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About Us Our History

Nothing can be more challenging than recounting a history of an organization like Coast Central Credit Union. Since its beginnings, our credit union has had more threads of information, data and perceptions than found on the amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. Ask anyone who has been a member for some time - you'll hear a different perception of our credit union's history each time.

In this retelling of our history, we have drawn on actual minutes and the memories of Board members and long-time credit union members who have watched the tremendous growth of our financial institution over an almost sixty-year span. All persons and records have pretty much agreed with one premise: the credit union movement has been alive and well here on the North Coast since the 1950s.

Planting Our Roots
Even though we found some records of several Grange credit unions in Humboldt and Del Norte counties that were started as early as 1939, our actual credit union's roots can be traced back to the Humboldt County Employees Federal Credit Union (HCEFCU) which started in 1950. According to minutes kept by Evanne Wheeler, Dorothy Shirek-Smith was our first Charter member. Dorothy was elected as the Board's President and served on the Board until 1971.


1950: Humboldt County Employees Federal Credit Union (HCEFCU) was formed.

1959: Klamath-Trinity Community Credit union was formed in Hoopa. This became a part of our credit union "tree" twenty years later.

1964: Steve Antongiovanni was appointed part-time Treasurer-Manager and took over the books.

1968: HCEFCU opened an office at 5th and O Streets, Eureka.

1971: HCEFCU paid its first quarterly dividend in May.

1971: Eureka City Employees Federal Credit Union liquidated and members joined HCEFCU.

1972: HCEFCU purchased the building located at 3rd and K Street, Eureka where it operated its office and rented space to Simpson Redwood Federal Credit Union.

1973: Steve Antongiovanni was hired as full-time Treasurer-Manager of HCEFCU. He later became President/CEO and continued until his retirement in 1990.

1974: HCEFCU published its first monthly newsletter, "The Forerunner."

1974: 21 credit unions coexisted within our current tri-county area. Of those, twelve merged with HCEFCU (later to be named Coast Federal Credit Union).

1974: HCEFCU pledged a $25,000 share deposit in the new Redwood Central credit union.

1974: Redwood Central held its first meeting in September.

1975: HCEFCU celebrated its 25th anniversary and completed a merger with Medical Employees Federal Credit Union.

1975: Opened an office in St. Bernard's High School, listed as Member Services Branch #3.

1976: NCUA approved a name change of HCEFCU to Coast Federal Credit Union.

1976: Rented five offices in Dinsmore Building (one for Redwood Central, one for Simpson and three for Coast's "oversized operation").

1977: Coast Federal opened an office in Crescent City.

1978: Coast Federal opened an office in Valley West Shopping Center, Arcata.

1978: Klamath-Trinity Community Credit Union merged with Redwood Central Credit Union.

1978: Redwood Central Credit Union opened office in Rio Dell and closed it shortly after.

1979: Redwood Central (a state-chartered credit union) and Coast Federal (a federally chartered credit union) merged. The merged entity became Coast Central Credit Union, a state chartered credit union, on July 18th. As a "community chartered" credit union, Coast Central's field of membership included all of Trinity and Del Norte counties and a portion of Humboldt county.

1980: Arcata Plywood Federal Credit Union merged with Coast Central Credit Union.

1981: Opened offices on Harrison Avenue, Eureka and on Main Street, Fortuna.

1981: Trinity Alps Community Credit Union merged with Coast Central Credit Union.

1981: Opened a new member services branch in Weaverville.

1984: Brought checking account processing in house (previously handled by Security Pacific).

1984: Coast Central became a California corporation on March 19, 1984.

1987: Converted to UltraData Systems as our mainframe data processor.

1987: Opened a new member services branch at 4th and J Streets in Eureka.

1988: Opened a small member services branch in the Bayshore Mall, one of the first financial institutions to be open seven days a week.

1988: Expanded community charter to include most of Humboldt County.

1989: Opened a new member services branch in Hoopa (originally operating out of a motel room) at the former Security Pacific location.

1989: Began our own ATM network and became the first financial institution to have ATMs in local Safeway and Co-Op stores.

1989: Opened a new member services branch in Willow Creek.

