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Desert Schools Promotes Meshey to President

Desert Schools Federal Credit Union has announced the appointment of the organization’s new president, Jeff Meshey. Desert Schools’ current CEO and President, Susan Frank, will retain the title of CEO and remain in the foremost executive leadership position. A former senior executive vice president and veteran of Desert Schools, Meshey assumes the role following 20 years with the company, all of which have been under Frank’s tenure.

Meshey has long been a key contributor to Desert Schools’ immense success in the Arizona market, leading the charge to expand the organization’s presence across three counties. Prior to the economic downturn in 2008, he was instrumental in leading the growth of the credit union’s branch network, helping to move the organization’s area of service solely from school employees to a full community charter, now serving any member of the community who lives or works within the three counties that the branches occupy.

“I’m incredibly grateful for the opportunity to move further into a leadership role within Desert Schools and am humbled by the organization’s faith in me,” said Meshey. “I believe in being both a leader and a servant for our members and employees, and I look forward to continuing to make a difference in my new position.”

With $3.8 billion in assets, more than 300,000 members and 50 branch locations across Maricopa, Pinal and Gila Counties, Desert Schools Federal Credit Union assumes the title of largest credit union in Arizona.

Twelve recipients were awarded a scholarship through the Desert Schools Community Service Scholarship program.

Desert Schools awards more than $40K in scholarships

Desert Schools Federal Credit Union has announced the recipients of this year’s Desert Schools Community Service Scholarship. In all, eight high school seniors and four college freshman were awarded scholarships totaling $42,500 for his/her volunteerism within the community.

Through Shine On, Desert Schools 75th anniversary celebration, the organization has pledged to give back more than $1 million to the community this year. These scholarships have helped bring Desert Schools closer to its goal, with a total donation of $502,943 to date.

Each scholarship recipient had to display a passion for helping others in need and an excellence in education. Helping children and animals in need, volunteering time at libraries and Valley teen centers, and participating in revitalization projects are just some of the ways this year’s scholarship recipients have given back to the community over the past year. In total, these 12 students have volunteered more than 1,200 hours and don’t have any plans to stop volunteering any time soon. With the help of Desert Schools’ more than 300,000 members, Desert Schools is able to help lift some of the financial burden associated with going to college.

“We’re thrilled to be able to reward students that share our values and actively give back to the community, “said Desert Schools CEO Susan Frank.

This year’s $10,000 high school scholarship went to senior Jacob Osmundson, who recently graduated from Ironwood High School. Jacob has volunteered more than 150 hours with the International Baccalaureate Program helping to tutor students in math, reading and science. High school senior Emily Hawbacker was awarded a $5,000 scholarship and the remaining six high school recipients received $2,500. They include: Joseph Jacquez, Emily Judson, Megan McWherter, Kaela Meyer, Alexis Williams and Alexandra Stitch. Matthew Wall is this year’s big winner among the college freshman. Matthew received a $5,000 scholarship to help him continue pursuing a degree in Criminal Justice at the University of Arizona. One day, Matthew hopes to work for the FBI or CIA. The three other college freshman, Andrew Hayes, Madeline Lynch and Margaret Hardin received $2,500 to help continue their education.

Students who are interested in applying for the 2015 Desert Schools Community Service Scholarship should start their volunteer efforts now to help build up their community service hours. In addition to volunteering, recipients must maintain a 3.0 GPA or higher to be eligible to apply for the scholarship program. Applications will start being accepted this fall. Visit www.desertschools.org/scholarship for details.

In addition to spotlighting students with scholarships, Desert Schools is also shining a light on Arizona and saying thank you throughout 2014 by awarding monthly prizes to members of the community, along with providing $75,000 in grants to six local charities. Visit www.shineonaz.org to learn more about the effort and join the 75th anniversary celebration.

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Desert Schools Honored For Community Service In Arizona

Desert Schools Federal Credit Union, the largest not-for-profit membership-based financial institution in the state of Arizona, announced today that it has been selected by Toastmasters International and the organization’s District 3 Governor as the 2012 award recipient for community service and leadership for the state of Arizona.

This is the first time Desert Schools has been recognized by Toastmasters, a globally recognized, international nonprofit educational organization that operates clubs worldwide for the purpose of helping members improve their communication, public speaking and leadership skills. The organization has more than 270,000 members and over 13,000 clubs in 116 countries.

Desert Schools will be presented with the Toastmasters International 2012 award for community service and leadership on Friday, May 18th. Cathy Graham, vice president of marketing at Desert Schools Federal Credit Union, will accept the award on the credit union’s behalf.

Desert Schools has built its foundation on a fundamental passion for lending a personal hand toward positive change throughout Valley communities and encourages its employees to get involved in the same philanthropic spirit on which the organization has prided itself since its founding.

The Desert Schools ‘CommuniTeam’ – a group made up of dedicated employee volunteers – is active throughout Valley communities and offers Desert Schools’ employees the opportunity to volunteer their time and philanthropic talents throughout the community. Participating in nearly 130 community projects in the Phoenix metropolitan area, 45% of Desert Schools’ employees got involved with or led community projects in 2011, volunteering 2,902 hours to support various causes.

Susan Frank, President and CEO of Desert Schools, said, “We couldn’t be more honored to accept this award from an outstanding organization like Toastmasters International. Giving back to our community has long been the cornerstone of Desert Schools’ business. The time that Desert Schools staff is able to spend year in and year out doing good throughout our Valley is something that we’re very proud of, and it means that much more to be recognized by such an extraordinary philanthropic organization.”

In 2011, the credit union coordinated fundraising efforts with employees, vendors and partners to give back more than $770,000 to the community. Desert Schools raised $360,285 for the Children’s Miracle Network, $224,178 for the United Way and $96,000 in community grants in 2011 alone.

The credit union also awarded $30,000 in community service scholarships to high school seniors and college freshmen for demonstrating dedication to their studies and continued education as well as their commitment to giving back to the community. Scholarships were awarded for Fall 2012 coursework.

For more information on Desert Schools Federal Credit Union, visit Desert Schools’ website at desertschools.org.