Credit union executives choose FIU to learn strategies for 2010 and beyond.

Last year’s financial crisis underscored the need for global participants to actively manage and insulate their institutions from unpredictable market forces. When executives from credit unions in the Caribbean wanted to learn more about these forces and incorporate protections against risks, they turned to the expertise of the College of Business Administration at Florida International University (FIU).

Front row, from left to right: Leslie Charles, Trinidad & Tobago Police Credit Union, Trinidad and Tobago; Devon Charles, Grenville Co-operative Credit Union, Grenada; Ertis Blake, C&WJ Employees Co-operative Credit Union, Jamaica; Murleene Davis, NAJ Co-operative Credit Union Limited, Jamaica; and Sheryl Bass, St Kitts Co-operative Credit Union, Saint Kitts and Nevis. Back row, from left to right: Kippling Charles, Grenada Public Service Credit Union, Grenada; Barb Kachelski, CUES; Desreen Marquis, NAJ Co-operative Credit Union Limited, Jamaica; Henry Bowman, Andrews Federal Credit Union, Maryland, USA; and Timothy Springer, Barbados Police Co-operative Credit Union Ltd, Barbados

“Several staff members from CUES, the Credit Union Executives Society, worked with the Office of Executive & Professional Education (EPE) to prepare the four-day “Strategic Leadership and Credit Union Management Program,” said Barb Kachelski, CUES senior vice president and chief operating officer. “Not only was the Miami location very convenient for our members but also it was less expensive for them to travel to Miami than to a location within the Caribbean. When we looked at the rankings of universities to consider in South Florida, and evaluated what they could offer, we selected FIU.”

Confidence proves well-placed.

“It was a very enriching experience which I highly recommend,” said Leslie Charles, treasurer of the Trinidad & Tobago Police Credit Union. “I have seen the need to ensure that the positioning strategy for my credit union is crystal clear and communicated effectively to our target audience.”

According to Rosangel Quintero, the event’s program manager, who, along with Robert Garcia (EMBA ’97), then director of EPE, facilitated the event, “Because FIU is a research institution, the information presented, targeted for the partner organization, was topical and extremely beneficial. Almost immediately, the people at CUES asked to schedule another education program for spring of 2011, which was quite an affirmation of the value of the offering.”

The executives received strategic and analytical information on a variety of important topics from faculty experts:

  • Joyce J. Elam, executive dean: “The Essence of Leadership”
  • William Schneper: “The Concept of Strategy, Strategy Analysis, Case Studies on Strategy”
  • Juan I. Sanchez: “Leading and Motivating Performance”
  • Aya Chacar: “Competitive Advantage, Strategy Implementation and Organizational Issues”
  • Krishnan Dandapani and Emmanuel Roussakis: “Financial Management” and “Financial Strategy of Credit Unions”
  • Irma Becerra Fernandez (PhD ’94): “Technology & Innovation” and “Knowledge Management”
  • Walfried Lassar: “Effective Market Segmentation in Financial Services”


  • Getting and Giving Feedback, ” August 2010 issue of the Credit Union Management newsletter.
  • “If you Were Going to Live on a Space Station for six Months …,”

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