Press Releases

New, free financial literacy program available for K–12 children

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

New, free financial literacy program available for K12 children

Riverdale, Utah – Feb. 17, 2021 – In an effort to help youth become financially savvy, America First Credit Union is launching FUNDamentals, a customizable, financial literacy program created for kindergarten through 12th grade students and teachers.

“Our goal is to make financial literacy easily accessible to educators and students,” said John B. Lund, president and CEO of America First Credit Union. “FUNDamentals is designed to make learning about finances fun and engaging. By teaching youth about money matters, we can help put them on the path to financial success.”

The program includes various full-lesson plans for Kfifth and sixth12th grades covering topic areas that address 10 of the most important critical life skills, including spending, saving, getting a loan, and other financial subjects. Each includes engaging animated videos, handouts, presentations, lesson plans, printable certificates, and other useful resources to inform students while keeping them entertained. Lessons are aligned with national standards of Common Core Math and Common Core English Language Arts requirements. Compared to other programs on the market, FUNDamentals is free, has up-to-date information, and offers specialized content catered to youth.

“Most financial lit programs cost the schools money and America First Credit Union’s FUNDamentals program is completely free,” said Lund. “Our program will help school districts save the money they would have spent on financial literacy and instead invest that toward other student needs.”

Understanding that the COVID-19 pandemic has changed education forever, the program, including scheduling virtual guest speakers who can teach the curriculum, can be done online. Teachers can request access to the program by visiting education.americafirst.com. This will allow access to our password-protected FUNDamentals portal. Once access has been granted by credit union staff, school districts and teachers can log into the online portal to use and customize the content.

Those wanting additional financial instruction for students can request a free virtual or in-person visit from a guest speaker by completing the form at education.americafirst.com.

According to Charles Schwab, 63% of Americans want to prioritize financial education. A lack of financial knowledge has severe consequences, including impacting relationships, emotional states, health, lifespan, lifestyle, career and enjoyment of life.

Editor’s Note: Credit union representatives are available for interviews. Email Jennifer.Lopez@rrpartners.com to coordinate.

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ABOUT AMERICA FIRST CREDIT UNION

Proudly celebrating 81 years of servicing members and a long-standing history, America First Credit Union has become one of the largest, most stable and most progressive credit unions in the country, and has remained a member-owned, not-for-profit cooperative financial institution. Today, America First has 128 locations, and is the eighth largest credit union in assets in the United States with over $14.4 billion, and the sixth largest credit union in membership in America with more than 1,165,985 members.

MEDIA CONTACTS:

Nicole Cypers
America First Credit Union
801.827.8655
ncypers@americafirst.com

Jennifer López
R&R Partners
702.318.4203
jenni4fer.lopez@rrpartners.com

America First Credit Union Expands to Northern Nevada

America First Credit Union Expands to Northern Nevada

LAS VEGAS – February 10, 2021 – Carson City area residents now have a new option for credit unions. America First Credit Union (AFCU) will open its first branch in Northern Nevada and 17th branch in Nevada on Feb. 16.

The 2,200-square-foot Carson City branch, located at 956 Topsy Lane Suite 101, Carson City, NV 89705, offers a walk-up ATM and four teller stations. Located in the Carson City Plaza off Interstate 50 and S. Carson Street, the new branch is 3.7 miles from the Nevada Legislative building.

“We are thrilled to add this spacious branch to expand our footprint in Nevada,” said Alexander Wager, AFCU Carson City branch manager. “Our branch fills a hole in the credit union market. My team and I are enthusiastic about the opportunity to meet new members, welcome prospective members, and contribute positively to the community.”

The lobby will be open from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday and 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday. The branch will be a full-service location, offering all products and services, including personal accounts, financial counseling services, auto and recreational vehicle loans, mortgages, and business solutions. The branch is equipped with a spacious lobby that enables social distancing, plexiglass at all teller stations, and floor markers.

AFCU will debut its branch via a virtual tour on Feb. 16 at 8 a.m. PT on the americafirst.com branch locator page (www.americafirst.com/about/contact/branches.html) and its social platforms. Viewers will receive a virtual tour of the branch location, meet the branch manager, and learn about amenities and details for the online promotion.

