Browse by Type

Blog Post |

Filene Announces the New 2019 Filene i3 Class

The legacy of developing new ideas, innovations and top talent for credit unions continues.

Twenty-three credit union leaders have been accepted to the 2019 Filene i3 program. These emerging leaders will kick off their two-year development journey to address some of the biggest issues facing the credit union industry at Filene’s annual big.bright.minds, taking place this November in Durham, NC.

“Continuing on a 15-year legacy of fostering the development of new ideas and innovations for credit unions, it is an honor and privilege to announce the next wave of i3ers,” said Mark Meyer, Filene President & CEO. “Over the next several years, the new i3 class will continue to expand on the strong foundation of innovation and creative problem solving the program is known for, while broadening their leadership competencies to help transform the credit union industry.”

Filene i3 is an innovation accelerator that connects the brightest minds with cutting-edge ideas to help credit unions change their members’ financial lives for the better. The ultimate goal of i3 is to strengthen credit unions by casting the innovation net into the world, providing the space, diversity of thought, connections and methodologies that create actionable and forward-thinking change.

“Joining i3 offers me the opportunity to set aside my day-to-day responsibilities and problem solve really big, industry-wide challenges,” said Lauren Kessler, PenFed Credit Union’s Customer Experience Strategist and 2019 i3 class member. “Having that level of impact and collaborating with peers from other organizations is an opportunity unique to the credit union industry. We are stronger together and i3 is the network that brings it all together.”

Joining the ranks of more than 260 credit union leaders within the Filene i3 community are:

  • Joe Agostinelli, Vibrant Credit Union, VP of Analytics & Insights
  • Kirun Amiri, Kinecta Federal Credit Union, Director of IT Operations
  • Rudy Arceo II, Envision Credit Union, VP of HR Development and Training
  • Sarah Brenner, Andigo Credit Union, VP of Marketing
  • Marisa Conley, Member Cooperative Credit Union, Vice President of Member Experience
  • Lindsey DeBartelo, Blackhawk Community Credit Union, Director of Innovation
  • Jerry Eichhorst, TDECU, Digital Experience Executive
  • Kyle Gallacher-Turner, Rivermark Community Credit Union, Card & Digital Services Manager
  • Saeed Goraya, Tucoemas Federal Credit Union, VP of Strategic Member Engagement
  • Eric Gubka, Member Driven Technologies, Training Manager
  • Jim Hossfeld, SchoolsFirst Federal Credit Union, Manager, Membership Development
  • Michelle James, Pen Air Federal Credit Union, Vice President of Product Research & Delivery
  • Lauren Kessler, PenFed Credit Union, Customer Experience Strategy
  • Jake Kiker, WilliamsGautier Law Firm, Shareholder/Partner
  • Annie Lepper, Minnesota Power Employees Credit Union, Vice President of Operations
  • Erin Malekadeli, Members First Credit Union, Innovation Strategist
  • Matthew Metzger, Redwood Credit Union, Technology Solutions Manager
  • Briana Mickelson, Washington State Employees Credit Union, Director of Contact Center
  • Elizabeth Seelbach, Resource One Credit Union, Marketing and Website Manager
  • Mark Volz, Corporate Central Credit Union, Relationship Development Officer
  • Justin Weiler, CU Direct, Implementations Analyst
  • Jason Witt, MAC Federal Credit Union, Director of Lending and Member Services
  • Wilson Wizalamu, Cent Cent Savings and Credit Cooperative Society Limited, Head of Secretariat

Filene i3 members commit to completing four cycles of problem solving, each cycle spanning six months, to brainstorm, test and launch products and solutions designed to address key challenges credit unions are facing. The i3 groups will deliver outputs for each project cycle and have an opportunity to connect with i3 alumni and industry leaders at Filene events. This year’s class will finalize their tenure in December 2021.

Filene is proud to have the support and partnership of CU Direct and Korn Ferry to ensure the i3 program continues to grow and thrive. As sponsors of i3, CU Direct and Korn Ferry emphasize how vital it is for the industry to stay relevant through cutting-edge innovations and fostering top talent and leadership.