“Crash the GAC” was born at last year’s GAC when a group of young professionals decided they wanted to fight for the future of credit unions alongside industry veterans.
That original 25-person group has since grown into a grassroots community of more than 120 young credit union professionals known as The Crash Network.
This year they’re back in D.C. with a brand-new crop of 16 GAC Crashers who received scholarships from CUNA’s center for professional development.
The Crash Network, a project led by the Filene Research Institute, finds and creates opportunities for young people to be more deeply involved in the credit union industry.
During the past year, The Crash Network has partnered with groups such as CUNA, CUNA Mutual Group, World Council of Credit Unions, and state leagues to coordinate local, statewide and national meet-ups, pilot a mentorship program, launch an online collaboration network, and connect young professionals to service and growth opportunities such as the National Credit Union Foundation’s Reality Fair.
The Crash Network also aspires to bring the energy of passionate young professionals to the cause of keeping credit unions relevant, says Brent Dixon, founder of the Crash Network. “The fact that we happen to be next in line cannot be what creates the future leaders of the industry. We have to earn it.”
In 1930, a 70-year-old Edward Filene wrote: "Youth is too serious to become obedient. It is too ambitious to accept, not merely the old formulas, but the old theories of success." The group is driven by that call to create the future.