter, 2 of the Firefighters arrived on the first due apparatus and 2 arrived by car.
INITIALLY: The West Webster Fire District received a report of a car and house on fire on Lake Road, on a narrow peninsula where Irondequoit Bay meets Lake Ontario. The fire started in one home and spread to two others and a car.

The Secret List 12-24-12 / 1257 Hours

Thursday, December 20, 2012

NCUA: Unlimited Share Insurance for Credit Unions Set to Expire at Year End
    The NCUA recently issued a Letter to Credit Unions regarding the scheduled expiration of two insurance coverage programs on December 31, 2012.
    The Temporary Corporate Credit Union Share Guarantee Program and the unlimited Share Insurance Fund coverage for non-interest-bearing transaction accounts will expire.
    On January 1, 2013, NCUA share insurance coverage on deposits in corporate credit unions and non-interest-bearing transaction accounts will be limited to the standard maximum share insurance amount of $250,000. The insurance coverage is currently unlimited.
    Credit unions should evaluate their uninsured corporate account holdings and perform appropriate due diligence for credit risk implications.

If you have any questions on how this may affect your credit union contact;
Vining Sparks a GOLD Sponsor of NCOFCU

Lee Chandler Senior Vice President
Office 800-786-1245, Cell 970-445-8410

Lee began his career in investments by joining Vining Sparks as a licensed representative in 1991.  Lee has worked extensively with credit unions, providing tools such as asset liability models, scenario cash flow models, as well as on-site board education.  He is a frequent speaker at credit union conferences and makes regular board appearances for many of his clients. He graduated from the University of Mississippi in 1988 with a degree in business.  Lee is based in Vining Sparks’ Breckenridge, Colorado office.  Vining Sparks is headquartered in Memphis, Tennessee, and has offices throughout the United States and an international office in London.  The firm has over 300 employees in cities across the United States.  It has over 4,400 active customers which include depository institutions, insurance companies, and money managers.  The firm also ranks in the top 20 underwriters of new U.S. Agency debt.  Member FINRA/SIPC.

Monday, December 17, 2012

At Worcester ceremony, firefighters to get awards for heroic efforts - Worcester Telegram & Gazette -

WORCESTER — Firefighters from Leominster, Fitchburg and Worcester will be honored at the Firefighter of the Year awards Tuesday in Mechanics Hall, and fallen Worcester Firefighter Jon D. Davies Sr. will be posthumously given a Medal of Honor.>>READ FULL STORY>>At Worcester ceremony, firefighters to get awards for heroic efforts - Worcester Telegram & Gazette -

Base Salaries Continue to Rise for CU CEOs; Men's Salaries Outpace Women's

The average base salary for all credit union CEOs increased in 2012 by an average of 6.62% from 6.54% last year, survey finds.>>Read More>>Base Salaries Continue to Rise for CU CEOs; Men's Salaries Outpace Women's:

Credit Unions Surpass Community Banks In Mobile Banking Battle | The Financial Brand: Marketing Insights for Banks & Credit Unions

“Credit unions took a big bite out of big banks in mobile banking this year.
If they continue in this direction, there is even more opportunity for them to take an even bigger
Read More>>>>>Credit Unions Surpass Community Banks In Mobile Banking Battle | The Financial Brand: Marketing Insights for Banks & Credit Unions

Saturday, December 15, 2012

12 Ratios Every Marketing Manager Should Know

In 2011, published a popular series of articles on key ratios for board members. In this series, we explore key ratios specifically for marketing managers.
Benchmarking performance relative to other credit unions and community banks helps educate personnel about their credit union’s business model and helps managers advance projects. Credit unions can track the metrics featured in this series for all credit unions nationwide using 5300 data. Comparing credit unions with similar business models, membership demographics, or geographic range lends credence to new marketing programs and helps measure success. Of course, well-rounded marketing plans also consider ratios outside of the metrics featured in this series and link marketing plans to the institution’s strategic objectives.

Read The Entire Series
12 Ratios Every Marketing Manager Should Know (part 1)
12 Ratios Every Marketing Manager Should Know (part 2)
12 Ratios Every Marketing Manager Should Know (part 3)
12 Ratios Every Marketing Manager Should Know (part 4)

Friday, December 14, 2012

The race to kill the plastic gift card

Startup Gyft, backed by Google Ventures, thinks it has the right formula for digital gift cards.

