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National Recognition Awards Program

 

 

Dora Maxwell Social Responsibility Recognition Award

The Dora Maxwell Award has honored credit unions for their charitable works in their communities.  Some credit unions have ongoing programs and establish a special relationship with local social service agencies or school programs.  Other programs address many different needs in the community.  No matter the size or scope of a project, each participating credit union builds its reputation as a good corporate citizen along the way.

Credit unions enter the Dora Maxwell Award program in one of seven asset categories or the chapter category.

Louise Herring Award for Philosophy in Action

The Louise Herring Award has commended credit unions that make exceptional efforts to include credit union philosophy in their daily operations and member service.  Programs that provide financial education to particular member groups within the credit union or special assistance to low-income members struggling to pay heating bills, for example, are clear examples of the philosophy that sets credit unions apart from other financial institutions.

Entrants in the Louise Herring Award program compete in two asset categories.

To Enter

Send your entry to Cynthia Dunn at your League by August 1.  First place winners will advance to the national competition.  National winners will be honored at the Governmental Affairs Conference in Washington, D.C., the following February. 

Secrets of a Winning Dora Maxwell or Louise Herring Award Program Entry

Since 1987, the Dora Maxwell Social Responsibility Recognition Award has honored credit unions for their charitable works in their communities. Some credit unions have ongoing programs and establish a special relationship with local social service agencies or school programs. Other programs address many different needs in the community. No matter the size or scope of a project, each participating credit union builds its reputation as a good corporate citizen along the way.

Beginning in 1990, the Louise Herring Award for Philosophy in Action has commended credit unions that make exceptional efforts to include credit union philosophy in their daily operations and member service. Programs that provide financial education to particular member groups within the credit union or special assistance to low-income members struggling to pay heating bills, for example, are clear examples of the philosophy that sets credit unions apart from other financial institutions.

Here are a few secrets for entering either of these award programs:

  • Review the program entry form carefully and answer all of the questions relative to the one project you selected in the original format provided. The scoring is based on these elements, so the more information you provide in direct response to the questions, the higher your score.
  • Read the rules, and make sure you're entering the appropriate competition. Remember Dora Maxwell entries should focus on community involvement or social responsibility programs external to the credit union. Louise Herring entries should be based on your credit union's internal programs, and provide examples of how you put philosophy into action for your members.
  • Make your entry easy to read and easy to follow. Include the name of your credit union on the front cover of the binder. Use a table of contents. Avoid handwritten entries, and use standard fonts no italic style or small print. Print items you want read on white paper and refrain from printing on hard-to-read colors, such as magenta, purple or neon orange. Misspellings leave a bad impression, too.
  • Clearly identify who is involved in your project. Who did the work? Who were the beneficiaries? How many people were reached? While giving donations is admirable, the judges also look for strong volunteer involvement from staff within the credit union at all employment levels.
  • Bigger isn't always better. Keep your entry to a manageable size. Keep it fresh include current activities only, not programs or events from several years ago.
  • Include samples or descriptions of the promotional materials related to the entry, not for your used vehicle sale or most successful loan promotion. Please avoid electronic media.

For more information, contact Cynthia Dunn at 800-572-7359 or 423-899-2425, extension 1204, or visit http://legacy.cuna.org/awards/maxwellherring.html.

   
Desjardins Awards Program

The Desjardins Youth and Adult Financial Education Award program to recognizes leadership within the credit union movement on behalf of financial literacy for all ages. The recognition program considers all activities supporting the personal finance education of members and nonmembers, including, but not limited to, face-to-face teaching using proprietary materials and curricula such as the NEFE High School Financial Planning Program® (HSFPP) as well as financial literacy leadership efforts.

Naming the award after Alphonse Desjardins emphasizes the movement's long-time commitment to youth. Besides founding the first credit unions in Canada and the U.S., Desjardins pioneered youth savings clubs and in-school "banks," known as caisses scolaires.
 
The updated award program materials can be found on CUNA’s website at http://www.cuna.org/, scroll to the bottom left side of the page, click on “About CUNA,” then click on “Maxwell/Herring/Desjardins Award Programs.”
 
You can view PDFs of winning entries from the past 4 years by going to this link -- http://www.cuna.org/awards/youth_desjardins_winners.html.  By clicking on the list of winners, they can view each of the entries, and will have a much better idea of what it takes to win in the national competition.
 
General Information
 
The general period of time that the award period covers is for relevant activities that took place between June 2013 and June 2014. Using this or a comparable timeframe will ensure that the entries represent current programs and projects. 
 
The 2013 Awards Committee spent time after the judging event to discuss the entries and what impressed them.  Many of their comments have been incorporated in “A Letter from the Judges” and “Secrets to a Winning Entry,” which are also included within the Program Packet


Entry Form Requirements
 
Each entry must address each of the three mandatory criteria listed on the entry forms. For each criterion, we ask that the submission be limited as follows:
 
·         A 1-page narrative, which the judges will scrutinize
·         Up to 5 pages of primary evidence, which the judges will read
·         An optional appendix of secondary exhibits, which the judges will skim
 
By following the above submission suggestions, the judges are able to quickly find and focus their attention on the particular programs and the impact they had (i.e., how many people/groups have been taught using the materials? were there any measurable results?).

 

Refer to theCUNA Award Differentiation Chart, which explains the differences between the programs and also shows activities pertinent to each.
 
Entries must be received by your League by August 1.
 

 

 

       
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Phone: 423-899-2425  or  800-572-7359
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