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VACU Receives Top National Awards for Financial Education

VACU Financial Education receives award

Virginia Credit Union (VACU) caps 2023 with four prestigious awards for its Financial Education programs – two each at the national and state levels. The Credit Union National Association (CUNA) awarded the Desjardins Adult and Youth Financial Education Awards to VACU. It was named first-place winner for adult education and second-place for youth education. This follows similar recognition at the state level from Virginia Credit Union League. This awards program recognizes leadership within the credit union movement, honoring credit unions, chapters, and leagues for their commitment to both youth and adult financial literacy.

“Congratulations to this year’s winners for the exemplary work done for their communities and the members they serve. These leaders have made it their mission as credit union advocates to promote financial well-being,” said CUNA President/CEO Jim Nussle.

Desjardins Adult Financial Education Award ($1 billion-plus asset category)
CUNA 1st Place VACUL 2nd Place
In partnership with Virginia Commonwealth University, the credit union created an endowed Virginia Credit Union Financial Success Center at VCU. This center supports new and expanded programming to ensure that the VCU community of students, faculty, and alumni are financially healthy. Last year, the center reached more than 7,700 students, faculty, and alumni with financial education programs.

Desjardins Youth Financial Education Award ($1 billion-plus asset category)
CUNA 2nd Place and VACUL 1st Place
In a commitment to focus on financial education for young people in 2022, VACU’s financial education team conducted 330 presentations to students in grades PreK-12, reaching more than 20,000 students aged 18 and under in area schools and through non-profit organizations. To more effectively target this demographic, VACU launched a new initiative titled “Financial Success for Kids,” designed for students ages 4 through 11. It developed and implemented a brand new K-5 financial education curriculum in addition to launching a virtual story time series for preschool- and elementary-aged students on YouTube.

According to Cherry Dale, Virginia Credit Union’s Vice President for Financial Education, “We have a team of four fulltime educators who coordinate and teach in-person and online educational programs at schools, workplaces, community centers and credit union facilities throughout the year. In 2023, our financial education programs reached more than 90,000 individuals of all ages. We are honored to receive this recognition for our programs and thank our community partners who are critical to this success.”

“Helping people develop greater confidence with financial matters through our education initiatives is central to our mission,” said Chris Shockley, VACU President and CEO. “We look for ways to include financial health in every member interaction and community initiative - it is a core value for us.”

The public and VACU employees have also recognized Virginia Credit Union with multiple national and local accolades including the prestigious 2023 Gallup Exceptional Workplace Award (GEWA). This award recognizes the most engaged workplace cultures in the world. VACU was also recognized as "The Best Credit Union" by Richmond Magazine, Virginia Living Magazine, the Farmville Herald and the Hopewell/Prince George Chamber of Commerce. Thousands participated in the voting process, affirming the credit union's exceptional member service, confidence-inspiring technology, and unwavering commitment to financial education.

Virginia Credit Union, a member-owned financial cooperative with over 320,000 members, offers a wide range of affordable banking services, loans, mortgages, and free financial education resources. The organization is committed to helping individuals gain confidence in managing their finances. As an equal housing opportunity lender, Virginia Credit Union is federally insured by NCUA. For more information, visit

Media Contact: Mike Pressendo | | 804-560-5664