The Summit FCU is celebrating its 80th year in operation. Founded in Rochester in 1941 as the credit union for employees of the Rochester Telephone Company, The Summit grew to encompass more member groups over subsequent decades. A contest in 1983 gave the credit union its current name.
The Summit expanded into areas outside of Rochester, and currently serves members in Western New York, the Rochester area, Central New York, Seneca Falls and Cortland. The Summit is one of approximately 14% of billion-dollar credit unions nationwide that are led by a woman — Laurie Baker is The Summit’s president/CEO.
“What’s really unusual is that The Summit has been a credit union from the start eight decades ago,” said Cheryl Pohlman, VP of marketing and community relations. “We didn’t begin as a bank, so the credit union philosophy of ‘people helping people’ is deep in our DNA.”
Recent developments at The Summit FCU include new digital spend accounts geared toward students and young adults. And earlier this month, The Summit FCU launched its virtual branch, an innovation that replicates the face-to-face assistance people get at a branch on a mobile phone or other electronic device. It’s built to accommodate on-the-go members who nonetheless need or want to get help from a real person.