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Idaho - Open for Business

In April Governor Brad Little announced his reopening plan and created the Economic Rebound Advisory Committee, comprised of business leaders including Kent Oram, President/CEO of Idaho Central Credit Union.

How did you get started in the financial industry?

I grew up working on the farm and knew I didn’t want to do that forever.  In college, I studied computers and began working as the Data Processing Manager at ICCU in January 1984.  I continued to grow in various positions throughout my career at Idaho Central and was promoted to CEO in October 2007.

What is it that you are most proud of in your work?

I am proud of the Green Team and the tremendous work we do on behalf of our members and our communities. We are important to their financial security. We are a safe place – a place of refuge. We are predictable even when everything seems to be unpredictable.

What is the current situation with financing for businesses, homeowners, and investors?

Many people have experienced hardships over the past several months.  We have been there for our members with skipped loan payments, relief loan options, the PPP program and have helped in many other ways on a case-by-case basis.  We are optimistic that our economy and affected members will be able to recover as we find ways to live with this virus present in our world.  It is very rewarding to be able to help our members during this time.

The future is unpredictable, but loan rates are strong.  People are still buying cars and homes.  Many of our members who have not had a history of saving, are able to put money in their savings accounts. We remain flexible to adapt in this changing, unprecedented environment.

How are financial institutions meeting the current needs of residents and businesses?

COVID-19 has forced us to change our internal processes, but hasn’t stopped us from providing the services our members need. We have shifted to focusing more on our electronic services and many members appreciate being able to transact without stepping foot in a physical branch location.  We have shifted job responsibilities of some team members to cover the increases in certain areas of business that have increased as a result of member service modifications.

On a personal level, what is something you are passionate about away from work?

I love spending time spending time with my wife, Dawnette, and our family, playing racquetball, water sports, snowmobiling, and trail riding. 


 

What is your advice for the younger generations and how to handle their finances?

TIP 1: Establish a budget - When you don’t track your finances, you have no idea where your money is going and can easily spend more than you earn. 

TIP 2: Save automatically - Setting up automatic savings – it puts your extra cash out of sight and out of mind. 

TIP 3: Start investing - The earlier you start investing, the more time your money has to grow and the more potential you’ll have to earn. 

TIP 4: Review your expenditures - At least once a year, review what you’re spending and see where you can cut costs or adjust.

TIP 5: Biggest tip of all. Trust people. Believe in those around you. Give people the benefit of the doubt. Have a big heart. Love your work and your co-workers. Enjoy what you do or go do something else.


 

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