Chattanooga Convention Center

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Join Us in Chattanooga as We
Celebrate Our Credit Union Community!

Celebrate our credit union community and join your credit union peers from across the state as we gather to learn, share and enjoy our first in-person meeting in more than a year.

We’ll finally meet in person again and share stories and experiences and exchange ideas as we learn new things and reaffirm our commitment to everything we love about the credit union movement.

We’ll have amazing presenters who will offer actionable ideas and powerful motivation to implement what you learn for your credit union.

With fantastic entertainment and networking opportunities, this will be a hugely rewarding and memorable event and we can’t wait to see you there. Register today and we’ll see you in August!

  • Network with credit union peers.

  • Discover the latest products and services from vendors at the TCUL Exhibit Hall.

  • Play golf at the Chattanooga Brown Acres Golf Course.

  • Take actionable insights on diverse topics back to your credit union.

  • Enjoy the fantastic food and entertainment Chattanooga has to offer.



How to Set Your Followers on Fire

Denise Ryan

Raleigh, North Carolina-based professional speaker Denise Ryan is a motivational pyromaniac. Her infectious energy, humor, and enthusiasm set a room ablaze.

After earning millions for clients in the corporate world, Denise realized she had a talent for firing people up. She turned this gift into FireStar, a company specializing in enthusiasm. — Twenty years later, Denise motivates and energizes audiences across the US and Canada at conferences, virtual events, and annual meetings. Her engaging delivery partnered with her business savvy and humor leave audiences not only laughing, but with actionable tips.

Not your typical “motivational speaker,” Denise is genuine and real. But also highly skilled – she holds the title of Certified Speaking Professional (CSP), a designation awarded to fewer than 10 percent of professional speakers. She is also a Certified Financial Education Instructor and Health Coach. She is an author, keynote speaker, and most notably, a fire starter extraordinaire. FireStar’s unique programs are relevant, uplifting, and informative, addressing workplace issues such as dealing with change, effective communication, staying motivated, and motivating others. Denise’s infectious enthusiasm motivates the unmotivated and challenges the challenged. Consider yourself warned: FireStar programs are five-alarm scorchers.


The Last Lecture: The Story You’ve Never Heard & How It Changed a Credit Union for Good

Patrick Adams

CEO of the $300-million St. Louis Community Credit Union, Patrick is a credit union CEO who shouldn’t be alive. He will share what he has learned about what has become a literally life-changing experience for him and his credit union.

Patrick Adams has been in the credit union movement for 43 years and with St. Louis Community Credit Union for the past 32 and was appointed president/CEO in 2008. His efforts today focus exclusively on the strategic direction of SLCCU, which has witnessed substantial growth and high levels of financial strength. SLCCU maintains the highest level of name/brand awareness among St. Louis residents, has 60,000+ members and is one of the most active CDFI credit unions in the country. SLCCU serves the stressed and distressed communities of St. Louis City and nearby counties. Adams has spoken worldwide for 25 years, urging people toward a-ha moments that lead to success.


A Foolproof Board of Directors

Frank Drake

Franklin Drake has practiced in the Raleigh, North Carolina law firm of Smith Debnam Narron Drake Saintsing & Myers for 25 years, following a sixteen year practice specializing in creditor's rights, bankruptcy, and repossession law in Louisville, Kentucky. Mr. Drake graduated from the University of North Carolina in 1975 with a B.A. with honors and with his law degree in 1978. He has practiced in North Carolina, Kentucky, West Virginia and the federal courts of southern Indiana. For the last 38 years in 40 states, he has lectured regularly at practical training courses, bankruptcy and regulatory compliance programs and webinars. Sponsors include NASCUS, CUNA, NAFCU, ACUIA, AACUL, NCUMA, state regulators and more than two dozen state credit union leagues across the US. For the past 40 years, Frank has advised and represented most of the major secured and unsecured financers on secured lending, bankruptcy and regulatory compliance matters.

Critical Questions to Ask Along the Journey to Digital Transformation

Emily Engstrom

Every day, more credit unions are embracing digital transformation to deliver meaningful member experiences. Real-time data working in concert with years of intuition offers a powerful force capable of game-changing transformation. No matter where a credit union is on its digital transformation journey, there are a few key questions leaders must be asking: What behaviors are we trying to change? How does our transformation support our mission, vision, and values? Can our team handle the truth? How do we avoid SOS (shiny object syndrome)? Attend this session to explore these questions and strategies for jump-starting your journey, including:

  • Quantifying your readiness to become more data-driven
  • Tying data and analytics strategy to overall business strategy
  • Hiring key talent to support your transformation
  • Preparing data to support predictive analytics and models
  • Partnering with business units and marketing teams to activate data insights

Thrive: Turning Uncertainty to Competitive Advantage

Meridith Elliott Powell

Voted one of the Top 15 Business Growth Experts to watch by Currency Fair, a Top Sales Expert To Follow by LinkedIn, and Top 41 Motivational Speakers, and Top 50 Sales Speaker. Meridith Elliott Powell is an award-winning author, keynote speaker, and business strategist. With a background in corporate leadership and sales, her career expands over several industries including retail, healthcare, and finance. Meridith worked her way up from entry-level to earn her position in the C-Suite. She is a Master Certified Strategist, Executive Coach, and Certified Speaking Professional, a designation held by less than twelve percent of professional speakers. In addition, Meridith is an invitation-only author for LinkedIn, having published more than eight courses on their prestigious education networks.


