Celebrating Women’s History Month: Q & A with Linda White


Women’s History Month is a time to recognize and celebrate women’s contributions across American history, society, and culture. The credit union movement is fortunate to have many female leaders and professionals serving members every day. The California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues invite some of these women to reflect on their own careers and how we can better support future women in the credit union industry. 

A Q & A with Linda White, CEO at Upward CU

How long have you been in the credit union industry?
44 years. I started out as a teller, promoted first day from receptionist to teller and worked my way up to supervisor before taking a brief break. At your credit union? Started with Upward in 1985 when it was just over $3 million and no services, so 37 years this June. I became the CEO in 1998. 

Who are some female role models or mentors who have inspired you either personally or professionally?
Sue Mitchell who has always pushed many women to get out there and stand up! And for me, drive me to do more than I realized. Jean Faenza, someone I’ve known since my first credit union who has been there through thick and thin; Miss D, who is a pillar of strength and fierce; and my mom of course, who was always there to listen no matter what. I know she was beyond proud of me for working my way up and being independent.

What is an exciting project going on at the credit union today?
At Upward it is preparing for my retirement/transition out of the CEO role. Really developing a financial wellness program that fits us! Focusing on what we can do to help change our members lives financially. 

What do you hope your legacy will be for your credit union or the movement as a whole?
That I did my part to empower our members and staff. To pay it forward as it was done for me.  

What advice would you give to future female credit union leaders?
Find your people; those that you can share anything with. Be vulnerable, humble, and transparent. BE YOU and not who someone else thinks you should be. 

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