Wednesday, September 20, 2023

Vote For The MEMBER NOMINATED CANDIDATES - Why Michael Clements Is The Real Thing...

   Michael Clements is a MEMBER NOMINATED CANDIDATE for election to the SECU Board. Why should you vote for Michael Clements?

Here's why! SECU needs firmly principled Board members who will represent the best interests of the membership - not their own self-interests.

Take a look at the letter below from Mr. Clements to the SECU Board of Directors - PLEASE NOTE THE DATE OF THE LETTER - OCTOBER 13, 2022.  Two days after last year's SECU Annual Meeting resolution, Mr. Clements of his own accord stood up for the membership against discriminatory risk-based lending at SECU. "This Board" didn't care and proceeded with the risk-based loan program, which on average overcharges SECU members simply because they are young, Black, or female.

Here's what Mr. Clements had to say:

October 13, 2022

Dear Chairman Ayers,

I have been a proud member of the State Employees Credit Union for well over 45 years. I have served on our local advisory board. I was one of the original members of the loan review committee and served for its entire tenure. I had been honored to serve for six years on the SECU Foundation and I am again on our local advisory committee. I am very concerned with what I heard at the close of Tuesday’s annual meeting. Several issues were identified, which apparently are under discussion, and which I, and other members at my table, were totally unaware. Our general consensus was “Wait! we are the State Employees Credit Union”. Some of these issues seem to be so totally contrary to our culture and philosophy that we were all in somewhat a state of shock.

I have been a strong advocate for our credit union. The reason is because in all of the meetings I’ve attended on the SECU boards and committees, we have always highlighted the impact on our members. Our first question and consideration has been “How does this affect our members?” Indeed, the fact that for these many years we even had something called a “Loan Review Committee” demonstrated our concerns that we were doing the right thing by our members and allowing other members to review the decisions made by our loan officers and given them the authority to actually override those decisions. Though this never happened in our committee, we made suggestions on behalf of the member that may have given them the opportunity to obtain a loan. This was just one of the many practices of our SECU proving our commitment to doing the right thing. It concerns me that a decision was made to disband the LRC. With the LRC, every member had the opportunity to have their fellow members weigh in on their application. To my knowledge, no financial institution in our state, provides this option. This was another of the reasons why the SECU is better and more successful that other financial institutions.

It appears from Tuesday’s revelation that some of the items up for discussion are an attempt for us to either increase our market share or to compete with commercial banks. One of our points of pride has been that we are not like commercial banks; we are unique which puts us in a category unto itself. That is why we have been identified by Forbes, for many years, as the best credit union in the state of North Carolina, and why we are the second largest credit union in the United States of America! We have always put our members first, and all members were equal. I will admit of those six issues that were placed for consideration, the one which was most egregious to me was the introduction of Risk-Based Lending. This policy clearly signifies that all our members are NOT equal, and that those members who have the lowest credit scores and the weakest backgrounds will actually be charged more for their loans! I understand that the practice of Risk-Based Lending was approved by the board earlier this year but has yet to be implemented. In my opinion, this is NOT a good practice and I am appalled by this decision. I feel strongly that a majority of our members would feel the same way IF we had been informed prior to the decision! Wait...we are the State Employees Credit Union we are not like other financial institution...we are better. Also, attempts to acquire other credit unions and to have an open membership policy would be viewed as competing with commercial banks.

During Tuesday’s meeting, we felt a strong sense of pride hearing the various reports of the soundness and strength of our organization. Hearing about our growth over these 85 years our only response was...WOW! So why are we even considering these changes?

As one member who has been a proud cheerleader for our State Employees Credit Union, I am concerned that what makes us a clearly incredible organization could be lost in our effort to be....what? Please discuss carefully any changes to our policies that could either negatively impact any group of our members or would affect our strong standing in the financial community. Please reconsider some of the decisions that the Board has made or is considering, and though we know the Board has the authority to make to these decisions, possibly share the more significant changes with the members. We are the State Employees Credit Union and we have always put our members first. Thank you.


Michael L. Clements

Former member of the Local Advisory Board (late 1980’s) Former Member of the SECU Board Search Committee Former Member of the SECU Foundation
Former Member of the Loan Review Committee
Member of the SECU Stratford Road Advisory Committee

CC: SECU Board of Directors



  1. What a terrific letter to this board! Will you publish their response tomorrow? Many members would love to know what this board replied to Mr. Clements.

    1. I bet $10 the board never responded. Any takers?

    2. If they did, he was the only one! This board sure ignored everybody else

    3. I can hear the sound of the shredder now .........

  2. I vote we exchange Mr, Clements for the other 11 and be done with it

  3. That is a great letter. Appreciate Mr. Clements undertaking this difficult challenge for all the members and the vast majority of employees.

    Please cast your vote for him and the other member nominees, Perkins and Stone, ASAP.

  4. It would be an honor to meet you sir and I can not wait for you to be on this board. You exemplify what SECU stands for.