Speakers

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Tony Ferris

Tony Ferris, Chief Executive Officer

Rochdale Paragon Group & apogee iQ™

Have you ever uttered the phrase, ‘hindsight is 20/20’ in response to an unexpected result within your work? As a financial industry consulting expert, Tony Ferris enjoys guiding C-Suite professionals to identify the unseen, implement the difficult, and create sustainable solutions to maximize results. His clients describe him as a “revolutionist.” They appreciate that unlike other consultants, he doesn’t just offer ideas but honest (often hard to hear) truths and solutions by truly partnering with leaders and organizations alike to bring about positive disruption in the status quo, creating opportunities for competitive advantage, rather than merely reacting to what others in the industry are doing.

 

Blending over 20 years of experience working with financial institutions and his natural change-embracing skills, Tony helps leaders truly evolve in the way they think, strategize, and govern. To that end, Tony and the Rochdale Paragon Group has led the charge on defining the business processes around governance, risk and assurance disciplines to formalize how organizations make better decisions and focus on the critical tasks. The Rochdale Paragon Group provides the culture and framework to both preserve and create organizational value by de-biasing decisions, delivering focus on the most important opportunities and obstacles, and assuring compliance while minimizing administrative expense.

Jeff Owen

Jeff Owen, Chief Operations Officer

Rochdale Paragon Group
Chief Sales Officer, apogee iQ™

Jeff has worked at The Rochdale Group (Rochdale) since 2006. He has over 17 years of experience in the financial services arena. Prior to Rochdale, Jeff worked at the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City (FRB) where he participated in and led many district and system-wide initiatives in a variety of administrative and operational areas. Jeff currently leads and participates in various client engagements, including strategic planning, enterprise risk management implementation and support and merger-related projects. Jeff’s broad-based experience, analytical focus and passion for credit unions allow him to bring significant value to those he works with.

 

Jeff received a Bachelor of Science degree in both Management and Marketing, as well as a Master of Business Administration degree from Northwest Missouri State University.

James L. This

James L. This, PhD, President

James L. This and Associates

James This is a nationally recognized consultant, facilitator and trainer in the areas of strategic planning, leadership development, interpersonal communication and marketing. Jim is one of the principals of James L. This and Associates. He is probably best known as a founding partner of The Paragon Group – one of the most respected consulting firms in the credit union industry. Through these companies, Jim has helped credit unions for over twenty-five years.

 

Jim’s specialties include strategic planning, executive recruitment, leadership development and executive assessment. He is a frequent speaker at industry conferences and schools and one of the creators of the Volunteer Leadership Institute. The Institute is the premiere source of continuing education for credit union volunteers.

 

Jim earned his BA from Wake Forest University and his Ph.D. from the University of Southern California. He holds the title of Senior Professional in Human Resources from the Society for Human Resource Management.

 

Jim’s career has found him in three arenas—financial services, teaching and management consulting. During his long association with the Washington State Employees Credit Union he held key positions as Marketing Manager and Executive Vice President. He has taught at the University of Southern California, the University of Texas, Permian Basin, St. Martin’s College, South Puget Sound Community College and The Evergreen State College.

 

Jim is an avid golfer and proud grandfather.

Rudy Hanley

Rudy Hanley, President & CEO - Retired

SchoolsFirst Federal Credit Union

Rudy Hanley retired from SchoolsFirst Federal Credit Union, formerly known as Orange County Teachers Federal Credit Union, where he served for over 31 years as President and CEO. At the time of his retirement, the credit union had grown from $150 million to over $10 billion in assets, served over 600,000 Members, 44 branch locations, and served as third party administrator for school retirement plans for more than 160 school districts in Southern California.

 

Prior to joining SchoolsFirst FCU in 1982, Mr. Hanley worked for the California Credit Union League (CCUL) and the Washington, D.C. office of the Credit Union National Association (CUNA).

 

A graduate of the University of California, Irvine, Mr. Hanley has a bachelor’s degree in mathematics and a teaching credential. He obtained his juris doctorate from Western States University, College of Law. Mr. Hanley is a member of and has served on numerous boards and committees. He has written many articles and is a frequent speaker at conferences and seminars.

Lucy Ito

Lucy Ito, President & CEO

National Association of State Credit Union Supervisors

Lucy Ito is president and CEO of the National Association of State Credit Union Supervisors (NASCUS)—the voice for the state credit union system. NASCUS fosters a unique working collaboration between state credit union regulators and credit union practitioners. NASCUS advocates for a robust dual charter credit union system that mutually and equitably benefits both state and federally chartered credit unions. Ultimately, NASCUS works to advance the personal finance interests of American families and businesses by not only maintaining the safety and soundness of credit unions but by also preserving credit unions as a competitive option for consumers and enabling credit unions to respond to state and community needs.

