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SDCCU adapts with changing times, lifestyles and technology

This coming January will mark 75 years of business for San Diego County Credit Union.

“In January 1938, San Diego County Employees Credit Union opened its doors on the principal that people come first and profits second,” said Teresa Halleck, president and CEO in an email.

In 1973, it changed its name to the San Diego County Credit Union and expanded from only allowing employees of the county to join to allow all those who lived or worked in San Diego County, according to Halleck.

By 1960, the credit union grew from $100,000 in assets to $2.5 million. The credit union’s assets doubled in size between 1969 and 1973, surpassing $50 million in 1978. Today, the bank has assets of $5.7 billion.

“SDCCU has grown considerably from the humble roots of a small credit union to the 10th largest in the United States,” Halleck said.

The credit union has 28 branch locations in San Diego, Riverside and Orange counties and is headquartered in Sorrento Valley. It has more than 238,000 members.

“Unlike most financial institutions, SDCCU does not issue stock or pay dividends to outside stockholders,” Halleck said. “Instead, earnings are returned to customers in the form of outstanding customer service and convenience coupled with loan rates, higher dividends on deposits and lower fees — in some instances, no fees at all.”

San Diego County Credit Union was founded in the late 1930s with modest beginnings, but is now the largest locally owned financial institution in San Diego. Photo courtesy of San Diego County Credit Union

SDCCU provides products that meet the demands of today’s lifestyle, Halleck said, which includes mobile banking services.

“SDCCU became the first locally based financial institution in San Diego to introduce SDCCU Mobile Deposit in December 2011,” Halleck said. “SDCCU’s mobile technologies not only provide convenience for customers to bank on the go, its banking platforms have transformed the way in which people shop, transact and manage their personal and household finances.”

SDCCU is a not-for-profit organization and is a long-time supporter of more than 75 local nonprofit organizations, Halleck said. Those organizations include: Rady Children’s Hospital, National Multiple Sclerosis Society, San Diego Blood Bank and Scripps Hospital Foundation.

In August, the credit union announced a new logo for its brand — “San Diego County Credit Union — It’s Not Big Bank Banking. It’s Better,” according to its website.

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