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Introduction | Community Giving | A Commitment To Members | Board of Directors


Meridian Credit Union officially opened its doors on April 1, 2005 following the merger of two of Ontario’s largest and most successful credit unions — Niagara Credit Union and HEPCOE Credit Union. Its amalgamation with Desjardins Credit Union under the Meridian banner on June 1, 2011 significantly increased its size.

Ontario’s largest credit union, Meridian has 263,000 members, consisting of close to a quarter of a million personal financial services members and nearly 21,000 business members. Meridian has $11 billion in assets under management, and a network of 67 branches and eight business centres in communities around Ontario. In addition to in-branch banking, online banking and access through their smartphones, members can access Meridian’s services through THE EXCHANGE® Network of over 2,400 no-fee ABMs across Canada.

Meridian is a member-owned institution guided by cooperative values and principles. Membership is open to all residents of Ontario. A major competitor in Ontario’s financial services industry, Meridian is dedicated to reinventing neighbourhood banking by offering extended operating hours, building long-term banking relationships with members in their communities, and ensuring decisions are made at the local level.

In January, 2015 Meridian was recognized as one of the Achievers 50 Most Engaged Workplaces™ in North America. Achievers' panel of judges evaluated applicants on the basis of the Eight Elements of Employee Engagement™: Communication, Leadership, Culture, Rewards & Recognition, Professional & Personal Growth, Accountability & Performance, Vision & Values, and Corporate Social Responsibility.

Community Giving

As a caring company, Meridian is focused on giving back to the communities from which it draws its membership, and investing in causes that make a real difference to the people of Ontario. Local direction guides Meridian's community investment decisions, making sure they meet the specific needs of families and businesses in each of its unique communities.

Meridian's activities are conducted through its Commitment to Communities program, which focuses on financial literacy and investments in local organizations, businesses and activities. The program commits to strengthening communities, to ensuring that Meridian employees are supported when they donate their time, skill and resources, and to improving the environment in the communities where Meridian is located.

Meridian has made a $5.26 million, 25-year commitment to The Meridian Centre, a 6,000 spectator capacity arena in St. Catharines, Ontario and home to the Ontario Hockey League's Niagara IceDogs. The arena is also a venue for concerts, family events, conventions and trade shows. Other commitments include Meridian's sponsorship of events meant to improve the financial literacy of local entrepreneurs, its support of post-secondary education through the Commitment to Communities Sean Jackson Scholarship, and its support of the Ontario Association of Food Banks.

A record $266,000 was contributed by Meridian employees during the United Way's 2014 campaign. Contributions came from employee payroll deductions and fundraising activities including bake sales, raffles, bingo games and silent auctions. This sum included a corporate donation of $100,000 through the Commitment to Communities endeavour.

A Commitment To Members

Local branches continue to be the cornerstone of member and community relationships. Meridian ensures that branches reflect its warm personality and personal approach.

Through the branches, retail and small business members receive competitively-priced products and services which meet their personal, business and wealth management needs. Branch staff take the time to get to know members and their financial needs in order to help members develop sound financial plans. At Meridian’s seven commercial banking centres, staff familiarize themselves with member businesses and provide them with customized solutions drawn from Meridian’s full range of commercial banking services, which include daily banking products, complementary lending services, cash management solutions, and investments.

Meridian believes in the power of local decision-making. It streamlines management levels and implements an industry-leading employee training and skills development program to make sure the majority of decisions are made at local branches – not at a head office hundreds of miles away. As a result, decisions on loan, mortgages, lines of credit and sponsorships are made by branch managers, and account managers at Meridian’s seven commercial banking centres bring an intimate knowledge of their communities to dealings with members.

Meridian’s approach improves speed, responsiveness and agility when it comes to helping and responding to members’ needs, and provides solutions that are perfectly customized to fit their specific financial lifestyles.

In 2013 Meridian and three other Canadian credit unions, working with Central 1 Credit Union, launched Deposit Anywhere™, a mobile banking application which enables customers to deposit cheques using their smartphones. In doing so the four credit unions became the first financial institutions in Canada to offer this service.

Board of Directors

The Meridian Board members are elected by members and focused on a blend of financial accountability and member service optimization. Prospective new boardmembers, solicited for nomination from among Meridian membership, and returning boardmembers are elected to the Board by Meridian’s members for three-year terms.

The members of Meridian’s Board of Directors are:

John Murphy — Chair
Colleen Sidford — Vice Chair
Don Ariss
Ken Bolton
Jeff Chesebrough
Larry Doran
Karen Farbridge
Mark Kraemer
Ross Lamont
Richard Owen
Tamara Paton
Phoebe Wright

® THE EXCHANGE is a registered trademark owned by Fiserv Inc., licensed for use in Canada by FICANEX Services Limited Partnership.

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