To mark the opening, new and prospective members are invited to partake in a virtual celebration, complete with raffle prize giveaways. One lucky individual who enters online or in-branch between Feb. 16 to Feb. 20 will win a $500 AFCU visa gift card and Saranoni luxury blanket. AFCU is offering a $25 match to every member who opens a new savings and checking account between Feb. 16 to Feb. 20.

The credit union will host a small, socially distanced, private ribbon cutting on Feb. 19 with the Carson City Chamber of Commerce and city officials to celebrate the expansion in Northern Nevada.

Managing the leading, not-for-profit cooperative financial institution branch is Alexander Wager. Wager, who previously served as a U.S. Bank client relations consultant, earned U.S. Bank’s 2019 Top Banker, an internal distinction awarded to only 5%. This Orlando native has been a Nevada resident since 2005.

The opening of the branch marks AFCU’s 128th branch in the U.S.

 

ABOUT AMERICA FIRST CREDIT UNION

Proudly celebrating 81 years of servicing members and a long-standing history, America First Credit Union has become one of the largest, most stable and most progressive credit unions in the country, and has remained a member-owned, not-for-profit cooperative financial institution. Today, America First has 128 locations, and is the eighth largest credit union in assets in the United States with over $14.4 billion, and the sixth largest credit union in membership in America with more than 1,165,985 members.

MEDIA CONTACTS:

Nicole Cypers
America First Credit Union
801.827.8655
ncypers@americafirst.com

Jennifer López
R&R Partners
702.318.4203
jenni4fer.lopez@rrpartners.com

Annual Meeting Update

The Nominations Committee has selected the following three candidates to fill the open positions at the upcoming 2021 Annual Meeting.

  • David McConkie
  • Cathy Person
  • John Spease

Nominations by petition must be received by 5pm, March 8, 2021 at the America First Credit Union Corporate Office, 1344 West 4675 South, Riverdale, UT, 84405. Petitions for Nomination must be signed by at least 500 members to be valid, along with a 150 word qualification statement by the nominee (Contact the Credit Union for information on how to submit a qualification statement). No nominations may be made at the Annual Meeting. If there are no nominations by petition the election of the Board will be made by acclamation and not election ballots.

America First Credit Union Announces New EVP Chief Lending Officer

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

America First Credit Union Announces New EVP Chief Lending Officer

Brett Christensen (left) takes over the role of EVP Chief Lending Officer as Randy Halley (right) retires after 43 years of service at America First Credit Union.

Riverdale, UT – January 12, 2021 – America First Credit Union welcomes Brett Christensen to its leadership team as EVP Chief Lending Officer for the leading nonprofit financial institution. He will oversee indirect lending, mortgages, consumer lending, business lending, home equity and sales.

Christensen is taking over this role from previous EVP Chief Retail and Lending Officer, Randy Halley, who is retiring after more than 43 years of service at America First Credit Union. Halley has been instrumental in developing key performance indicators for branch measurement, bringing machine learning to the credit union and driving the adoption of two critical operating systems for lending and transactions. He was also the visionary behind opening an innovation hub in downtown Salt Lake City, which has been toured by financial leaders from around the country and has provided an environment to test new banking solutions to measure efficiency and member adoption rates.

“We thank Randy for his incredible service to America First and its members,” said America First President and CEO John B. Lund. “It’s been an honor to work with him and see his vast contributions  to the credit union during his time here. I wish Randy the best in this next chapter.”

Stepping into this role with more than 28 years of credit union experience in both the U.S. and Canada, Christensen has been an industry leader working to educate and consult industry professionals on lending topics. Prior to America First, he served as the president of Loan Link Lending Center, was a senior consultant with Lending Solutions Consulting and most recently owned CU Lending Advice.

“We’re elated to add Brett to our leadership team,” said Linda Carver, America First Board Chair. “He has helped dozens of credit unions significantly improve their lending and sales results, and we’re honored to have his experience and expertise at America First. Brett is going to bring significant value to our members in this role.”

