Best Financial Institution in Clark County
Columbia Credit Union, a $1.06 billion asset community credit union, has been helping Clark County, Washington residents and businesses meet their financial goals since 1952. We are known for our friendly staff, competitive rates and environmentally minded services.
Voted Best Service Provider — Clark County favorite
Columbia was voted Best Credit Union seven years in a row in 2015 and Best Financial Institution/Mortgage 2009 - 2013 in The Columbian newspaper’s Best of Clark County reader poll. Columbia is a long-time community favorite, serving more than 80,000 members. In fact, more Clark County families choose Columbia than any other local financial institution.
We’re 12 Clark County, Washington locations strong! Plus, our extensive ATM network and free online and mobile banking services allow you to access your accounts anytime, anywhere.
Financial Needs Covered
Columbia is a full-service financial institution, offering all the services you need for both your personal and business finance needs including mortgages and investment services.
Columbia is consistently recognized for its superior service. According to a recent independent survey by Raddon Financial Group, 95.8% of our members are satisfied or highly satisfied.
Joining is Easy
Choose a financial institution that’s good for you, shares your values, and is recommended by others in our community. Columbia Credit Union membership is open to individuals or businesses in Washington State (and to the family members of eligible individuals), so eligibility is quite open.
A strong, member financial cooperative providing value through:
- Meeting members' needs with quality services and products
- Caring for members at every contact
- Enhancing the communities we serve through volunteerism and leadership.
Ultimately, we embrace the credit union difference by bringing people together to achieve a better life for themselves and their communities.
To be the most trusted, respected, and sought after financial institution providing value-based innovation, financial education and support to our member-owners, employees, Volunteers and communities we serve.
We adhere to an uncompromising standard of ethical conduct and integrity, including trust and respect for each other, our members and their communities.
We will be financially responsible in everything we do to ensure continued success.
We are fundamentally committed to serving our members, who are our foundation, by providing the highest standard of individualized service … always placing members first.
We recognize the importance of listening closely to our members and communities to better understand their unique requirements. Anticipating their needs and providing creative solutions are key to our mutual success.
We seek opportunities to involve members, allowing them to contribute to the credit union as a member.
We honor each person's ability to create and contribute toward the goal of delivering quality member service and innovative products, individually or as part of a team, through open communication and mutual trust.
Our culture encourages fun, friendly competition and support for one another.
We believe that our differences, as well as our unity, build character and strengthen our community, and that diversity adds value to our organization.
We support the courage, creativity, and discipline needed to lead change and bring value to the membership and the credit union.
We encourage creative thinking and continuous improvement because we must be better than our competition every day in order to attract and retain our members and employees.
We encourage continuing education and training for members, Volunteers and employees, recognizing that knowledge builds confidence and enables innovative thinking and wise financial decisions.
We challenge ourselves to build and support the communities we serve.
We accept responsibility for our impact on our environment.
We strive to be a socially responsible organization, recognizing we are all part of a community where our members and employees live, work and play.
We recognize that our community is larger than where our members live or work; it is also our industry, the community of credit unions.
Statement of Commitment to Members
Since 1952, Columbia Credit Union has been committed to our members. We uphold our fundamental responsibility to serve people within our field of membership and, as appropriate, the communities they live in. We deliver a range of products and services which reflect the diverse economic and social composition of our members and potential members. We continually seek better ways to reach out to the underserved in our field of membership and demonstrate the value of membership in Columbia Credit Union.
We communicate our service to members in a meaningful way, so members, potential members, legislators, regulators and the community at large will understand and appreciate the unique role financial cooperatives play in their lives.
Throughout Columbia Credit Union's strategic plan, we will put forth every effort to enable our members to become financially self-sufficient and successful. We will place high importance on consumer education and the teaching of financial thrift.
This Statement of Commitment to Members is consistent with our credit union principles of "Not For Profit, Not For Charity, But For Service" and our philosophy of "People Helping People." This statement represents good business practices that ensure the financial strength of our credit union on behalf of our members.
Section I: Service to Members
Columbia Credit Union strives to provide services that improve the economic and social well-being of all members from all socioeconomic backgrounds as well as services that return financial value.
Columbia Credit Union provides a financial information-rich website which includes products and services, identity protection information and tools, budget calculators, online loan applications and other valuable tools and links.
Columbia Credit Union members enjoy special programs such as our Holiday Club to help save for holidays or other goals and Achievers Club, to establish healthy saving habits for youth under 19.