That idea animates San Francisco-based startup Gyft, an app that offers users the ability to buy and then give gift cards directly on their smartphones. Users can purchase gift cards from close to 150 vendors -- including Amazon, Nike and Old Navy -- and send them to any other user of the app. Having the card balance available on your phone, so goes the theory, is more convenient than physical cards....>Read More>The race to kill the plastic gift card:

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Avoid Full TSA Inspection at Airports (GOES)

I would like to share something with you. There is a program for flyer's to bypass the full TSA inspection at most major airports. This program approves you as a safe traveler which means you don’t have to stand in the long lines, (they usually have a separate lane) take off your shoes, belts, coats, show your liquids, remove your computers. This is great especially at the larger airports.  If you are traveling outside of the US you can bypass the full customs check-in and use a Kiosk to check-in instead of waiting in long lines to see a customs agent to re-enter the US.

This is a US Customs program called Global Entry System (GOES) and can be found at;   You first fill out the information on-line. They use this information to do a background check on you. If you pass they then send you a ID # which you use to make an appointment for an interview with a local customs agent who will take your fingerprints and picture then make the final decision to approve you or not.  There is a $100.00 fee for a multi year pass. They issue you a ID Card as well as mark you passport so you are identified.  You take the number that they issue you and give (enter) it into  your frequent flyer programs which then places a special code on your boarding pass to be used at check-in.   This whole process takes about a month.

This is an excellent program for travelers and I have been using it for over a year now and never an issues with TSA. (saves a lot of time at check-in)

Not all airports work the same and sometimes you still have to do all the strip down but you often bypass the long lines!

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Apps for IPad - Speakers/Presentations

As you know I am a APP Junkie and when I hear of new and interesting apps I like to share them with you. Nick Morgan is a world wide speaker/presenter and has recommended the following apps for IPads which I thought might be of use to some of you and your families.

Apps for iPad Speakers – Nick Morgan
What are the essential apps for iPad presenters? I compiled a list a year ago; it’s time for an update. And if you’re holiday shopping for that speaker in your life, and you want to give an iPad, this list will help you load up the gadget with the necessary speaker starter kit.
I love the iPad for presenting. I use it to create my notes, and then put them up on the comfort monitors in front of me but hidden from the audience. Or, if there are no monitors, then the iPad itself does the job, and allows me to keep an eye on the clock so that I end on time. I also use the iPad to show video. Readers of this blog will know that I’m not a big fan of slides, but I do show the occasional one, and it’s easy to do so from the iPad.
At an earlier stage in the presentation food chain, I use the iPad for research, note-taking, and collection of ideas, stories, video, and images for later use.
I love the iPad for presenting because it’s light to carry, fast, easy to use, and relatively crash-free. I’m nearly at the point where I’m leaving the computer at home, and taking the iPad plus keyboard instead. As soon as I get over wearing both belt and suspenders, I’ll travel computer-free.
So how about those apps? I’m an app junkie; I have over a hundred on my iPad, and I’m always swapping them out for shiny new ones when they come along. But here’s my current hit list. Caveat: Apps change daily. This is not a list for all time or even an exhaustive one right now. It’s just what is working for me today.
Prezi, Pages, Keynote
If you don’t know Prezi, it’s time you did. It’s slide presentation software, but much cooler than either Keynote or PowerPoint. Then, of course, there are the basics from Apple. Pages provides word processing for writing out notes, speeches, ideas, and so on. Keynote is for slides. But do give Prezi a try. Especially if you’re a slide-heavy presenter, this is the software for you.
Still a big favorite. I looked long and hard for this app and tried a bunch of others before I settled on Goodreader. Basically, it’s a way to store files on your iPad. What’s the big deal? You can easily store video, pdfs, slides, etc – and then play or view them with a click or two. With the right adaptor, you’re set to play video clips with the least muss and fuss I’ve found so far. And it’s real easy to move video files from computer to iPad with a drag and drop when your iPad is syncing. Evernote
My entire life is now stored on Evernote, and that includes the speeches. I use Evernote on my computer, my iPhone, and my iPad. It’s the single best note management system I’ve found. You can take pictures, notes – information in any form – and store it for future use in a presentation or simply in your preparation for a presentation. I use it to store ideas I run across – to ‘remember everything’ as the advert says.
There are lots of note-taking apps; this one is cool because you can hook it up to the projector via the iPad and write in real time. Voila – instant white board. It’s great for capturing audience feedback, ideas, and so on in a way that’s visible to the entire audience (assuming you have those giant screens on either side of the stage).
Office HD
This app is one of those combo apps that allows you to read or create a word processing file, or a slide deck, or a spreadsheet. I like it because it is easy to use and saves you real estate on your iPad, and it seems to coordinate more easily with my mail program than either Pages or Keynote does, so that I can edit documents or grab images and slides on the fly. I’ve often used it to make last-minute changes to speech notes and get them to the conference tech people or just to myself when I use the iPad as a note display device.
Great for moving large files around. And storing them in the cloud. I’m sure this one is familiar to just about everyone. Essential for dealing with large slide decks on the go.
Prompster Pro or Podium Pro
Good for speakers who need a teleprompter, Promspter Pro seems to work well and costs less than some of its rivals at $5. Beware the super cheap ones. Podium Pro is a dollar less (at $4) has a number of features like the ability to record your talk, color-code sections and other nifty things. I don’t have deep personal experience with these, but friends report that they both do the job.
Presentation Clock
A giant timer, plain and simple. Useful for making sure you don’t run over your time.
What’s your experience – what are your favorite apps for creating and giving presentations? What has worked well for you, and what has not gotten a passing grade?

