By Matt Harrelson | email@example.com
HAMLET — The State Employees Credit Union in downtown Rockingham won’t be the only one of its kind in Richmond County come fall. Construction on a second branch is under way on U.S. 74 Business beside Sandhills Regional Medical Center.
The new credit union is tentatively scheduled to be finished by October, according to its future manager, Lisa Talley. Although the building may be new to Richmond County, Talley is definitely not.
“I’ve been here a long time. On July 8 I celebrated my 30-year anniversary with SECU,” she said. “I started at the Rockingham branch when it opened in 1985 as a teller. I worked there for nine years as a teller at that branch.”
Talley said she’s always had the ambition to move up in her career but didn’t want to move too far away from Richmond County — so she waited for an opportunity.
She transferred to the Laurinburg branch after Rockingham and commuted to Scotland County for four years starting in 1994. She remembers the date because she was pregnant with her daughter when she started working there.
In 1998, she became the manager of the Wadesboro branch, a job she still holds today.
“I’ve been up here for 17 years now in Wadesboro,” said Talley. “I’ve always wanted to get back to my area so that’s why I’m excited to get back to Hamlet. I hate leaving this branch because I have a really good branch, and I have long-term employees, but I’ve always wanted to get back there, so I’m excited about the opportunity.”
Talley is well qualified to run the new Hamlet branch as she has an associate degree in business administration from Richmond Community College, but she also furthered her career by actually working at the credit union.
“I got a credit union executive designation, and that is what allowed me to advance and become a manager with the credit union,” she said. “It’s like credit-related courses, but it’s all geared toward credit union information. That’s really what helped me become a manager.”
In addition to garnering those titles with the credit union, Talley is also a registered investment representative and a trust officer. She’s looking forward to the test of running a brand-new branch in her hometown.
“I’ve always lived in Rockingham, but I like the challenge of moving to that branch,” Talley said of Hamlet. “We do a little bit of everything. We’re tax preparers as well as licensed insurance agents.”
Talley will also be in charge of hiring the entire staff for the new branch and hopes to have that process done much sooner than the opening date in October.
“We do have some employees that want to transfer from other branches, which is great because you want trained employees,” she said. “We have to do an internal posting. We want to make sure all the current employees have a chance before we hire outside employees. I would say within two weeks that I should know. I’m ready to get people hired and trained. There’s a lot of training that goes on.”
On a state level, the credit union also sees the new branch as a job creator and a chance to expand its membership in Richmond County.
“State Employees Credit Union is looking forward to the completion of the new branch in Hamlet, allowing us to serve our membership with even greater accessibility and convenience through a second location in Richmond County,” said Jamie Applequist, SECU executive vice president of branch operations. “The new branch will also provide additional jobs for the area, giving SECU the opportunity to further benefit the economic welfare of the Hamlet community.”
Reach reporter Matt Harrelson at 910-817-2674 and follow him on Twitter @mattyharrelson.