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Alternatives Federal Credit Union is proud of the many awards we've received locally and nationally in recognition of our achievements.

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2018

Editor's Choice Award for social responsibility from BadCredit.org

Top Institution for Smart Credit Options that Help Low-Income Borrowers from CardRates.com

Community Beautification Award for Business from Cornell Cooperative Extension

2014

Voted #1 Community Development Financial Institution in the USA by the National Credit Union Association

2013

Tompkins County Workers' Center
"Friend of Labor" award to Leni Hochman, COO, for implementing the Living Wage Study.

2012

NerdWallet's Top Community-Focused Credit Unions

2011

Wachovia Wells Fargo NEXT Awards for Opportunity Finance Advocacy for the Living Wage Study.

Sustainable Tompkins' Signs of Sustainability Award
Our Small Business Loan Fund helps small businesses by giving them a chance to compete in a more financially feasible manner.

The Earn, Save, Share program through Alternatives was created to teach students from low-income families about financial education and personal enterprise. The program allows students to practice their learning about building savings and money-management skills through small-scale entrepreneurial projects.

Wachovia Wells Fargo NEXT Awards for Opportunity Finance
Runner-up to the top prize for $5 million

2010

Good Neighbor Award
Awarded by GIAC (Greater Ithaca Activities Center)

Distinguished Recycler Award
"In recognition of a Partner with an effective and comprehensive recycling program that maximizes the capture of materials that can be recycled in Tompkins County," by Tompkins County Solid Waste.

Wachovia Wells Fargo NEXT Awards for Opportunity Finance
Runner-Up to $5 million prize

Sustainable Tompkins' Signs of Sustainability Award
Alternatives' "Green Team" tackles projects to make our business more sustainable. One of our internal projects was reducing electricity use, which so far as produced yearly savings of 26,800 kilowatts.

Alternatives signed on with Tompkins County Solid Waste Management as a ReBusiness partner. Alternatives has implemented an intensive recycling program, keeping 88% of the company's trash out of landfills.

2009

Outstanding Volunteer of the Year
Awarded to Yvette Rubio, Board of Directors President, by the Credit Union Association of New York

PEGASYS Award for Talk Show Programming
This award went to Ithaca DSA Presents, produced by Theresa Alt & John Coleman. The show featured Joe Cummins, Community Development Educator at Alternatives, discussing children saving money and teaching adults money management.

$2 Million Award, Community Development Financial Institutions Fund
The award will support the expansion of Alternatives' current educational programs. It will also allow for additional debit consolidation and mortgage refinancing to community residents who have loans at significantly higher interest rates, and may have difficulty obtaining credit elsewhere.

2008

Alternatives was able to upgrade the Alternatives VISA Debit Card software in 2008. This purchase has been made possible, in part, by a grant from the New York Credit Union Foundation.

2007

Hall of Fame Award and Pinnacle Award, New York State Credit Union League
Awarded to Bill Myers, CEO. Pinnacle Marketing Awards recognize outstanding marketing efforts by credit unions across the state during the past year.

Corinne Galvin Award, Tompkins County Human Rights Association
Awarded to Alternatives CEO Bill Myers, "for an individual's work on a human rights issue."

Community Service Award, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority

2006

Golden Mirror, CU Executives Society
For Alternatives' annual report

Diamond Award, CUNA
First Place and Best Use of Art for annual report.

CU Lender of the Year, SBA Southern Tier Region

Best Bank in Ithaca, Ithaca Times
Readers' Annual Vote

Dora Maxwell Award, NYS Credit Union League
For the Living Wage Study

Pinnacle Marketing Award, NYS Credit Union League
Best in Show for Annual Report

Top Federal Credit Union Lender in the Southern Tier, SBA Awards

ELLY Award of Merit winner, CUNA Center for Professional Development
For the Credit Path Seminar

Serving the Underserved Scholarship to NYIB

Volunteer of the Year Award, Education Credit Union Development Educators
Awarded to Bill Myers, CEO

2005

Credit Union National Association Diamond Award
First Place-National Level, for exceptional creativity, design and content for 2003 Annual Report

Dora Maxwell Award
First Place-New York State, for Social Responsibility for the West End Mural.

2004

Desjardins Youth Financial Education Award
First Place, for The Student Credit Union, in recognition of its leadership in youth financial education, given by the New York State Credit Union League & Affiliates.

Desjardins Youth Financial Education Award
First Place - National Level, for The Student Credit Union, in recognition of its leadership in youth financial education, given by the Credit Union National Association.