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ABOUT AMERICA FIRST CREDIT UNION

Proudly celebrating 81 years of servicing members and a long-standing history, America First Credit Union has become one of the largest, most stable and most progressive credit unions in the country, and has remained a member-owned, not-for-profit cooperative financial institution. Today, America First has 128 locations, and is the eighth largest credit union in assets in the United States with over $14.1 billion, and the sixth largest credit union in membership in America with more than 1,159,000 members.

MEDIA CONTACTS:

Nicole Cypers
America First Credit Union
801.827.8655
ncypers@americafirst.com

Kelsey Richardson
R&R Partners
801-913-9454
Kelsey.richardson@rrpartners.com

CEO Announces Retirement After 46 Years with America First Credit Union

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

CEO Announces Retirement After 46 Years with America First Credit Union

Riverdale, Utah – Jan. 5, 2021 – John B. Lund, president and CEO of America First Credit Union in Riverdale, Utah, has announced plans to retire in the spring of 2021, more than 46 years after first joining the institution. Thayne Shaffer, the credit union’s chief information officer (CIO), has been selected as Lund’s successor.

Since Lund became president and CEO in 2012, America First Credit Union has expanded its branch network from 104 to 128, increased assets from $5.5 billion to $14.2 billion, and membership numbers increased from 592,309 to 1,159,227.

“John, a tremendous person and a profoundly esteemed leader, has shown acuity and keenness of thought in every decision he has made,” said Linda Carver, chair of the board of directors for America First. “He has had a remarkable ability to understand and position the credit union for new opportunities to assure our long-term and continued growth. We are grateful for the extraordinary contributions John has made to propel America First and the credit union industry forward.”

Lund, whose retirement is effective April 1, 2021, quickly rose through the ranks. Most recently, he served as executive vice president. He first started in 1975 as the credit union’s courier.

“It’s been an honor to work with so many talented people and serve so many kind members,” said Lund. “I am certain America First members and colleagues will continue to thrive under Thayne’s leadership, using teamwork to strengthen relationships and our communities.”

Shaffer has worked at the credit union for more than 33 years and was appointed CIO in May 2019. His recent responsibilities included cyber security, enterprise systems, programming, database administration, quality assurance, and network operations.

“I am excited for this opportunity and will focus on executing the strategic priorities that have been set,” said Shaffer.

Most recently, Shaffer was appointed to senior vice president and controller in 2014. Between 2009 and 2019, he supervised multiple mergers and, in 2018 and 2019, served as staff coordinator for the Enterprise Risk Management committee.

 

John B. Lund is retiring as president and CEO of America First Credit Union (left). He will be replaced by Thayne Shaffer, America First’s chief information officer (right).

 

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ABOUT AMERICA FIRST CREDIT UNION

Proudly celebrating 81 years of servicing members and a long-standing history, America First Credit Union has become one of the largest, most stable and most progressive credit unions in the country, and has remained a member-owned, not-for-profit cooperative financial institution. Today, America First has 128 locations, and is the eighth largest credit union in assets in the United States with over $14.1 billion, and the sixth largest credit union in membership in America with more than 1,159,000 members.

MEDIA CONTACTS:

Nicole Cypers
America First Credit Union
801.827.8655
ncypers@americafirst.com

Kelsey Richardson
R&R Partners
801-913-9454
Kelsey.richardson@rrpartners.com

America First Credit Union invites community to experience award-winning display at Ogden Christmas Village

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

America First Credit Union invites community to experience award-winning display at Ogden Christmas Village

Riverdale, UT – November 25, 2020 – Each year, Christmas Village illuminates Ogden’s downtown area with magnificent displays and holiday lights from the Saturday after Thanksgiving through January 1. This year, America First Credit Union invites you to experience its award winning display which is one of hundreds of tiny cottages decorated to create a winter wonderland at the Ogden Municipal Gardens.

Earlier this year, America First was honored with a Multifaceted Marketing Award for the Ogden Christmas Village Cottage at the Credit Union National Association’s 2020 Diamond Awards, which recognizes outstanding marketing and business development achievements in the credit union industry.

The magical cottage features a scene set with a family of snowmen — a mom, dad and two kids — at night in “Snowybook Forest” and includes an animated storybook that flips pages as onlookers take in the enchanting display.

