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Credit union president retiring

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ORNL Federal Credit Union President and CEO John McKittrick is planning to retire.

Chris Johnson will take over the reins of the credit union effective April 1.

Presently chief operating officer and vice president, he has been with the credit union since 2006.

A reception in his honor is planned from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. March 30 in the Oak Ridge main office. Credit Union members as well as members of the community are welcome to stop by.

Light refreshments will be ser-ved.

McKittrick began at ORNL Federal Credit Union in 1989, when he assumed the position of operations manager.

In 1993, founding credit union President Bob Candler retired after 31 years of service. With board approval, he named McKittrick as his successor and the second president in the history of the credit union.

At that time, assets were more than $300 million, membership was 47,000, and there were seven branches.

Under McKittrick’s leadership, the credit union has grown to more than $1 billion in assets, 150,000 members, and 32 branches.

“I am grateful to have had the privilege to serve as the credit union’s president, and I take pride in staying true to the credit union mission of People Helping People,” McKittrick said.

“I’ve had the support of our many volunteer board members and a great staff of executives and employees over these many years,” he added. “I am particularly pleased that we have grown, but most importantly have done so keeping member service a priority while remaining financially sound. In these uncertain times as ORNL Federal Credit Union faces the future, our size and strong capital position provides an important strength on which to build.  

“I leave with great comfort and confidence in the board’s selection of Chris Johnson, who has a proven record of leadership and accomplishment.”

Some of the many changes the credit union faced during McKittrick’s tenure were the first community charter in Tennessee awarded by the National Credit Union Administration, allowing for an expansion of the field of membership; a highly successful credit union service organization, CU Community LLC, that opened a new line of services for credit union members as well as other credit unions; legislative changes, including the passage of a bill that allowed continued membership growth for credit unions; the credit union’s survival through Y2K, and a host of new and innovative products and services.

Caring as much for the credit union movement as he did his community, McKittrick served on the board of the Tennessee Credit Union League, assuming the role of chairman in 2007.

He was an active member on the board of directors of the Oak Ridge Chamber of Commerce, for which he served as chairman in 2004. He is presently chairman of the East Tennessee Economic Development Agency.

Other community work includes American Heart Association, East Tennessee Economic Council, Anderson County Development Corp., Oak Ridge Industrial Development Board, Roane State Community College Foundation Board and the University of Tennessee Chancellors Associates.

In recognition of his community service and professional achievements, the Oak Ridge Chamber awarded McKittrick with the 2010 Eugene L. Joyce Lifetime Achievement Award.