Anne McClure
CEO Cabrillo Credit Union

Anne McClure has an impressive title as Chief Operating Officer of Cabrillo Credit Union.  However, the title pales in comparison to how impressive the woman is.  Anne has spent 26 years with Cabrillo alone and several additional years in the banking industry.  A native of Southern California, she attended Poway High School and didn’t leave the San Diego area until she went away to college at UC Santa Cruz for a year, completing her college degree at UC Irvine in a total of 3 ½ years. The mother of three, Anne has shared her work ethics with her children who all worked throughout school.  "I never believed that my kids should not work.  You have to be able to multi-task in real life, so I felt it was a good life lesson for them to work their way through school.” 

With a career working her way up the corporate ladder in the banking industry, I was curious if this was the field in which she had hoped to spend her career.  “I didn’t come into banking as a career move.  Ironically, it was at the suggestion of a teller who I happened to start a conversation with while cashing my check from the two jobs that I held in college.  She noted that I was working multiple jobs and commented.  I jokingly said I would work more if I could.  I was currently paying my room and board to attend college while my parents took care of my tuition, but I was still coming up short and really wanted to make more money.  She suggested that I could if I applied for a job with the bank.  So, I took her advice and I did. I was hired, and the rest is history."  

What Anne has always believed is that no matter what position you hold in a company that you should always work as hard as you can and stand out as the best in that position.  Whether you are a high-level executive or a beginning teller, it is important always to give it your all, because you never know who is watching.  "I found out about a position at the credit union through somebody that I used to work with at the bank, again reinforcing my belief that you are always making an impression regardless of the position you hold.  He referred me to their CEO at the time. She was introduced to the credit union system and decided that this was a change she wanted to make. “Credit unions are in business to serve their members/customers. In fact members are at the top of the org chart in a credit union. That’s very different than a bank, who is in business for its stockholders, and the customers aren’t even on the org chart.”

Anne joined Cabrillo in 1992.  “I came onboard as the research compliance and training manager, and within a couple of years I took over marketing and was juggling those different responsibilities.   A few years after that, human resources became more of a need in the organization, and I took that on  as well.  I was wearing many different hats, which was kind of fun. In a small organization like Cabrillo was at the time, I never was bored handling a number of departments. As we grew it became evident that we needed an additional body, and I was given a choice whether I wanted to go to the marketing side or the human resources side.  I had done marketing for a  while, so I chose Human Resources which included training, an area I loved.”

Cabrillo has been in existence since 1955. They began as a credit union that served the Border Patrol and their original name was “Border Federal Credit Union.” In 1976 The Credit Union changed its name from Border Federal Credit Union to Cabrillo Federal Credit Union. In 2003 they merged with Sharp Federal Credit Union, so they have a large contingency of Sharp Employees. In 2004 Cabrillo merged yet again, this time with Carlsbad City Employees Credit Union.  Today this credit union is open to serve anybody who lives or works in San Diego as well as Federal Employees in Imperial County . For more information visit their website at www.cabrillocu.com.

Anne is very proud of her employer in all that they do for their members.  “I have seen a lot of changes in the credit union over the years. Cabrillo has always been progressive, introducing new products and services and is always on the cutting edge of technology.  Being smaller than the large banking establishments, we could make changes more easily.  As an example, we were the first financial institution in San Diego to offer online banking back in the 90s.” 

You can tell when Anne talks about Cabrillo that she is extremely proud to be part of such an outstanding organization.  What makes her even prouder is what happens at her Credit Union in the month of May. In May credit unions around the country collectively raise funds for their local Children’s Hospital.  Twenty-two years ago Anne established ‘Credit Unions for Kids’ in San Diego.  She brought together San Diego Credit Unions to help support Children’s Miracle Network, in San Diego, it is  Rady Children’s Hospital. Cabrillo is consistently the largest fundraiser amongst the local credit unions.

“In our 21 years of fundraising for Rady Children’s, last year was our biggest year yet.  We raised more than $47,000!" The majority of funds raised came from paper balloons sold to members with the remainder a result of the hard work of Cabrillo employees who held department sponsored events and a silent auction.

"The atmosphere at Cabrillo is one of family.  Our employees have one thing in common, they love their jobs, and we see to it that we continue to make them feel that way." Statistics prove that the more content the employee is at their job, the more enjoyable a place it is to work, and ultimately the better service they provide.  This also increases employee retention, which is obvious by the long-term employees that remain at Cabrillo.  Robin Lentz recently retired after 37 years as CEO of Cabrillo Credit Union. New CEO L. Dean Odle joined Cabrillo Credit Union in 2017.

 

There is definitely one characteristic of Anne's personality which is evident from your first conversation with her. Anne is one of the most positive people I have ever met, so I had to ask her how she manages to maintain this wonderful part of her personality. “I have a positive outlook on life. I have always chosen to look through a lens of positivity.  I probably got this from my Dad and my faith.  It’s really a choice. You can choose to focus on the negative, or you can put your mental energy on all that is good. In the end, I am happier because of it.”

Anne McClure has spent most of her career with Cabrillo, moving her way up to her current position.  When I asked her what has inspired her, she spoke of growing up in a strong, loving family with a stay-at-home mom who didn’t go out to work until Anne was in high school. “When I got into high school my mom went to work in the school district. She was working as an instructional aide in Special Ed, and I remember her asking me to help make sure the house was picked up because she didn’t want my dad to think things were suffering because she was working. This made an impact on me. I understood the responsibilities that we tend to have as women; those are thankfully more shared now. I was proud of my Mom because she had this desire and motivation to pursue something that was her own. This brave move of my mother’s at the time kept me from feeling guilty about being a working mom. It is rewarding to raise your kids, but I had to have something on the outside that made me feel that I was contributing to society.”

 

As a result, I never really felt that ‘mom guilt’ about working outside of the house.  When my Mom feared that I might, she shared something I will never forget; she said, "Decide what you decide and then be all in.  Don't look back; don't second guess your decisions.  Never beat yourself up with the thought that if I stayed at home, maybe my kids would be better off." Anne looks back over her 26 years at Cabrillo with pride.  "Even as a working mom I have always been fully engaged in my kids’ lives. I didn't miss any of the important moments like when they took their first steps or uttered their first words, and I was always there for the water polo games or band performances. I certainly didn't miss anything that I felt was significant in their lives and alternately in my life.”

 

Anne McClure is proof that we can have it all. With a loving family, a devoted husband, and an important job there is one thing that I knew from the moment I met her,  this was a nice lady, someone I would want as a friend. Her pride in her family and her long-term place of employment is evident in her eyes when she speaks of them.  There is only one more thing I can say, and that is Cabrillo Credit Union should be immensely proud to have a woman of such character and charm at the top of their organizational chart.  For those at San Diego Woman, we can undoubtedly say Anne McClure is an Inspirational Woman.