“We’re glad to be part of the magic of Ogden Christmas Village,” said John Coombs, America First Art Director who is the designer behind the cottage. “We’re thrilled at how the cottage turned out and the happiness it brings to people who see it. We invite you to come experience it for yourself.”

A behind-the-scenes look into the concepting and building of the cottage can be found here.

America First Credit Union’s “Snowybook Forest” display at Ogden’s Christmas Village

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ABOUT AMERICA FIRST CREDIT UNION

Proudly celebrating 81 years of servicing members and a long-standing history, America First Credit Union has become one of the largest, most stable and most progressive credit unions in the country, and has remained a member-owned, not-for-profit cooperative financial institution. Today, America First has 128 locations, and is the ninth largest credit union in assets in the United States with over $14.1 billion, and the sixth largest credit union in membership in America with more than 1,154,000 members.

MEDIA CONTACTS:

Nicole Cypers
America First Credit Union
801.827.8655
ncypers@americafirst.com

Kelsey Richardson
R&R Partners
801-913-9454
Kelsey.richardson@rrpartners.com

America First Credit Union donates $19,000 to feed 78,072 Utah, Idaho, Arizona and Nevada families

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

America First Credit Union donates $19,000 to feed 78,072 Utah, Idaho, Arizona and Nevada families

Riverdale, UT – Nov. 23, 2020 – With Thanksgiving around the corner and food banks still struggling to receive food donations to keep up with the growing need, America First Credit Union (AFCU) is donating more than 63,000 meals to the Utah Food Bank for families struggling to access to food during these challenging times brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. An additional 16,548 meals were donated to other agencies, including Three Square Food Bank serving families in Clark County, Nevada.

From Sept. 8 to Oct. 30, monetary donations were collected for the credit union’s annual food drive from AFCU staff, members and community, and the credit union also donated an additional $5,000. This was the first year AFCU hosted a monetary donation drive to support local food banks. In years past, canned goods had been collected at each of the credit union’s 128 locations. In total, employees and members have donated more than 78,072 meals in addition to 200,000 pounds of food to Utah and Southern Nevada families over the past 16 years.

The money donated to the Utah Food Bank and other agencies will be used to feed families in need across Utah, Idaho, Arizona and Southern Nevada.

“This year we saw a huge demand for food assistance. To be responsible to the needs our communities, we made changes to our annual food drive due to COVID-19 by moving from canned good donations at our branches to online donations, but we knew this year is more important than ever to help local families in need,” said Nicole Cypers, AFCU vice president of PR and governmental relations. “Thanks to our wonderful employees and members, who donated to be able to provide meals to our food-insecure neighbors.”

“Thank you to America First Credit Union for your understanding of the issues of hunger in Utah,” Jeanette Bott, Utah Food bank president. “America First has collectively given throughout the state of Utah 359,637 meals since we established our partnership in 1998. Thank you for the extended help, in addition to what you’ve done this year. ”

“The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated the hunger crisis in Southern Nevada — nearly 440,000 residents, or one in five, are now food-insecure,” said Three Square Food Bank President and CEO Brian Burton. “We are incredibly thankful to America First Credit Union who has been our steadfast partner in the fight against hunger since 2017, allowing us to leverage their gift as a matching challenge to the community every year, providing an additional 90,000 meals to our neighbors in need.”

The credit union is donating $15,381 to Utah Food bank food to help individuals and families struggling with food insecurity. A virtual check presentation was presented on Nov.12 to Bott by Cypers (CLICK HERE to watch the video).

According to Feeding America, the nation’s premiere food insecurity program, food banks are feeding nearly 60 percent more people during the COVID-19 pandemic than they were in June 2019. At the same time, many food banks are seeing decreased donations from the grocery stores and manufacturers that helped them in the past.

The community can donate online to both Utah Food Bank, Idaho Food Bank, United Food Bank (Arizona) and Three Square Food Bank.

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ABOUT AMERICA FIRST CREDIT UNION

Proudly celebrating 81 years of servicing members and a long-standing history, America First Credit Union has become one of the largest, most stable and most progressive credit unions in the country, and has remained a member-owned, not-for-profit cooperative financial institution. Today, America First has 128 locations, and is the ninth largest credit union in assets in the United States with over $14.1 billion, and the sixth largest credit union in membership in America with more than 1,154,000 members.

