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Dan Marquez- The Sky is the Limit

Updated: Jul 10, 2019

Dan Marquez has spent his whole life being part of a credit union, both as a member and an employee. We were able to chat with Dan about why this industry is where he wants to be, why we should all go through DE training, some of his favorite highlights from crashing the GAC and CUNA’s most recent YP Conference. Dan is a ray of light in this crazy busy world, always willing to chat, listen and most importantly tell his story! This is just a sneak peek at who Dan is; we will be collaborating with him more in the future!

How did you get your start in the credit union industry and what keeps you here?

I first got started in the credit union movement as a young child when my mother opened my account as she worked at a local credit union. Many years later, I was encouraged to apply by the MSR's at that same local credit union where I would make deposits and conduct business. In 2012, I began my journey and immediately had a passion for the philanthropic and community work credit unions were committed to. I witnessed firsthand the credit union difference as a 'credit union kid', growing up with a sense of family and community. That pride and tradition is what keeps me around. Understanding that credit unions exist to protect and serve communities and special interest groups for financial health and success is what drives my passion.

You beam with pride when talking about being a DE – tell us why we should all become one and what was the biggest thing you learned while attending that training?

DE training changed my life in so many ways. I attended DE in April 2018, Best Class Ever. I think we often hear young professionals deeply impacted by all experiences and conferences engineered towards change and innovation. This experience was truly one that I cannot compare to any other personal or professional workshop or conference. Myself, like all attendees, gained the valuable perception and understanding of the credit union operating principles and development issues in our communities that we strive to better. I feel that everyone should aim for the opportunity to attend DE for the purpose of learning the how and the why of the movement as a whole. The biggest lesson I learned is to 'Trust the Process'.

Want to know more about the DE Program? Check it out here

We met you at the CUNA YP conference; tell us the most eye-opening thing from that conference!

The most eye-opening experience from YP Con was attending a conference specifically targeted to the young professional audience. This conference embodied the vision and aspirations of industry young professionals providing resources and networking, two of the most important tools. I learned so much about maintaining momentum when the going gets rough by remaining bold, passionate and resilient.

Have you crashed before, if so what conference and what was it like?

I crashed the GAC in 2017 under the direction of James Marshall, Ariel Bilsky, Matt Vance, Lindsey Hodson and Andy Janning. This conference was really the gateway to everything that has unfolded in my professional career. A week full of advocacy training, networking, collaboration, emotion and introduction to the entire credit union network. This conference experience opened my eyes to credit union young professionals and the leverage and power we all have to drive the credit union movement into the next phases. When I attended I was one of FEW who were not in middle or senior management, rather working a teller drawer. Through this realization is how I met Lois Kitsch, who began her journey as a drive thru teller, when she delivered an intro to the DE program to our Crash Class. I knew then that the sky's the limit and there was no ceiling we couldn't breakthrough with hard work, dedication, and passion.

Tell us a bit about what you are involved in outside the CU industry?

Outside of work, I enjoy spending time with my rescue Pitbull, Honey. I also enjoy binge watching Queer Eye and RuPaul's Drag Race in my down time. I am also a vocal entertainer in the community as Dan Marquez, as well as my drag persona of Nymphadora. Nymphadora is a huge credit union advocate serving executive realness through a fresh take on delivering the credit union difference to communities and professional networks. It is a passion of mine to empower LGBTQIA+ individuals within the community through expression. Nymphadora exists to share hope with industry professionals to be comfortable with celebrating pride and to champion diversity, inclusion and equity in the credit union space. Stay tuned for more from Dan and CUltivate on how the credit union industry can get more involved in LGBT inclusion.

CUltivate is people helping people with our mission to spread the word, connect the people, and give an outlet to share your stories. Know someone in the industry we should interview? Drop us a line at #CUltivateTheMovement

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