 

Ms. Ito previously served as executive vice president and chief operations officer of the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues (CCUL/NCUL). She also formerly served as senior vice president of the World Council of Credit Unions (WOCCU), where she worked on technical programs and legislative and regulatory issues primarily in Central and Eastern Europe, Asia and the Pacific.

 

Ms. Ito earned a B.A. in economics and Asian studies from the University of California-Berkeley and an M.A. in linguistics from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Her post-graduate work includes research as a Regents’ Fellow at the University of California-Santa Cruz and she is a graduate of the CUES Advanced Leadership Institute at Harvard Business School.

Andrew Downin

Andrew Downin, VP Marketing and Communications

Vantage West Credit Union

Andrew is passionate about uncovering insights into the minds of consumers and helping credit unions meet consumer needs through effective product design and promotion. His perspectives on consumer finance have been featured in publications including The New York Times, Credit Union Magazine, and Credit Union Times. Andrew received his undergraduate degree in accounting from the University of Arizona and his MBA from Pepperdine University where he graduated first in his class. He is also a certified public accountant.



Willard Rance

Willard Rance, Vice President, Community Relations

Washington State Employees Credit Union

Will Rance is Vice President of Community Relations for WSECU, Washington State Employees Credit Union. Will has served in the financial services industry for over forty-one years and has been with WSECU for thirty-four years. The Community Relations department spearheads the community outreach efforts for WSECU, serving communities in the areas of Self Sufficiency, Education and Public Employees.

 

In 2017 the WSECU Community Relations department conducted adult workshops that reached over 3,000 adults and over 3,500 students through workshops. WSECU’s Physical Reality Fairs reached over 600 students and the digital version had 18,000 people complete the program and finally over 600 students participated in the Lock Box Challenge.

 

Will serves on the Washington Jump$tart Board, and several committees such as South Sound Council, African American Credit Union Coalition/Internship Committee and Lifesmarts. Will was selected as one of eight Washington State residents to participate and represent Washington State in First Lady Michelle Obama’s Reach Higher Initiative.

Dennis Tanimoto

Dennis Tanimoto, President & CEO

Hawaii Credit Union League

Dennis Tanimoto has been president/CEO of Hawaii Credit Union League and its wholly-owned subsidiary, HCU Services Corporation, since July 1992. Prior to joining the League, he was an officer at two community banks in Hawaii for a combined total of 20 years.

 

At the League, Dennis is actively involved in advocating on legislative and regulatory matters to create a favorable environment for credit unions, educating credit union volunteers and management about topical issues facing the credit union movement, facilitating credit union strategic planning sessions, conducting research on the financial performance of Hawaii’s credit unions, and assisting credit unions in regulatory compliance. He is also involved in public advocacy to raise awareness of credit unions and what differentiates not-for-profit credit unions from for-profit financial service providers.

 

Dennis is one of five executives in Hawaii who holds the Certified Association Executive (CAE) professional designation conferred by the American Society of Association Executives. He received his bachelor of business administration and master of business administration degrees from the University of Hawaii, and is a life member of Beta Gamma Sigma national honor society. A graduate of the Pacific Coast Banking School at the University of Washington, he also earned all three certificates then awarded by the American Institute of Banking.

 

Active in industry and association affairs, Dennis has represented the League as a volunteer in several nonprofit organizations. He is also a board or committee member of numerous community development and charitable organizations, including:

 

He lives in Honolulu with his wife, Dale. They have two adult children and five grandchildren.

James L. This

James L. This, PhD, President

James L. This and Associates

James This is a nationally recognized consultant, facilitator and trainer in the areas of strategic planning, leadership development, interpersonal communication and marketing. Jim is one of the principals of James L. This and Associates. He is probably best known as a founding partner of The Paragon Group – one of the most respected consulting firms in the credit union industry. Through these companies, Jim has helped credit unions for over twenty-five years.

 

Jim’s specialties include strategic planning, executive recruitment, leadership development and executive assessment. He is a frequent speaker at industry conferences and schools and one of the creators of the Volunteer Leadership Institute. The Institute is the premiere source of continuing education for credit union volunteers.

 

Jim earned his BA from Wake Forest University and his Ph.D. from the University of Southern California. He holds the title of Senior Professional in Human Resources from the Society for Human Resource Management.

 

Jim’s career has found him in three arenas—financial services, teaching and management consulting. During his long association with the Washington State Employees Credit Union he held key positions as Marketing Manager and Executive Vice President. He has taught at the University of Southern California, the University of Texas, Permian Basin, St. Martin’s College, South Puget Sound Community College and The Evergreen State College.