MEDIA CONTACTS:

Nicole Cypers
America First Credit Union
801.827.8655
ncypers@americafirst.com

Kelsey Richardson
R&R Partners
801-913-9454
Kelsey.richardson@rrpartners.com

America First Credit Union Continues Legacy of Supporting Veterans by Donating Items for Care Packages

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

America First Credit Union Continues Legacy of Supporting Veterans by Donating Items for Care Packages

Credit Union Participates in “Hope for Our Heroes” Campaign Dropping Care Packages

LAS VEGAS – Nov. 17, 2020 – Southern Nevada veterans were treated to a socially distanced caravan in which various community groups, including America First Credit Union (AFCU), dropped off much needed supplies. Veterans also witnessed a parade to thank them for their service during the “Hope for Our Heroes” campaign, which was organized by KTNV TV ABC 13.

On Wednesday, Nov. 11, AFCU business development representative Frank Tavares participated in the caravan visiting older veterans living in assisted living at the Nevada State Veterans Home. To combat the adverse effects of isolation during this global health pandemic, the credit union was one of several groups dropping off 300 care packages filled with goodies including blankets, books, lip balm, sanitizer, tissue, cards, letters and cookies.

“Veterans are one of our country’s greatest assets,” said AFCU president and CEO, John B. Lund. “Now more than ever, veterans need support. It’s a true honor and privilege to help veterans who have done so much for our country. America First Credit Union will continue to support programs that honor our veterans and the service that they provided to our country while making a deep impact on the critical needs that exist in our community.”

To provide much needed support to the more than 150,000 veterans living in Clark County, Nevada, this holiday season, the credit union sponsored the event that partnered with Honor Flight Southern Nevada and Kline Veterans Fund to combat emotional duress.

AFCU is a longtime supporter of veterans. Employees have volunteered with Honor Flight of Southern Nevada (HFSN) by sending guardians on missions to escort veterans to Washington, D.C., for a tour of the memorials. HFSN flies veterans of World War II, the Korean War, and the Vietnam War on all-expenses-paid trips to Washington, D.C., to experience — among other landmarks and tourist destinations — the WWII Memorial, the Korean War Memorial, the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, the Marine Corps/Iwo Jima Memorial, and the Changing of the Guard at Arlington National Cemetery.

Photo: Frank Tavares, America First Credit Union business development representative, drops off care packages to veterans.

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ABOUT AMERICA FIRST CREDIT UNION

Proudly celebrating 81 years of servicing members and a long-standing history, America First Credit Union has become one of the largest, most stable and most progressive credit unions in the country, and has remained a member-owned, not-for-profit cooperative financial institution. Today, America First has 128 locations, and is the ninth largest credit union in assets in the United States with over $13.8 billion, and the sixth largest credit union in membership in America with more than 1,151,000 members.

MEDIA CONTACTS:

Nicole Cypers
America First Credit Union
801.827.8655
ncypers@americafirst.com

Jennifer López
R&R Partners
702.318.4203
jenni4fer.lopez@rrpartners.com

Branded Visa Debit Card Available for Raider Nation

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Branded Visa Debit Card Available for Raider Nation

Las Vegas – October 6, 2020 – Raider Nation now has a new way to show its love for the NFL’s most unique team. America First Credit Union, the Raider’s official credit union partner, is launching the first-ever exclusive Raiders debit card fans can use to show team support all year round.

Combining its members-first exceptional service, Raiders fans can display their fandom on their debit card while also gaining access to features and benefits, including Card Guard® and ABC Deals®.The AFCU Las Vegas Raiders debit card is a unique collaboration between the team and credit union that stands out from the rest with the Raider’s iconic colors and logo.

“The Raiders’ partnership underscores our continued investment and interest in supporting the communities and sports fans we serve, which represents the ultimate personalized experience for our members,” said AFCU president and CEO John B. Lund. “AFCU’s comprehensive partnership with the Raiders is an extension of the Raider Nation.”