Top Tier Band


Enjoy the sounds of the TOP TIER Band! TOP TIER is live music at the highest level! They provide the best of both worlds—a fun, high-energy party band, and a smooth, light jazz band, all in one!

Top Tier Band

Entertainment provided by DJ Cheryl Dellamedaglia!

Enjoy cocktails, hors d’oeuvres, and network with exhibitors and credit union colleagues.


Wednesday, August 18, 2021

8:30 am  – 12:30 pm — Golf Tournament + Luncheon

Brown Acres Golf Course
(Proceeds of this tournament to benefit Inheritance of Hope.)

1:00 – 5:00 pm — Registration

Credit Union Welcome Desk

5:00 – 6:30 pm — Welcome Reception

Hosted by Tennessee League President Fred Robinson.

An opportunity to enjoy cocktails, hors d’oeuvres, and network with exhibitors and credit union colleagues. Entertainment provided by DJ Cheryl Dellamedaglia!

6:30 – 7:30 pm —  Welcome Banquet

All registered attendees, guests, and exhibitors are invited to join the welcome banquet.

7:30 – 8:00 pm — Hall of Fame Awards Presentation

8:00 – 10:00 pm — Entertainment

Enjoy the sounds of the TOP TIER Band! TOP TIER is live music at the highest level! They provide the best of both worlds--a fun, high-energy party band, and a smooth, light jazz band, all in one!


Thursday, August 19, 2021

8:00 – 9:00 am — Networking Breakfast

8:00 a.m. – 12:00 pm — Event Registration

Credit Union Welcome Desk

9:00 am — Welcome to Chattanooga

Mayor Tim Kelly

9:00 – 10:10 am — Opening Keynote

Denise Ryan - How to set your followers on fire!

10:00 am – 1:00 pm — Exhibit Hall Open

11:45 am – 1:00 pm — Networking Lunch

Attendees, registered guests, and exhibitors are invited to enjoy lunch and network with colleagues.

11:45 am – 1:00 pm — TCUL Past Chairmen's Lunch

By invitation

1:00 – 2:15 pm — General Session

Patrick Adams
The Last Lecture: The Story You’ve Never Heard & How It Changed a Credit Union for Good

2:15 – 2:30 pm —  Refreshment Break

2:30 – 3:30 pm — General Session

Frank Drake
A Foolproof Board of Directors

3:30 – 4:15 pm — Rodney Hood, NCUA Board Member (invited)

4:15 pm — Evening on your own to explore Chattanooga

Friday, August 20, 2021

7:00 - 8:00 am — Continental Breakfast

Enjoy a continental breakfast in the pre-function area.

7:30 - 8:00 am — Delegate Registration for Annual Meeting

8:00 – 8:45 am — Annual Business Meeting

Tennessee League Business Meeting
Fred Robinson, President’s Report

8:45 – 9:15 — The Financial Impact Credit Unions Have in the Market

Troy Stang, President/CEO Northwest Credit Union Association

9:15 – 10:00 am — General Session

Emily Engstrom, Director Client Success of AdvantEdge Digital
Critical Questions to Ask Along the Journey to Digital Transformation

10:00 – 10:30 am — Hotel Check-Out Break

10:30 – 11:30 am — Closing Keynote Session

Meridith Elliott Powell
Thrive: Turning Uncertainty to Competitive Advantage

11:30 am – 12:00 pm — Event Close

Closing Remarks and Door Prize Drawings


All Golf Tournament Proceeds will Support Inheritance of Hope

Inheritance of Hope provides an opportunity for distressed families to learn about shaping their legacy and offers tools to help each member of the family successfully navigate this difficult period in their lives. Inheritance of Hope believes that “Every Family Deserves a Legacy.”®

“Our goal is to provide families with an experience that they will remember forever,” said Deric Milligan, Co-Founder & CEO of Inheritance of Hope. “Seeing the direct impact of Inheritance of Hope on me and my children in the wake of losing Kristen has been very affirming. I can clearly see the importance of the work we’re doing on a daily basis.”

Learn more at


Safety and Wellness

The goal of this conference is to host a safe event that brings the credit union community together. To ensure the highest level of safety for all attendees and guests we will have the following measures in place:

  • Anyone who is feeling unwell or has had exposure to COVID-19 is encouraged to stay home. We want to see you soon when it is safe to return.
  • Masks will be encouraged and hand sanitizer will be readily available.
  • Signage and information will be posted encouraging precautions.
  • We will utilize a wristband system to indicate an individual's social interaction comfort level.