Columbia Credit Union offers convenient, free account access and value-added features to its checking accounts. Two examples include our Free For All checking account designed for high-use, low-balance members, or RewardsPLUS checking with benefits for members age 50 years or better, including free ATM usage.
Online and Mobile Services
Online banking and bill pay, e-statements and mobile banking are free for Columbia members.
Columbia Credit Union offers ATMs at all of its branches as well as non-branch locations. In addition, members benefit through the credit union's participation in the CO-OP Network. The CO-OP Network offers surcharge-free ATMs at more than 30,000 locations across the U.S. and Canada, including popular retail locations such as Walgreens, Costco and 7-Eleven stores.
Business Lending Expertise and In-Branch Microloans
Columbia’s business lending department has knowledge of the local market, extensive business lending expertise and a genuine desire to help companies grow. We are an SBA Preferred Lender, and we also provide business microloans of $100,000 or less through our branch network.
In addition to a full range of business loans, members have the opportunity to bring their business deposit needs to Columbia Credit Union. We offer business savings, checking, money market, certificates and ancillary services.
In addition to traditional choices, members have unique mortgage options such as our custom construction, Living Green and RetireIt! programs. The My Community Mortgage Program and the Home$tart Program are designed for first-time buyers.
Green Loans & Sustainability
Columbia is recognized as a Clark County Green Business. Columbia Credit Union rewards members who drive environmentally gentle autos by reducing their approved auto loan rate. In addition, members may receive a home loan discount for energy-efficient homes. Offering our members a healthy branch environment is as important as optimizing the preservation of our natural resources. Columbia consciously operates in a sustainable manner and rewards members for doing the same. Members have access to two award-winning branches certified as Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold.
Investment and Insurance Strategies
Columbia's Wealth Management Department is staffed with Registered Representatives working with Cetera Advisor Networks. Members can make a no-obligation appointment at Columbia branches for customized strategies using non-deposit investment products to work toward their financial goals.
Columbia conducts member surveys and participates in benchmarking surveys on member satisfaction and product use. This information is valuable to ensure products and services meet members' needs.
Section II: Member Education
Columbia Credit Union is committed to member and consumer financial education. In addition, we are committed to educating the communities we serve about the credit union difference.
Free financial workshops are available throughout our branch network for members and non-members. Subjects include investments, insurance, debt reduction, home financing, budgeting and electronic service demonstrations.
Online Learning and Tools
Columbia's website offers a variety of online educational articles, free tutorials, calculators and tools to help Web-users learn smart money management tips.
Columbia produces an electronic member newsletter, to keep members informed of products and services, events and beneficial financial stories.
Section III: Governance
Columbia Credit Union is committed to preserving credit union democratic principles, including demographic representation and volunteer participation in credit union activities.
Meetings are held in the evening to enable the greatest attendance possible. They are also located at convenient locations with good parking, such as at hotels.
Columbia provides special training for Volunteers including in-house training, industry resources and conferences.
Columbia offers uncomplicated alternatives to encourage voting when there are more candidates than open positions. Along with paper ballots, Columbia also offers online voting.
Section IV: Diversity
Columbia Credit Union recognizes the value of demographic diversity in staff as well as in Volunteers. As such, we strive to bring people of diverse backgrounds and experiences into leadership and other roles at the credit union.
A Call for Applicants using newsletters, branches and community outreach is the first step in looking for Columbia's Volunteers. Columbia's Volunteers represent the communities we serve, and they are elected by the membership.
Columbia is well diversified in membership, like its community, and ensures segments have programs and services that meet their needs.
Equal Opportunity Employer
Columbia values the diversity of our local population and strives to nurture a work environment where everyone respects the dignity and work of their fellow employees. Columbia firmly upholds equal employment opportunity and job access for all individuals regardless of their race, ancestry, country of origin, creed, sex, color, nationality, religion, disability, the presence of any sensory, mental or physical handicap, age, citizenship, family or marital status, political beliefs, sexual orientation, veteran status or other factors included in human rights legislation on a federal, state and local level.
Section V: Commitment to the Credit Union Movement
Columbia Credit Union will work to build and strengthen our unique credit union movement by actively advocating the credit union difference at all levels of government and in other appropriate public forums.
Columbia promotes and provides support to our elected officials on the credit union difference. Involvement ranges from contributing to the Credit Union Legislative Action Fund; financially supporting the credit union movement; or participating in political and regulatory advocacy at the state and federal levels.