“We are delighted to partner with America First Credit Union, which not only offers an outstanding portfolio of products, but also aligns with our commitment to the community,” said Las Vegas Raiders President Marc Badain. “In addition, the branded design of the official Raiders debit card allows holders the opportunity to show their Silver & Black pride.”

To request an official Raiders debit card with checking account, visit americafirst.com/raiders or call 800-999-3961.

AFCU’s multiyear Raiders’ partnership includes a program to support small-business owners and a charitable donation component. More information will be forthcoming.

Editor’s Note: Interview opportunities with AFCU representatives are available.

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ABOUT AMERICA FIRST CREDIT UNION

Proudly celebrating 81 years of servicing members and a long-standing history, America First Credit Union has become one of the largest, most stable and most progressive credit unions in the country, and has remained a member-owned, not-for-profit cooperative financial institution. Today, America First has 131 locations, and is the ninth largest credit union in assets in the United States with over $13.7 billion, and the fifth largest credit union in membership in America with more than 1,144,596 members.

MEDIA CONTACTS:

Nicole Cypers
America First Credit Union
801.827.8655
ncypers@americafirst.com

Jennifer López
R&R Partners
702.318.4203
jenni4fer.lopez@rrpartners.com

America First Credit Union Integrates Physical Distancing Measures in Latest Branch Opening

Vineyard, Utah – August 31, 2020 – To meet the high demand of members in the fastest growing city in the U.S., America First Credit Union is opening the doors on August 31 to its newest branch in Vineyard, Utah. To encourage psychical distancing and stay a safe essential resource for the community, the new branch will be equipped with plexiglass at all teller stations and other precautions to keep members and branch staff safe. The branch will also utilize two remote tellers at our drive-up, in addition to five in-person tellers. The remote tellers allow for person-to-person interaction that many members enjoy while allowing for physical distancing. The member-owned, not-for-profit cooperative financial institution is showing off its newest branch via a virtual tour and grand opening later this week.

The 3,350 square-feet branch, located at 758 East Mill Road, Vineyard, UT, will be managed by Michelle Bohn, who has been part of the America First team for more than 27 years and has worked at 12 branch locations. She started as a student trainee while in high school at the Ogden Main Branch, has been a lead teller at in-store locations, assistant manager/manager at two locations and a market manager at four locations.

“I’ve had the opportunity to work for America First in twelve branches from Cache Valley to Utah County and our number one priority is always our members,” said Bohn, America First’s Vineyard branch manager. “We want to provide the best member experience to the Vineyard community and so we have integrated all different options into this branch to fit the various needs of each of our members. So whether you want to work with a teller or loan officer in person, utilize a virtual/remote teller so you’re still talking to a person but in an environment you’re comfortable with, or have the ease and convenience of our online and mobile options, there’s a solution for every member.”

Also available to members and the many young families, college students and recent graduates in the Vineyard community, a financial counselor will be available by appointment at the branch to be a resource for members who are looking to improve their financial literacy, manage student loans, and improve their financial security. America First team members will also be on hand to assist members with new checking/savings accounts as well as personal and business loans.

The branch is equipped with five in-person tellers and two remote tellers, five loan stations, and a drive-up ATM. The lobby will be open from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday with the drive-up opening at 9 a.m. on those days and 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturdays.

In celebration of the grand opening, America First members who open a new savings account or a new checking account and deposit $25 the first two weeks of opening (Aug 31 – Sept 12) will receive $25. There will also be a chance for members to win a $500 America First Visa Card for members who visit the branch during that time.

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ABOUT AMERICA FIRST CREDIT UNION

Proudly celebrating 81 years of servicing members and a long-standing history, America First Credit Union has become one of the largest, most stable and most progressive credit unions in the country, and has remained a member-owned, not-for-profit cooperative financial institution. Today, America First has 131 locations, and is the ninth largest credit union in assets in the United States with over $13.6 billion, and the sixth largest credit union in membership in America with more than 1,137,648 members.

MEDIA CONTACTS:

Nicole Cypers
America First Credit Union
801.827.8655
ncypers@americafirst.com

Kelsey Richardson
R&R Partners
801.913.9454
Kelsey.richardson@rrpartners.com