Louise Herring Award for Philosophy in Action
First Place, for the Alternatives Credit Path®, awarded by the New York State Credit Union League.

Louise Herring Award for Philosophy in Action
Second Place - National Level, for the Alternatives Credit Path®, awarded by the Credit Union National Association.

Recognition from the Department of Treasury, Internal Revenue Service
for Alternatives' Free Tax Preparation program, for outstanding effort, dedication and contribution in building stronger communities.

Wachovia Community Development Financial Institution Award of Excellence
to Alternatives, for excellent in innovation, given by the National Community Capital Association.

Annie Vamper Helping Hands Award
Received by Bill Myers, CEO. The highest recognition given by the National Federation of Community Development Credit Unions for his deep commitment to the CDCU movement throughout his professional career, promoting the ideals of cooperation and voluntary service both domestically and internationally.

Pride of Ownership Award
to Alternatives for the Mural of the West End circa 1900, given by the City of Ithaca and the Ithaca Rotary Club.

2003

Dora Maxell Award for Excellence in Community Involvement
First Place, for the Free Tax Preparation Program, from the New York State Credit Union League.

Desjardins Youth Financial Education Award
First Place, for The Student Credit Union, in recognition of its leadership in youth financial education, given by the New York State Credit Union League.

Desjardins Youth Financial Education Award
Honorable Mention - National Level, for The Student Credit Union, in recognition of its leadership in youth financial education, given by the Credit Union National Association.

The Ithaca Times Best of Ithaca Award
for "Best Bank to do Business At."

Educator of the Year Award
Received by Bill Myers, CEO for contributing significantly to the New York State Credit Union Foundation's goal of educating consumers and credit union staff, given by New York State Credit Union League.

New York State Credit Union League Award
Received by Bill Myers, CEO, for 25 years service, in recognition of outstanding service and dedication to the credit union's mission.

2002

Pride of Ownership Award
for Alternatives' new building, presented by the City of Ithaca and Ithaca Rotary Club.

2001

The Diamond Award for Excellence
The highest award given from the Credit Union National Association, for Alternatives' 1998 Annual Report.

Ithaca Housing Authority Recognition
to Mary Zeigler, Community Partnership Lending, in appreciation for Alternatives' contribution to the Three Pillars Foundation Program.

2000

The Renaissance Commission Award
to Bill Myers, CEO, in recognition and appreciation of distinguished service on Credit Union National Association Renaissance Commission.

National Community Capital Association Recognition
to Bill Myers, CEO, in grateful appreciation for service on the Board of Directors (1997-2000).

1999

Louise Herring Award
First Place, for exemplifying "philosophy in action" for Alternatives' Individual Development Account Program.

1998

The Ithaca Times Best of Ithaca Award
for "The best place to trust the clerk's opinion" - "You know you're in Ithaca when you can ask a teller for financial advice. Be honest and you'll get honesty in return, at least there. You may not make a million, but will be in very good company…"

1997

The Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Diversity Leadership Award
for the Credit Union's efforts and success in employing a staff that reflects the community it serves.

Louise Herring Award
for our Community Partnership Lending program, a perfect example of the philosophy of people helping people, promoted by Louise Herring herself, awarded by the New York State Credit Union League.

1996

Louise Herring Award
for excellence in incorporating the "people helping people" philosophy for our Student Credit Union.

Community Change Agents Project
accepted our manager, Bill Myers, to the project sponsored by the Center for Community Change. The project is a year-long, rigorous learning experience in management and leadership development for directors of community based organizations.

Green Business Pledge
awarded by Co-Op America, to businesses that pledge to "conduct business according to standards that reach beyond contemporary practices in addressing the needs of consumers, employees, the community and the environment."

1995

Bridge Award
Honorable Mention, from NYS Credit Union League, awarded for Alternative Currents, our monthly member newsletter, for "Excellence in Member Education Communications."

1994

Tompkins County Human Rights Award
for achieving a priority goal of diversifying our staff.

Friends of Labor Award
for being a friend to labor, awarded by the Tompkins Cortland Labor Coalition, for diversifying our staff, and for our livable wage study.

Louise Herring Philosophy in Action Award
for our diversification of staff. "Your Credit Union's commitment to the community and your membership is something of which the whole movement can be proud."

1993

Bridge Award
for Alternative Currents, edited by Leni Hochman, "for excellence in Newsletter Communication 2-color or less"

1992

Dora Maxwell Award
for our RoundOff program, where members can easily donate "spare change" to the non-profit organization of the month, awarded by New York State Credit Union League.

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