Our Story

COVID-19 Updates

Updates:

  • 3/26/2020 - Effective Monday 3/30/2020, our branches are open Monday through Friday from 9:00am-5:00pm. Our Member Resource Team hours will stay the same – Monday through Friday from 8:00am-5:30pm, and Saturdays from 9:00am-1:00pm. Effective 4/4/2020, our branches will be closed on Saturdays.
  • 3/24/2020 - If you are a NorthCountry borrower with student loans and have been impacted by COVID-19, please see the 'For Help Making Ends Meet' section below. 
  • 3/23/2020 - SBA Disaster Loans are available, please see the 'For Help Making Ends Meet' section below. 
  • 3/23/2020 - Our Alburgh branch will be closing at 5:00pm effective 3/23/2020 until further notice. Please see our Locations Page for more details.
  • 3/19/2020 - Our Orleans branch will be closing at 5:00pm effective 3/19/2020 until further notice. We apologize for any inconvenience.
  • 3/18/2020 - We've released a new product – the COVID-19 Financial Relief Program. Please see the 'For Help Making Ends Meet' section below. 
  • 3/18/2020 - We are open! However, to ensure the safety of our staff and members we have restricted lobby access at all of our branches. Please use the drive-through whenever possible. If you do need to enter the branch, please knock on the door or call (phone numbers will be listed on external signage for your convenience) and a representative will greet you. Please be courteous and leave at least six feet between yourself and anyone else who is waiting.
  • 3/17/2020 - We have postponed our 2020 Annual Meeting, originally scheduled for 4/16/2020. We do not yet have a new date, please stay tuned to future communications.
  • 3/17/2020 - Our Montpelier Branch is closed until further notice
  • 3/17/2020 - For the health and safety of our members and employees, access to the elevator at our Swift Street branch in South Burlington has been temporarily restricted to employees only. Applications for commercial and mortgage loans can be submitted online or taken by phone. If you need an appointment for mortgages, please call (802) 264-6700. For commerical loans, please call (802) 264-6742.

    Please Note: Given the high volume of mortgage applications, we are processing requests as quickly as possible. We expect to respond to applications and inquiries within 48-72 hours. Thank you for your patience and support.

Guidelines:

Skip the trip! Social distancing helps keep people safe.
COVID-19 is most dangerous to people who are ill or elderly. More cases reported in Vermont are expected. Please help protect your most vulnerable neighbors by considering these alternatives to visiting a branch:

  • Online/mobile banking. If you haven’t registered for online banking or downloaded our app to your mobile phone or tablet, please consider self-registering now, just in case.
  • Mobile deposit capture. Use your mobile phone or tablet to deposit checks.
  • Bill pay. Within online banking or our mobile app, pay your bills without stamps, checks, or envelopes.
  • Call us. We’re at (802) 657-6847 or toll-free (800) 660-3258 during regular business hours.
  • Email us. Contact our Member Resource Team at service@northcountry.org
  • Chat with us online. Go to www.northcountry.org, open the menu, and select “chat” at the top.
  • Apply for a loan online? Sure!*

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Need to download our app? Here you go!

Thank you for helping us maintain a healthy environment at NorthCountry. For reliable and up-to-date information on COVID-19, please visit either www.cdc.gov or www.who.int.

Which is better? Paper or plastic?
We’ve had a few questions come in about the importance of having cash on hand during the COVID-19 pandemic. Cash used to be king, but those days are long gone!  If you want to carry some cash in your wallet, we understand. But while COVID-19 continues to spread through the community, we urge you to consider the benefits of using your debit or credit card instead.

  Paper (currency) Plastic (debit or credit card)
  Easily disinfected No Yes
  Easy to replace No Yes
  Accepted almost anywhere Yes Yes
  Can be used online No Yes
  Functions 24/7 Yes Yes
  Mobile wallet compatible No Yes
  Fraud protection included No Yes

 

Neither paper nor plastic? Here’s a third option.
If you have a NorthCountry debit or Visa Rewards credit card, you can add an electronic version of it to your mobile phone. Get ApplePay, Android Pay, or Samsung Pay from your app store and follow the prompts. The next time you want to purchase something with your NorthCountry debit or credit card, open the app, tap on the card you want to use, and wave your phone over (or tap it to) the point-of-sale terminal. Tokenization keeps the transaction secure, and your plastic card can stay tucked neatly in your wallet.

