Credit unions are unique because the philosophy of “People Helping People” has always been their driving force. In 1946, seven employees of the State of Vermont gathered to organize a credit union to offer affordable savings and credit for themselves and their fellow state employees. In 1947, the Vermont State Employees Credit Union was chartered by Vermont, and the first office opened in the state office building at 133 State Street in Montpelier.
At first, VSECU membership was open only to employees of the state of Vermont. In the 1960s, the membership expanded to include family members of any current member of the credit union. In April of 2002, the field of membership grew again to include anyone who works or lives in the six counties of Addison, Caledonia, Chittenden, Lamoille, Orange and Washington. Rutland County was added in 2006. The membership took a big leap in 2009, when it swelled to include everyone who lives or works in Vermont. Membership continues to grow however, and in 2017, expanded once more to welcome members of the Northeast Sustainable Energy Association (NESEA), a non-profit regional trade association with an educational focus and mission that aligns with VSECU’s vision of creating greater environmental prosperity for more Vermonters. As a not for profit financial institution, we are proud to be dedicated to improving the quality of life for all Vermonters.
In 2016, we established a new vision: “to inspire a movement that brings people together to empower the possibilities for greater financial, environmental, and social prosperity.” The goal? To align our organization with a larger movement of values-based and impact-driven organizations in Vermont and around the world. That same year, we launched two local initiatives aimed at promoting the growth and development of our communities- Co-op Capital and Powered by VSECU. Together, these programs showcase our investment, not only in local communities and economies, but in the philosophy of “People Helping People” itself.
Community contributions have been a staple of VSECU culture for many years, but 2012 marked a revolution in how we do it with the inception of We Care 2. This program gives our members the ability to direct the disbursement of $20,000 every year to local Vermont charities, and solidified the member-first approach that is a quintessential part of how we do business at VSECU. Since then, we have taken huge steps to further cement our position as a cornerstone of community and economic development in the Vermont landscape through Volunteer Time Off for VSECU employees, our members-only VHeat fuel buying program, and by developing VGreen clean energy loan products and programs. Click here if you would like to learn more about our giving policy