Ten days after being sworn in on January 8th as the 25th NCUA Board Member, Tanya Otsuka attended her first National Credit Union Administration board meeting.
The meeting, which was open to the pubic via livestream, gave the newest member of the board the opportunity to voice her opinions on some issues and initiatives facing the administration.
In her opening remarks, Otsuka expressed her excitement at attending her first board meeting and her thanks to current board members Chairman Todd Harper and Vice Chairman Kyle Hauptman, as well as former NCUA board member Rodney Hood.
Hauptman, who joined following the nomination of former President Trump, spoke highly of Biden’s nominee, complimenting both her business acumen, her personality, and her qualifications. “Tanya probably shows up with more knowledge of these sorts of agencies having worked not only at the Committee that has oversight, but at the FDIC,” said Hauptman.
Moving on from introductions, Director of the Office of Minority and Women Inclusion Miguel Polanco presented the NCUA Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility (DEIA) Strategic Plan for 2024-2026.
Speaking on the topic, Otsuka asked Polanco whether there are barriers that members from under-represented and marginalized communities faced serving on credit union boards, and how the NCUA can support to attract diverse board members. Polanco said, “From our work with the industry we have found that some credit unions’ boards may still reflect their original fields of membership and may still need to evolve to match the changing demographics of the regions they serve.”
Otsuka thanked Polanco for his response and suggested the NCUA could do more to help the marginalized interested in serving on their credit union boards find ways to do so.
The last item on the agenda was the NCUA’s 2024 Annual Performance Plan. Following initial discussion of the topic, Otsuka shared her remarks. “I want to point out that technology is important in our changing financial system, but it is critical for us to make sure that technology is used in a safe and sound manner, and that it does not harm members or result in the violation of consumer protection laws. . .The NCUA should be ensuring that credit unions are appropriately engaging in overseeing third-party vendors and technology providers to mitigate and manage risks. So I just want to highlight that as something that I’m concerned about and focused on.” Otsuka went on to speak on the importance of CDFI credit unions.
The Board approved the Performance Plan in a 3 to 0 vote.
As the meeting wrapped up, Otsuka took a moment to thank former Board Member Hood for his years of public service to the NCUA and the many initiatives he led as a member of the administration.