Monday, December 10, 2012

Carriers Agree to Text to 9-1-1

All four nationwide wireless carriers ” AT&T, Verizon, Sprint Nextel and T-Mobile USA” yesterday committed to supporting text to 911 in their networks by May 15, 2014, with "major deployments" expected in 2013.Each of the four carriers signed the agreement with theNational Emergency Number Association (NENA) and theAssociation of Public-Safety Communications Officials(APCO) in a deal that was announced last night."Access to 911 must catch up with how consumers communicate in the 21st century” and today, we are one step closer towards that vital goal," FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski said in a statement....Read More...Carriers Agree to Text to 9-1-1

Half of Credit Unions Grapple With Little or No Growth: Print Preview

Many credit unions had a banner 2012 in member growth. But many didn't. This print preview from CU Times, next week's edition, explores that issue.

What are some of the reasons why the smaller credit unions are not growing their memberships? Glatt said one culprit could be visibility.
“You may have a branch that is locked down because it’s not in the community. Some of the smaller credit unions are beholden to a single sponsor,” Glatt said. “They likely didn’t have an interest in Bank Transfer Day and [former bank customers] are probably not the people that they’re attracting anyway.”
Then there are a fair number of credit unions that could care less about increasing their member bases, Glatt said. Instead, they choose to look at other ways to define their success such as through loan and decent deposit relationships. However, for the long term, that measurement could lead to failure.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

UK Scientists Plan to Study Firefighter Heart Attacks

Dr Nick Mills, the consultant cardiologist leading the research at Edinburgh Royal Infirmary, said: "The risk of having a heart attack whilst you're in service as a firefighter is highest during fire suppression activity, compared to any other ..
Scottish scientists plan to investigate why firefighters are more at risk from heart attacks than any other emergency service workers.
Statistics have shown that despite undergoing regular health and fitness checks, members of fire crews are more prone to suffer cardiac arrests - which kill thousands of Scots every year - than any other branch of the emergency servic

Editorial: Let credit unions make more business loans

Small businesses have a hard time getting loans they need to operate and expand, limiting their ability to create jobs. Credit unions have capital, but the amount they can loan to businesses is limited by law. There's a coupling waiting to be made here and Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) wants to be the matchmaker.

Her Small Business Lending Enhancement bill would raise the cap on the amount of a credit union's total assets that it can lend to businesses. Since the 1990s, that cap has been set by law at 12.25 percent. The bill would raise it to 27.5 percent. In the aftermath of Sandy, when many local businesses need help getting back on their feet, this reform is one Congress should embrace.
> Read Complete Story>Editorial: Let <b>credit unions</b> make more business loans:


Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Worcester, Mass. firefighters mark somber anniversary

“Surprising the years went by so quickly but we remember and we always will,” says Worcester Fire Chief Gerard Dio.... > View Video > Worcester, Mass. firefighters mark somber anniversary