Don't overpay, save today ... with our 5 Star Loan Review!

Sep 2, 2016

The editors of Wi-Fi recently sat down with Sue Vanek, Branch Manager of Widget Financial's 26th Street office. Sue has been an employee of the credit union for 13 years and has managed her current branch for the past two.


Widget: What’s something people would find interesting about you?

Vanek: Probably that I am a mommy to two beautiful pups! I get a lot of compliments on the pictures of my little guys. 

Widget: They certainly look fierce! Are they guard dogs? Joking, of course. What breed are they?

Vanek: They are my sweeties and wouldn’t hurt a fly! They are Boston Bull Terriers. I just love their temperament. They definitely are a full part of the Vanek household. If I could have a herd of these loyaldogs, I would!

Widget: Loyalty is a great place to start! You obviously have lots of experience at our credit union, but you also came to the credit union with prior experience in the financial industry, didn’t you?

Vanek: I did! I started in banking when I was 19, but I’m not going to say exactly how long ago that was!

Widget: Sue, your office is one of the busiest in the entire credit union. To what do you attribute the success of this branch?

Vanek: It has everything to do with our staff! I took over in my current roll for a legend at the credit union, a veteran and beloved employee, Mr. Ted Willis. While I had some stops in between, I had the privilege of working alongside Ted as his Assistant Manager for a number of years. What I can remember most from those days is exactly the same thing we have worked diligently to continue today; we always try and have a smile for every member-owner who walks in the door and we truly want to be here for them for all the financial situations in their lives.

Widget: The members seem to respond well to that extra caring that your team has …

Vanek: Absolutely! People always remember how you treat them. When you go out of your way to show courtesy and respect for everyone, the word gets around and people are loyal to that.

Widget: Loyalty to the credit union has many forms, doesn’t it?

Vanek: Yes. I am referring to the fact that so many members trust us with all their financial affairs. They look to us first for savings options, as well as for all their lending needs. In life, you remember the people with whom you have made a real connection.

Widget: Recently, the credit union introduced a program that can save members a lot of money. It’s called 5 Star Loan Review. We were hoping you could elaborate on some of the great interactions this has brought to your branch. But perhaps we should have you explain a bit about it first!

Vanek: Sure, I’d love to. 5 Star Loan Review is a loan consolidation program. It is built to provide a way for our team to quickly and easily gather a snapshot of a person’s entire financial picture. It only takes about a minute to sign up for, and it is entirely free. Our team of lenders goes to work, looking for any loans in that person’s life, wherein we can possibly save them money. Sadly, so many of our members have loans in their lives that they are overpaying for! But thankfully, we have this unique program that in many cases, lets us offer to lower the rates that they may have with other lenders, all while bringing their payments into one convenient location, right back here with their trusted friends at Widget Financial. 

Widget: That’s wonderful! Have you been able to help a lot of people with 5 Star Loan Review then?

Vanek: Oh yes! Quite a few. The other day, some longtime members came to see me for a totally unrelated reason. I suggested to this couple that we should run a quick and easy 5 Star Loan Review and see if they might be overpaying for their loans. I was able to see that they had a substantial loan with another lender. Once I showed them just how much they could save by bringing that loan to Widget Financial, they were thrilled! What they thought was really cool was that they didn’t even have to stay to get the process started or to finish the paperwork! From there, we took the process entirely online and they even signed the documents remotely! Being able to help people like this is what the credit union is all about.

Widget: It sure is! That is a great example.

Vanek: I want to add that I just think people need to save money now more than ever … Times are tough financially for a lot of people and everyone, no matter their circumstance has a minute to let their credit union try and save them money. I can’t think of anyone who wouldn’t appreciate lowering their monthly payments on the loans they may have with other lenders. Even $20 per month adds up and can make a difference! Just yesterday, I met a man who allowed us to bring over a small personal loan he had with another local financial institution. He is now saving $50 each and every month! I am obviously passionate about helping members with this. I think I just like knowing we have made a difference.

Widget: Sue, that is very evident and in many ways, seems to be he hallmark of the credit union and especially, your branch! Thank you so much for making the time to sit down with us!

Vanek: I hope it helps create some positive word-of-mouth! “Widget can save you money!” I am happy to make the time to get that word out. As long as any picture you take of me is on a good hair day!

Widget: Most definitely Sue! Thanks to your entire team here at 26th Street for all they do in serving our membership and for the engaging way you help every member of the credit union you interact with … Oh, and your hair always looks great, by the way!