 

Jim is an avid golfer and proud grandfather.

Gordon J. Dobner

Gordon J. Dobner, CPA, Partner

BKD, LLP-CPAs & Advisors

Gordon is a member of BKD National Financial Services Group. He has more than 14 years of experience providing audit and assurance services to public and nonpublic financial institution clients. Gordon’s experience includes audits of financial statements and internal controls over financial reporting as well assisting in regulatory filings.

 

He also provides various consulting services. His experience includes assisting with implementation of management’s assessments on internal control under Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation Improvement Act of 1991 (FDICIA), performing outsourced and co-sourced internal audit functions including developing internal audit operational risk assessments and internal audit plans and programs, trust audits, allowance for loan and lease losses methodology reviews and the handling of day-to-day inquiries regarding accounting and strategic issues. He leads the firm’s current expected credit loss (CECL) committee and has been involved in consulting with institutions on education and implementation considerations related to CECL.

 

Gordon is a member of the American Institute of CPAs and Texas Society of Certified Public Accountants. He actively participates in the Texas Bankers Association and Independent Bankers Association of Texas.

 

He is a graduate of Eastern Illinois University, Charleston, with a B.S. degree in accounting.

Sherri Davidoff

Sherri Davidoff, CEO

LMG Security

Sherri Davidoff is the CEO of LMG Security and the co-author of "Network Forensics: Tracking Hackers Through Cyberspace" (Prentice Hall, 2012). She has sixteen years of experience as a cyber security professional, specializing in digital forensics, penetration testing and security awareness training. Sherri has authored courses for the SANS Institute and Black Hat, and conducted security training for the American Bar Association, Department of Defense, Google, Comcast, Los Alamos National Laboratories, and many others. She is a faculty member at the Pacific Coast Banking School, where she teaches cybersecurity classes. Sherri is a GIAC-certified forensic examiner (GCFA) and penetration tester (GPEN), and holds her degree in Computer Science and Electrical Engineering from MIT.

James L. This

James L. This, PhD, President

James L. This and Associates

James This is a nationally recognized consultant, facilitator and trainer in the areas of strategic planning, leadership development, interpersonal communication and marketing. Jim is one of the principals of James L. This and Associates. He is probably best known as a founding partner of The Paragon Group – one of the most respected consulting firms in the credit union industry. Through these companies, Jim has helped credit unions for over twenty-five years.

 

Jim’s specialties include strategic planning, executive recruitment, leadership development and executive assessment. He is a frequent speaker at industry conferences and schools and one of the creators of the Volunteer Leadership Institute. The Institute is the premiere source of continuing education for credit union volunteers.

 

Jim earned his BA from Wake Forest University and his Ph.D. from the University of Southern California. He holds the title of Senior Professional in Human Resources from the Society for Human Resource Management.

 

Jim’s career has found him in three arenas—financial services, teaching and management consulting. During his long association with the Washington State Employees Credit Union he held key positions as Marketing Manager and Executive Vice President. He has taught at the University of Southern California, the University of Texas, Permian Basin, St. Martin’s College, South Puget Sound Community College and The Evergreen State College.

 

Jim is an avid golfer and proud grandfather.

Dennis Tanimoto

Dennis Tanimoto, President & CEO

Hawaii Credit Union League

Dennis Tanimoto has been president/CEO of Hawaii Credit Union League and its wholly-owned subsidiary, HCU Services Corporation, since July 1992. Prior to joining the League, he was an officer at two community banks in Hawaii for a combined total of 20 years.

 

At the League, Dennis is actively involved in advocating on legislative and regulatory matters to create a favorable environment for credit unions, educating credit union volunteers and management about topical issues facing the credit union movement, facilitating credit union strategic planning sessions, conducting research on the financial performance of Hawaii’s credit unions, and assisting credit unions in regulatory compliance. He is also involved in public advocacy to raise awareness of credit unions and what differentiates not-for-profit credit unions from for-profit financial service providers.

 

Dennis is one of five executives in Hawaii who holds the Certified Association Executive (CAE) professional designation conferred by the American Society of Association Executives. He received his bachelor of business administration and master of business administration degrees from the University of Hawaii, and is a life member of Beta Gamma Sigma national honor society. A graduate of the Pacific Coast Banking School at the University of Washington, he also earned all three certificates then awarded by the American Institute of Banking.

 

Active in industry and association affairs, Dennis has represented the League as a volunteer in several nonprofit organizations. He is also a board or committee member of numerous community development and charitable organizations, including:

 

He lives in Honolulu with his wife, Dale. They have two adult children and five grandchildren.