Let’s add those cards to your mobile wallet! It’s easy, secure, and convenient.

  1. Open the Google Play Store app on your device
  2. Open the menu and select “Payment methods”
  3. Under “Add payment method”, select the payment method you want to add
  4. Follow the instructions

For Help Making Ends Meet

If you are concerned about the impact of COVID-19 on your finances, we have solutions. Contact us by phone, email, or chat to get started, or apply here*

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COVID-19 Financial Relief Program
If you are experiencing a reduction in your income due to COVID-19, you may qualify for a loan of up to $5,000 based on your past relationship with us. No need to visit a branch! Contact us during regular business hours at (800) 660-3258 or (802) 657-6847.

COVID-19 Financial Relief Loan
  Existing members with direct deposit Existing self-employed members
Eligibility requirements Established direct deposit to a NorthCountry account A minimum two years checking (share draft) account. Average balance(s) of $2,500 in the last 90 days.
Maximum amount $5,000 or one month of net pay, whichever is less $5,000 or the average monthly deposit, whichever is less
Annual Percentage Rate (APR) 0.00%
Annual Fee $0
Loan term 24 months beginning 120 days after the loan is granted
Repayment Automatic electronic payment from NorthCountry checking
 
Additional COVID-19 Financial Relief for Existing Members
Eligible existing members are invited to request fee refunds for overdrawn checking accounts and waived penalties for the early withdrawal of funds in a certificate.
Eligibility Existing members whose income has been negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic
Required documentation Proof of income interruption
Availability Upon request. Please call or email.

 

Support for NorthCountry Student Loan Borrowers
If you are a NorthCountry borrower with student loans and have been impacted by COVID-19, you may qualify for a three-month extension. Please contact our loan servicer by visiting their site or by calling University Accounting Services at 1-800-723-2210. 

Small Business Administration (SBA) Disaster Loans
Vermont small business owners struggling with a temporary loss of revenue due to the COVID-19 pandemic can apply for Small Business Administration (SBA) disaster loans. Funds can be used to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable, and other bills. For more information, call the SBA disaster assistance customer service center at 1-800-659-2955 (TTY: 1-800-877-8339), e-mail disastercustomerservice@sba.gov, or visit the SBA website.

Income Advance Program
Our Income Advance Program is offered as an employee benefit at nearly 50 businesses and organizations in Vermont. Through the IA Program, employees can get cash loans of up to $1,500 through their human resource departments within an hour. The borrower repays the loan through payroll deduction over the course of six months. A small annual program fee is paid by the employer.

Income Advance is offered at a diverse group of manufacturers, home health organizations, hospitals, non-profits, breweries, and retail establishments. If you would like your employer to consider adding the Income Advance Program to your company’s benefit package, have them contact us. The program is inexpensive to offer and can be up and running within a few days.

Other Ways to Access Cash

  • Checking (Share Draft) Line of Credit. If the balance in your checking account might not be enough to cover your expenses, a line of credit* could be the answer.
  • Visa Rewards Credit Card. A cash advance from your credit card can be deposited to your checking account. Don’t have a NorthCountry Visa Rewards credit card yet? Apply here*.
  • Signature Loan. Borrow cash* and take up to four years to pay it back.

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A collage of different newspaper clippings highlighting NorthCountry achievements. You cannot read any of the clippings as they are all quite small.

In 1950, the employees of General Electric in Burlington, Vermont organized a credit union where they could lend to and borrow from one another at rates better than those offered by commercial banks. Over time, that little financial cooperative has grown into one of Vermont’s largest and most innovative credit unions, and our commitment to providing people with the best possible value and experience has stayed true.

Near the end of 2001, we opened our doors to anyone in the community and expanded our commitment to include support for the non-profits that make Vermont a better place to live, work, learn, and play. Our employees are provided paid time off to volunteer at their favorite organizations, and funds are set aside each year for college scholarships, community events, and causes ranging from homelessness and disease prevention to hunger and animal welfare.

In an industry where success often seems to be measured solely by a company’s bottom line, we use data from two international outside organizations to gauge the satisfaction levels of our members and employees. These measures allow us to accurately identify in which areas we’re doing well, and where we can improve. Specifically, our strategic plan states we will achieve and maintain a:

Overall Satisfaction Score

It is our goal to provide a world class experience to each of our members. The credit union has partnered with Member Loyalty Group, and uses the Overall Satisfaction Score to measure our success and member satisfaction.

