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Cheers to 35 Years of Research and Innovation for Credit Unions!

Celebrating 35 years is a testament to the strength and collective spirit of our members and the dedication and passion of our team. It’s been a rewarding and remarkable journey to see just how far credit unions have come. But looking forward, there’s so much more we can do. Let’s embrace this milestone as a launchpad for innovation, as we set our sights on shaping the future of credit unions for the next 35+ years.

Filene is proud to mark its 35th anniversary of incorporation this year. Since its founding on May 31, 1989, Filene has been at the forefront of research, innovation, and thought leadership, driving positive change and advancing the credit union system.

As we celebrate this significant milestone, we reflect on the journey that has brought us here and the future we are building together. Our success is a testament to the collaborative spirit of our members and the dedication of our staff. I am humbled by the lasting impact we have made together in the financial lives of millions of people.

Over the past 35 years, Filene has been instrumental in shaping the credit union landscape through its cutting-edge research and incubation testing of new ideas and viable solutions. However, it is truly the community of credit union leaders and innovators who drive impact from Filene’s body of work -- fostering growth, knowledge-sharing, and innovation -- which has empowered credit unions to better serve their members and communities.

In honor of this anniversary, we invite our members and the credit union community to a celebration in Boston, the birthplace of namesake Ed Filene, this July during Filene’s “Spark! 2024” event.

A few statistics in honor of this milestone include:
  • Celebrating Research: Since its founding, Filene has produced 613 research reports in partnership with staff, researchers, fellows, university partners, authors and industry experts. The first report published by Filene, “Field of Membership: An Evolving Concept,” helped lay the groundwork for H.R. 1151, the Credit Union Membership Access Act, which greatly increased the potential for credit unions to serve millions of additional Americans.
  • Celebrating Innovation: Since the launch of the Filene i3 program in 2004, there have been 208 new ideas and concepts developed across 20 waves of more than 350 credit union innovators. One idea in 2006 explored prize-linked savings, which in less than 10 years, led to over $70 million saved by consumers who might not have saved it otherwise. The concept's success also influenced legislative changes in more than 30 states.
  • Celebrating Membership: There are 77 credit unions, leagues/associations and system partners that have been part of the Filene membership community for more than 30 years. Today, Filene’s membership serves more than 71 million credit union members and represents more than $1.17 trillion in credit union assets.

2024 also marks the 20th anniversary of the Filene i3 program, and the 15th Crash the GAC. The continued success of these efforts is a testament to the foresight of Filene's supporters as well as to Filene's hyper-relevance and lasting influence. Filene will continue to highlight and celebrate these programs and their participants over the coming months.

We are incredibly grateful for the support of our members and community over the years. Here's to another 35 years of thinking forward and changing lives.

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