1989: Remodeled and expanded our Harrison Avenue member services branch.

1990: Steve Antongiovanni retired as President/CEO. Dean G. Christensen became the new President/CEO of Coast Central Credit Union.

1992: Expanded Arcata member services branch to double its original size and added an ATM.

1993: Opened a larger member services branch in the Bayshore Mall.

1994: Community charter was expanded to include all of Humboldt County, allowing Coast Central to serve all the residents of the tri-county area.

1994: Added ATM in Eureka's Costco, only to lose it in 2003.

1995: Moved to new Glenn Street location in Weaverville.

1995: Added ATMs in the Bayshore Mall's Food Court and in Willow Creek.

1997: Opened online banking service for members. We were among the first 50 credit unions in the country to offer this service to members.

1998: Opened a small office in Ray's Food Place in McKinleyville, serving members seven days a week. Office included an ATM.

1998: Added ATMs in the Eureka Co-Op store and at our Weaverville member services branch.

2003: Added an ATM at our Hoopa member services branch.

2005: Remodeled and expanded our Weaverville member services branch.

2005: Groundbreaking ceremonies held for new two-story member services branch and Member Support Center on Central Avenue, McKinleyville.

2007: Michelle Rector, Board member since 2001, resigned and was replaced by Diane Leiker. Leiker served as a member of the Supervisory Committee since 1985 for 20 years as its Chair.

2007: The new 33,000-square-foot member services branch (and Member Support Center) on Central Avenue, McKinleyville was completed and opened its doors on Monday, June 25th.

2007: Reached $700 million in assets on July 11.

2008: Established a $100,000 annual Community Investment Program. Awarded the first $50,000 in May.

2008: Launched E-Statement and E-Alert services to members in August.

2009: During one of the worst economic declines since the Great Depression, the NCUA enacted its "Corporate Credit Union Stabilization Act" and took conservatorship of the two biggest corporate credit unions including WesCorp. This forced Coast Central to restate its December 2008 financial statements.

2011: Opened a 12th member services branch in downtown Arcata (Uniontown Shopping Center).

2012: Kristin Zeller was appointed as Vice President, Member Services as Ches Meierding retired after 25 years of service.

2012: Launched a new state-of-the art online banking, bill pay and mobile banking service on March 20th. 2013: Started the year acquiring the California members and assets of Chetco Federal Credit Union. This put us over a billion dollars in assets and over the 60,000 member plateau.

2013: We added text banking to our suite of mobile banking products in March.

2013: Ed Christians was appointed as Vice President for Information Systems, replacing Glenn Powell, who retired after 32 years of service.

2013: Dean Hart was appointed as Vice President for Marketing and Communications, replacing Dennis Hunter, who retired after 18 years of service.

2014: Bob Moore was appointed as Vice President of Member Loan Services/Chief Credit Officer, replacing Dean Charlton, who retired after 27 years of service.

2014: CheckFlash (A Remote Deposit Capture product for depositing checks from mobile devices) was successfully launched in March. In three months, over 3,000 transactions were made, totaling $1.4 million in deposits.

2014: Were recognized as “Best Bank or Credit Union on the Northcoast” for the 13th year in a row by the Times-Standard readers. Received five total awards; Best Bank, Best Credit Union, Best Investment Firm, Best Mortgage Company, and Best Real Estate Lender.

2014: Were recognized for the seventh consecutive year as “Best Financial Institution” by readers of the Triplicate (Crescent City).

2014: Diane Leiker, Board member since 2007, chose not to seek re-election and Robin Bailie was elected to the vacant position. Leiker also served as a member of the Supervisory Committee from 1985 to 2007 (20 years as its Chair).

2014: Pat Brown, Board member since 1980, resigned after 34 years of service. Brown served as Chairman of the Board from 1992 to 2008.

2014: Bauer Financial, the nation’s leading bank and credit union rating and research firm, awarded Coast Central their prestigious Five Star rating for the 80th consecutive quarter (20 years). Furthermore, Coast Central earned an even more elite designation as a “Sustained Superiority Credit Union,” a privilege reserved for only 9% of the nation’s credit unions.

Federally Insured by NCUA