As of Spring 2020, our average score was a 9.4 out of 10.

When you open an account with us or perform a transaction, you may receive a short electronic survey regarding your satisfaction with the service you received. If you receive the survey, please take a few seconds to respond and let us know how we did. Your feedback helps us identify where we're doing well, as well as opportunities for improvement.

Gallup Q12 Overall Score of 4.4 (top 3% of employers worldwide) or Higher

Engaged employees provide the best service. Gallup’s annual employee survey poses 12 questions designed to gauge employee engagement.

Want to know more about us? We’ve included information below that you might find interesting, or stop by any of our branches for a visit. Now that you know our story, we would love to hear yours!

Annual Meeting

The credit union holds its Board of Directors election and annual meeting in the spring. This event is open to the community and includes lunch and an engaging guest speaker. Previous speakers have included Amy Van Dyken-Rouen, Jennifer Lim, Matthew Luhn, Robyn Benincasa, and Ryan Leaf.

Please note: Due to Coronavirus concerns we have postponed the 2020 Annual Meeting, originally scheduled for 4/16/2020. We hope to hold the event at a later date, and will release additional information at some point in the near future. Thank you for your understanding.

See what we accomplished in 2018 by viewing our Annual Report*

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Board of Directors

NorthCountry’s Board of Directors and Supervisory Committee are comprised of credit union members who volunteer their time and skills for the benefit of the credit union and its members. 

Candidates for open positions are nominated in one of two ways: by the Nominating Committee, or by petition. Blank petitions are available from the Nominating Committee by contacting the credit union’s Executive and Member Loyalty Coordinator at (800) 660-3258 x6712.

The nomination process takes place annually prior to NorthCountry’s Annual Meeting. If any election is held, the results are announced at the credit union annual meeting.

If you have a passion for sharing your expertise, consider joining! Questions? Please contact the Nominating Committee at nominatingcommittee@northcountry.org.

The following members volunteer their time and knowledge by serving terms on the credit union’s Board of Directors:

Rachel Allard, Chair

Rachel has served on the Board of Directors since 2014. Rachel currently works as the Vice President of Operations at Union Street Media. Rachel has her Bachelors in Communication from Boston University College of Communication. During her free time, she enjoys reading, traveling, and skiing.  


Beth Chenette, Vice Chair

Beth joined the NCFCU Board in 2017 following the merger with Granite Hills Credit Union, where she was a member of the Board of Directors and a longtime volunteer. Beth is the Director of Digital Channel Management at National Life Group and has more than 20 years of experience in corporate communications, web strategy and management, and digital marketing.

Active in the community, she currently serves as a public member of the Vermont Board of Architects, a governor-appointed position overseeing licensing and supervision for the Office of Professional Regulation. Beth is a former board member and marketing committee chair of Green Mountain United Way, and is a past volunteer for Central Vermont Home Health & Hospice.

Beth holds an A.S. in public relations and communications and a B.S. in business management from Champlain College, and a MBA with a concentration in organizational leadership from Ashford University. She has also earned several insurance industry professional designations. During her free time, she enjoys traveling, live music and snowboarding.


Steve Kirby, Treasurer

Steve has served on the Board of Directors since 2012. Steve is a retired General Dynamics employee. Steve is currently self-employed as a project management consultant. Steve has his Bachelors in Chemistry from the University of Vermont. Steve previously served more than 30 years as a Supervisory Committee member. During his free time, he enjoys hunting and competitive shooting sports.


Frank Thompson, Secretary

Frank has served on the Board of Directors since 1999. Frank is a Licensed Master Plumber and Certified Gas Fitter in Vermont and New Hampshire.  Frank has worked as a Project Manager for New England Air Systems for the past twenty-nine years. Frank is retired the US Navy reserve. During his time in the Armed Forces of the United States he was deployed to Iraq, Afghanistan and South Korea. Frank is also Past President of the Vermont Association of Plumbing and Heating Contractors. During his free time, Frank and his wife Elaine spend the free working on their 1910 Victorian and flower gardens at their home in Barre, Vermont.