Byron Gangnes

Byron Gangnes, Professor of Economics

University of Hawaii at Manoa

Byron Gangnes is Professor of Economics at the University of Hawaii at Manoa, and Senior Research Fellow with UHERO. He specializes in international macroeconomics and forecasting and is also a leading authority on the economy of Hawaii.

 

Byron earned his Bachelor’s degree from the University of Puget Sound and a Doctorate from the University of Pennsylvania. He has held visiting appointments at a number of prestigious institutions and is an affiliated researcher with Project LINK, the United Nations macroeconomic forecasting program.

 

He has written extensively on economic policy issues affecting the U.S. and Asian economies. Recent articles study the impact of aging on global patterns of trade and finance, the effectiveness of US economic stimulus programs, and the implications of global value chain production arrangements.

 

For his numerous outreach activities, Byron was awarded the Hung Wo and Elizabeth Lau Ching Award for Faculty Service to the Community. He is the recipient of a College of Social Sciences Excellence in Teaching Award, and is an alumni member of Phi Beta Kappa. He has served as Chairman of the Board of Directors of St. Francis School, Honolulu.

 

Byron and his wife, Hilary, live in Honolulu. They have two adult daughters living on the U.S. mainland.

Michael Bell

Michael Bell, Partner

Howard & Howard, Attorneys at Law

Mr. Bell concentrates his practice in the areas of mergers and acquisitions, strategic planning, class action defense strategies, business law and real estate. Mr. Bell represents financial institutions throughout the United States and has completed over 30 M & A transactions in the past 5 years. Mr. Bell additionally advises financial institutions regarding all regulatory matters with state and federal regulators. Mr. Bell has created new mechanisms for financial institutions to invest capital and grow.

 

In 2011, Mr. Bell completed the first ever purchase of a bank by a credit union. In 2012, he completed the first ever purchase of a stock owned bank by a credit union. In 2013, he completed the first ever purchase of a bank by a state chartered credit union. Mr. Bell continued advising credit unions in this area and has completed all but two credit union purchases of a banks. Recently he has helped credit unions acquire other businesses including real estate brokerages, mortgage originators and specialized lenders. Mr. Bell has become the nationwide leader and the “go-to” legal adviser in this area.

Maria J. Martinez

Maria J. Martinez

President & CEO, Border Federal Credit Union

Maria J. Martinez is the President/CEO of Border Federal Credit Union (BFCU), headquartered in Del Rio, TX and serving 13 Texas counties. Maria has made local, state, national and international presentations on diverse credit union topics. Maria has a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration and has been in the credit union industry for over 29 years, 21 of those as BFCU’s President/CEO. She is a member of the CUNA Board of Directors; Member of the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas Community Depository Institutions Advisory Council; the Co-Chairman of the Network of Latino Credit Unions & Professionals (NLCUP) Association; served a 2-year term as an appointed member of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s Credit Union Advisory Council and serves in many other boards and committees.

 

Among the recognitions Maria has received for her professional accomplishments, community contributions and leadership are the 2016 Cornerstone Credit Union League Professional of the Year Award and the 2017 Herb Wegner Memorial Award for Outstanding Individual Achievement. Under Maria’s leadership, BFCU expanded its field of membership from 3 to 13 Texas counties; obtained the Community Development Financial Institution Certification for BFCU; implemented a free home/financial counseling program available to members, military personnel and non-members; offers free income tax preparation to low income tax payers through the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program; targets youth through programs such as an annual youth fair and an annual youth financial summer conference and has engaged in many other community partnerships.

Mark Mayfield

Mark Mayfield

Mark has one of the most diversified backgrounds in the speaking industry having owned and operated several businesses ranging from livestock production to nightclubs to golf instruction, and also spent ten years as a lobbyist in Washington, D.C. and in thirteen state legislatures for a Fortune 500 company. That business experience combined with his work as a nightclub performer allowed him to create truly unique presentations. His tagline is simple: Solid Business Wisdom in a Brilliant Comedic Style. He is one of the rare individuals in the world who is equally adept at performing comedy shows or high content speeches.

 

Mark is author of several business books and two joke books including his latest “Morph”, a guide to accepting and managing change, and has spoken to a “Who’s Who” list of corporations, conventions, and trade associations over the past four decades. He was raised on a farm, received two degrees magna cum laude from Kansas State University, and taught school before he began his lobbying, business, and speaking career. He has received the CSP designation from the National Speakers Association and been inducted into their Hall of Fame.

 

He is happily married (although his wife is not) and is the proud father of two daughters. He is also the most annoying Grandpa on the planet.

 

Mark’s philosophy is simple...

 

Say it with humor and people will take the message home.