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Simply Better with WMCU

About West Michigan Credit Union

West Michigan Credit Union is a not-for-profit financial cooperative chartered and regulated by the State of Michigan, founded in 1956. We are a local member owned and operated credit union. We serve the greater areas of Grand Rapids, Big Rapids, Reed City, Cadillac, and Manistee. WMCU is proud to offer a variety of products and services to make your financial lives Simply Better.

Working together as the most trusted resource to help our members' financial lives be simply better.

The WMCU Difference

Choosing a credit union is an important decision for your financial well-being. Credit unions are member-oriented financial cooperatives. At West Michigan Credit Union, you are more than an account number. You are part owner of our credit union which means you have a voice here. We care about your membership and are always looking for ways to improve your experience.

WMCU offers convenient shared branching, e-services, online banking, a mobile app, and remote check deposit to access your accounts wherever you are! We know how frustrating it can be when you go out of town and can’t find an ATM that won’t charge you fees, so we also give you access to thousands of ATMs in all 50 states when you use your WMCU debit card.

Because of our not-for-profit structure, we give back to our members by offering more products and services, great rates and lower fees.

Check out how we are giving back to your community!

Founding Members

History of WMCU

Founded in 1956, West Michigan Credit Union is a not-for-profit financial cooperative chartered and regulated by the State of Michigan. We are a local member owned and operated credit union governed by a Board of Directors elected by our members.

The credit union was first named West Michigan State Employees Credit Union and was housed in the Michigan’s Veterans Facility. The concept of the credit union was formed by a group of individuals, united by Jack Appel. Robert Benson joined Jack’s efforts to organize the credit union by establishing the appropriate licensing through State Treasurer, Sanford Brown. The organization began in a single room with a single volunteer worker, Marguerite Benson. Marguerite, founding member Robert Benson’s wife, was a part of the budding credit union from the beginning. When speaking with Marguerite, she remembered taking individuals names that were interested in becoming a member of the credit union.

Grand Rapids Soldier's Home

The Appel’s and Benson’s remained an integral part of the credit union, as it molded into a family affair. Marguerite Benson assisted the credit union in its formative years by offering her time as her husband Robert served as the credit union’s Treasurer until shortly after the credit union moved to the Coit Avenue location.

Jack Appel conceptualized the credit union based off of a need that was seen in the community for individuals to have a greater control over their finances. Jack’s wife, Kay served as the branch manager once on Coit Avenue. Thomas Appel, son of Jack and Kay Appel, recalls his mother sitting at the desk closest to the front door with a glass of iced tea, recognizing members as they entered the branch.

In a recent conversation with Tom Appel and Marguerite Benson, both recalled a growth in memberships based on the need of a trusting organization with better interest rates than other financial institutions. During the conversation, both Tom and Marguerite shared personal accounts of the loyalty their families still have with WMCU.

WMCU In Recent Years

While West Michigan Credit Union has grown in membership size and branch locations since 1956, we still value and maintain our mission to work together to be the most trusted resource to help our members’ financial lives be simply better.

Our members have access to a multitude of products and services, designed to make your banking with us simple and effective, meeting them in their current financial journey. Our members get access to better rates than most other financial institutions, giving them power over their funds. WMCU is proud to offer a wide selection of loans including; personal loans, auto loans, recreational vehicle loans, and real estate loans. We also offer a variety of savings accounts to best accommodate your savings goals. We are here to serve you today and help you prepare for tomorrow.

“Once a member, always a member”

That’s the West Michigan Credit Union way. We believe in treating our members like family, staying connected with them through job changes, moves, and retirements, allowing them to still retain full membership rights and privileges. We meet our members where they are at, help them to grow financially and celebrate in their successes with us.

A Timeline of WMCU History

WMCU Timeline with Dates

Meet our Board of Directors

2020 Board of Directors

Pictured from left to right: Daniel Vander Woude, Mike Ropele, Dan Titus, Brent Nevins, Dave Husted, Marlin Baker, Clare Kwant, and Shirlee Harry.

WMCU Leadership

Bill Keim Headshot

William Keim

President / Chief Executive Officer

Jeanie Smith Headshot

Jeanene Smith

Chief Operations Officer

Tom Kuzdzal Headshot

Thomas Kuzdzal

Chief Financial Officer

Cassie Patterson Headshot

Cassie Patterson

Chief Risk and Compliance Officer

Jenn Brigstock BusinessWear

Jennifer Brigstock

Vice President of Operations

Jared Naber VP of Lending

Jared Naber

Vice President of Lending

Renee Wawryzniak Headshot

Renee Wawrzyniak

Project Manager

Briana Vachon

Briana Vachon

Vice President of Human Resources

Working together as the most trusted resource to help our members' financial lives be simply better.