Francis Taginski, Director

Francis has served on the Board of Directors since 2014.  Francis was chair of the Supervisory Committee. Francis was also the Director of Business Operations for the Vermont State Colleges, and Business Manager for the Barre Supervisory School District. Francis has worked at various Vermont communities as a Town Manager. Francis dedicates his time volunteering for the Vermont Symphony, Vermont City Marathon, Fletcher Library and Charity golf. During his free time, he enjoys fishing, golfing and historical research.


Teresa Kajenski, Director

Teresa wants to use her knowledge to assist in making decisions that will benefit the credit union members while being mindful of the credit union’s core values. She also wants to assist with keeping the strategic plan current and useful.

Teresa is a Certified Public Accountant and current board member of the New England Graduate Accounting Study Conference. She was previously a council member for the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA), and past president of the Vermont Society of Certified Public Accountants.


Charles Roumas, Director

Charles J Roumas has rejoined our board in 2017 after a short hiatus. He had served for 6+ years prior, including several as Chairman.  Charles is a retired American Express executive, and a former Director of the Amex Bank of Canada. Until recently, he was a 10+ year resident of Monkton in Addison County. A graduate of The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania in accounting and organizational management, Charles brings private and public sector experience, most recently as a Town Treasurer, a Justice of the Peace, a Sewer Commissioner and his proudest involvement-- as a former director and fund-raiser for Vermont's largest special needs therapeutic horseback riding program, CHAMP (Champlain Adaptive Mounted Program). 


Michael Peterson, Director

Mike joined the Board of Directors in 2019, but has been a NorthCountry member since moving to the Burlington area in 1999. Mike holds a MS in Managing Innovation in Information Technology (MSMIIT) from Champlain College, and currently works for GE Healthcare in South Burlington as a Senior Manager, Software Engineering where he has a passion for technology quality and simplification. Mike enjoys travel (especially beaches), being outdoors in warmer months, reading, and home improvement projects.


John Maitland, Director

John joined the Board of Directors in 2019. As a labor and employment lawyer, John works with employers to develop effective solutions that integrate legal compliance, good human resource practices, and strategic alignment with the organization’s mission.

John has served on various Boards, including the YMCA of Greater Burlington, the Visiting Nurses Association of Chittenden and Grande Isle Counties, the United Way of Chittenden County, and the Vermont State Council for the Society of Human Resource Professionals.

CEO

A headshot of NorthCountry FCU's CEO, Bob Morgan. He is smiling, facing the camera, and wearing a black suit with red patterened tie and blue button down.Robert (Bob) Morgan is the Chief Executive Officer of NorthCountry Federal Credit Union. He was born and raised in New Hartford, New York, and later moved to Vermont where he earned his Bachelor’s Degree in history and Masters of Business Administration in 1998 from the University of Vermont. Bob began his banking career while in graduate school as an intern for five hours a week at Vermont Development Credit Union (VDCU).  After graduating, he continued working at VDCU in various capacities including lending manager and chief operating officer until March 2000.

In March 2000, Bob accepted a branch manager position at NorthCountry Federal Credit Union in South Burlington and was promoted to Vice President, Lending and Administration in August 2001. In August 2008, he was promoted to Executive Vice President. During this time, he developed and refined lending programs, launched a business lending program, obtained down payment assistance grants for people to purchase homes, and collaborated with local non-profits to create an easy financial solution for people of modest means who encounter emergency financing needs.

He also received his Certified Senior Executive (CSE) and Certified Chief Executive (CCE) designations from the CUES Center for Applied Executive Management (2005) and the CUES CEO Institute (2008). 

In March 2012, Bob was promoted to the role of Chief Executive Officer. The outgoing President/CEO, John Benoit, praised Bob Morgan as an innovator, a problem solver, and a qualified leader.

Bob has served on the Association of Vermont Credit Union’s (AVCU) Board of Directors for seven years, serving as the Chair of the AVCU’s Social Responsibility Committee, Annual Meeting Committee and Audit and Government Relations Committee. He participated in Filene’s I3* innovation program from 2008-2010 and now serves on Filene’s CEO Research Council. The Filene Research Institute is a nonprofit, independent, “think tank” for the credit union and consumer finance industry.

When he is not managing his many duties and staff at NorthCountry, Bob serves as Chair on the Board of the Greater Burlington YMCA in Burlington, VT and is a volunteer coach for youth baseball and basketball. He lives in Essex Junction, Vermont with his wife and three children.

