CEO Success Stories

Lives Change. Live Well.

Carla Altepetr

When a CEO with professional grace and integrity assumes the leadership of an already strong credit union, the members and staff benefit amazingly. This is what has been occurring since Carla Altepeter became CEO of Numerica Credit Union in Spokane, Washington in 2011.

Says Carla, “Spokane and Eastern Washington are places where credit unions are trusted and strong. And Numerica has a long history of growth and exceptional operational efficiency. When I arrived, the leadership team quickly realized that the more we integrated our culture and work processes with our strategic vision, the stronger we would be. We have been striving to align the voice of our team with the best interests of our members.”

Numerica has grown, and Carla credits a strong team at all levels, strategic alignment, excellent project management, and organizational transparency (all supported by Cardwell Group’s Connections Online). “We work on measurable objectives that affect service, capital, growth and efficiency. We form cross-functional teams that are empowered and accountable. Through the Connections system we continuously monitor performance and outcomes, and those outcomes are transparent to the entire Numerica team. It gives all of us satisfaction personally and professionally to see the measurable results of our work and the effect on our members, our team and our communities.”

Carla has also emphasized continuous learning and quality improvement. “We learn from each other. We keep learning by looking outward and inward with “big-picture” perspectives during our leadership dialogs.”

While culture and member experience are paramount, operational efficiency and quality have not been compromised, even slightly. Carla explains, “We have developed a comprehensive Corporate Risk function, including a robust enterprise risk component. We view it as both a strategic and management imperative. As we consider our processes, products, and services, we use enterprise risk tools to help us gain operational effectiveness and minimize risk.”

Numerica’s core purpose is “Enhancing Lives, Fulfilling Dreams and Building Communities.” “We strive to live our core purpose in everything that we do,” says Carla. “For example, we are proud of the fact that 4% of our earnings go back to the communities that we serve. We are encouraged by the fact that our Net Promoter Scores are in the 80’s. And we reward our internal stars and report their good work to all.”

“Our ultimate goal,” says Carla, “is to take the very best of Numerica and make it part of standard operations, so that we do that every time, every day. We have come to understand that our primary mission is to help reduce the stress associated with managing one’s finances and provide comprehensive financial education to help our members enhance their lives and realize their dreams. Our experience tells us that people need to be able to dream in financial terms, too. We see it as our mission to help realistic financial dreams become reality. Lives change, and we want to be there for our members during every twist and turn – to help our members live well every step of the way.”

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