Filene Research Institute looks back on work for credit unions as it turns 35

‘Our success is a testament to the collaborative spirit of our members and the dedication of our staff’

The USA’s Filene Research Institute for credit unions celebrates its 35th anniversary this month.

Launched in 1989, Filene has played a key role in shaping the country’s credit union landscape through research and incubation testing of new ideas and viable solutions.

”As we celebrate this significant milestone, we reflect on the journey that has brought us here and the future we are building together,“ said CEO Mark Meyer. “Our success is a testament to the collaborative spirit of our members and the dedication of our staff. I am humbled by the lasting impact we have made together in the financial lives of millions of people.”

Filene has produced 613 research reports in partnership with staff, researchers, fellows, university partners, authors and industry experts. Its first study, Field of Membership: An Evolving Concept, laid the foundations for the Credit Union Membership Access Act, which authorised credit unions to have multiple common bonds among their memberships.

It also runs the i3 programme, through which it developed 208 new ideas and concepts across 20 waves of more than 350 credit union innovators. This included exploring prize-linked savings in 2006, which in less than 10 years led to over US$70m saved by consumers who might not have saved it otherwise. The success of the concept influenced legislative changes in more than 30 US states.

Today Filene serves more than 71 million credit union members and represents more than $1.17tn in credit union assets.

”We are incredibly grateful for the support of our members and community over the years,” added Meyer. “Here’s to another 35 years of thinking forward and changing lives.”

To celebrate this milestone the Institute is holding an event at the Westin Copley Place, in Boston, the birthplace of Edward Filene, who played a key role in the emergence of credit unions in the United States in the early 1900s.

Filene Institute members and the wider US credit union community can register online to attend the event.