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Community

We like to stay active in our communities by sponsoring, attending, volunteering, and hosting events which bring together neighbors. To see us in action, make sure to check our Facebook Page where we post announcements for upcoming NorthCountry sponsored events and pictures from past events.

NorthCountry Cares

Our staff is committed to serving our neighbors, both in our branches and out in the community. In 2018, NorthCountry held its inaugural "Cares Week". Our twelve branches and home office staff raised $9,220.27 to help local non-profits in northern Vermont by fundraising, volunteering, and raising awareness of important causes including housing for veterans, animal welfare, poverty, hunger, health issues, and community services.

Look for information soon about our Cares Program for 2019 and 2020!

 

Twice as Nice

We're matching contributions to local organizations! Every quarter we will highlight a new institution to receive donations. Donate $5, and we'll donate $5. Donate $100, and we'll donate $100! No donation is too small to make a difference. Ask any of our tellers to help you make your donation. The credit union will match up to a total of $2500 in donations.

If you would like your non-profit organization to be considered for NorthCountry's Twice as Nice program, please contact us.

Mission and Core Values

For years, when asked about our mission statement, we would talk about our core values; the three C's: Confident, Caring, and Creative. Our core values are what we hold true, but they don't quite answer the question of a clear mission. People want to know what makes us unique, so we explored what really makes us special. When we finished, we had the words to clearly communicate the mission that drives us forward.

Our mission is:

To make dreams come true for all by offering personalized financial solutions. As a cooperative, we are inspired and empowered to do the right thing for our members and employees.

 

NorthCountry’s “Can-Do” core values are the tenets that underlie every transaction, interaction, and decision – internally and externally.

Confident

Our training and mentoring ensure employees at all levels understand our corporate expectations, reflect superb judgment, and are empowered to do the right thing.

Caring

Our success is built on mutually beneficial relationships with our stakeholder groups and our reputation as a reliable, trusted provider of quality service, respect, and community support.

Creative

We provide and create convenient, affordable solutions that improve people’s lives and help them achieve their financial and life goals.

Strategic Plan

Our strategic plan aspires to provide a positive meaningful impact on our four stakeholder groups – our members, our community, our employees, and our volunteers. We will accomplish this through:

  • Acquisition: Support growth by attracting new stakeholders to the credit union
  • Development: Build quality relationships with the credit union’s stakeholders
  • Experience: Provide the credit union’s stakeholders with a world-class experience

News and Press

Governor's Excellence in Worksite Wellness Award

Each year, the Vermont Department of Health, together with the Governor's Council on Physical Fitness and Sports, recognizes Vermont employers which promote a work environment that encourages and enables employees to improve overall health.

NorthCountry has been selected to receive the 2019 Governor's Excellence in Worksite Wellness Award! We are very excited, as this will be our third year in a row receiving this award! We have been working very hard to promote wellness within our workplace to keep our staff happy and healthy.

 

Best Places to Work in Vermont

NorthCountry was recently named as one of the 2019 Best Places to Work in Vermont! The annual list is created by Vermont Business Magazine, the Vermont Department of Commerce and Community Development, the Vermont Department of Labor, the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) - Vermont State Council and Best Companies Group.

The statewide survey and awards program is designed to identify, recognize, and honor the best places of employment in Vermont, benefiting the state's economy, its workforce, and businesses. The 2019 Best Places to Work in Vermont list is made up of companies ranked into small to medium and large employer categories. NorthCountry is proud and honored to announce we ranked #3 in the medium category for the second year in a row!

Check out this Vermontbiz article* and the Best Places to Work in Vermont* program for more information!

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Wall Street Journal Recognition

High-cost payday loans are no fun, so many U.S. employers have been working with financial institutions, like credit unions, to offer small personal loans to employees - with much lower interest rates. The Wall Street Journal wrote a detailed article about these worker-friendly income advance loans: “Part of what credit unions are founded to do is to provide small loans to people of limited means,” said Jeff Smith, NorthCountry’s director of credit administration, which works with over 30 employers in Vermont with a combined 4,700 employees. “We are breaking even with this program. It certainly achieves part of what we are founded to do.” Read the full article Here.

 

 

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our Blog!*

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