Columbia staff and Volunteers are encouraged to take an active role in the Northwest Credit Union Association, Southwest Washington Chapter of Credit Unions and other credit union leadership networks.
When opportunities exist, Columbia will work toward credit union cooperative advertising campaigns within the communities we serve.
Section VI: Community Involvement/Corporate Citizenship
Credit unions exist to provide financial services for improving members' lives and the communities where they live and work. Columbia Credit Union is committed to improving the quality of life for the families living and working in our branch communities. Through financial contributions and staff volunteering, Columbia Credit Union is committed to creating a strong, healthy community through support of civic and philanthropic causes.
Children and Families
Columbia believes in supporting and empowering children and families in many areas including crisis management, education, and opportunities for participation in safe, healthy and fun community events.
Columbia supports organizations that benefit the overall livability of Clark County and provide opportunities for the creation of jobs in positive work environments through development, networking and legislation.
Arts & Culture
Columbia believes that the combination of our differences as well as our unity builds character and strengthens our community. Through various outlets, our community is able to educate themselves about different cultures, beliefs and artistic styles.
Columbia supports organizations that work to improve the overall physical and mental health of our community members.
Poverty and homelessness is a reality for many in our community. We support organizations that offer assistance to help those requiring assistance, even our furry friends.
Columbia supports organizations that focus on providing green space for people and animals, ensuring a beneficial quality of life for current and future generations.
Columbia supports organizations that raise and distribute funds back into the community where it will benefit the overall livability of where we live, work and play.
Columbia Credit Union has a history of providing outstanding member service and has grown to become one of Clark County's leading financial institutions. Follow our growth and progression over the years from serving railroad employees in our founder's basement to where we are today.
In 1952, Delbert Thompson started the SP&S Federal Credit Union in his basement to serve SP&S Railroad employees. Delbert kept it on track for six years before the credit union grew into its first office and hired a president - Ed Gard, Jr. followed by Marvin Showalter. The charter changed in 1975, enabling the credit union to serve both railroad employees and community members. Thus, Columbia Credit Union took root.
Fruits of Innovation
As a progressive organization, Columbia has evolved to meet our members' changing financial needs by offering innovative products and services while updating old standbys. Our vision continues to evolve but serving our community and delivering value remains at the heart of our organization. In 1975, we were the first credit union on the West Coast to offer checking accounts, demonstrating a pioneering spirit and prompting a 20-year growth spurt.
We were among the first credit unions to offer innovative banking conveniences like ATMs, money market accounts, online banking, e-statements, online mortgage tools, business banking and wealth management. In 2011, we proudly introduced mobile banking, allowing members the convenience of banking from their mobile phones.
Sprouting Green Branches
In 2007, we embraced our environmentally friendly principles and became the first Clark County financial institution to build branches according to LEED standards set by the U.S. Green Building Council. We welcomed members to our sustainable Washougal and Grand Central branches in 2008. Today, our commitment continues with new procedures and standards planned to increase our sustainability while decreasing our environmental footprint throughout all our facilities. In 2012, we earned recognition as a Clark County Green Business for our Grand Central branch.
Community Giving Grows
We’re proud to contribute to the success of our members and our community. Our core purpose, “Making Life Better,” guides our approach to everything we do. Whether we’re making a donation to a worthy cause or performing volunteer service, we’re committed to improving the quality of life in our branch communities. In recognition of our efforts, we were awarded the 2012 Dora Maxwell Corporate Social Responsibility Award, the Greater Vancouver Chamber's 2012 Community Builder Award and Vancouver Downtown Association's 2013 Corporate Partner Award.
Community Commitment: Learn more about how and why Columbia is involved in our community.
Helping Members Flourish
Today, the credit union philosophy of "people helping people" is strong and thriving at Columbia. We listen and respond as only a locally owned financial institution can, and our members have noticed! According to our latest independent member survey, nearly 96 percent of members rate our overall service as "satisfactory or highly satisfactory." This rating is a benchmark for the financial institution industry! In addition, we were recently voted Clark County’s Best Financial Institution, winning the title five years in a row from 2009 - 2013 in The Columbian newspaper’s annual poll.
True to our roots
Columbia has served the financial needs of Clark County families since 1952. Throughout, we’ve cultivated strong ties to the community and grown 12 branches strong. While we're poised for additional growth and change in the future, we’re proud to offer members continued value, award-winning service and dedicated employees for all their financial needs.