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Toledo, Ohio & Lake Erie

The Press Newspaper

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        Bay Area Credit Union and Edward Jones Investments financial advisor Dylan M. Clement were business winners at the 25th Annual Prism Awards hosted by the Eastern Maumee Bay Chamber of Commerce Tuesday at Sunrise Banquet Center.

        Bay Area Credit Union, which has 22 employees, was honored by the Prism judges with a General Excellence Award, which is based on performance, creating opportunity for employees and customers and engaging in civic and community involvement.

         Bay Area Credit Union, formerly known as Sohio Toledo Refinery Credit Union, got its start in 1934 when a group of refinery employees combined their assets to set this credit union in motion. It started with 11 members and $70. Soon fellow refinery employees were joining the credit union for their saving and loan needs as an alternative to banks.

        By 1978 members had the option of opening an interest bearing, no-fee checking account, which is still offered today. The credit union grew by offering other local employers these unique benefits of credit union membership for their employees.

        Unfortunately, the credit union wasn't able to serve all of the surrounding community. Eager to grow the membership, Bay Area Credit Union became one of the first credit union in Ohio to receive a community charter which permitted us to serve the communities of Oregon and Jerusalem Township.

        As the budding new consumer base began to grow it became obvious that the credit union needed to expand and centralize its service area. Bay Area CU built and moved into a new facility located at 4202 Navarre Avenue in 1997, only to expand the building in 2001 to its current size.

        Over 20 years ago, the employees of Bay Area Credit Union formed an employee outreach committee called "Beyond Bay Area."

        The committee provides a forum for the compassion and creative energy of the Bay Area CU employees. Each quarter the employees select a cause or an organization important to them in which to support. This committee is backed by credit union management, however is completely run by the employees. Generally, this support involves only the employees but in some cases especially when there is a desire to raise more funds or awareness, the employees will reach out to credit union members and even the community.

        Beyond Bay Area has raised money and awareness for many groups throughout the years such as; Clay's Closet, Wreaths Across America, Dogworks, Operation USO- Care Package, Holy Rosary Parish, The Gathering Place, The Salvation Army, Food for Thought, American Heart Association, Kiwanis, Operation Backpack, Adopt-a-Family, Orchard Villa, and The Healing Wall Exhibit/The Moving Vietnam Wall and Project Bethlehem.

        Bay Area CU also supports many local organizations and events such as Oregon Days, Allen-Clay Joint Fire District, Maumee Bay State Park, Pearson Park, Oregon Senior Center, Rollin' Food and Farmers Market, Oregon Schools Foundation, East Toledo Family Center, Clay High School Limelighters, Cardinal Stritch Academy, Lake Local Schools, Genoa Area Schools, Eastwood Local Schools, Oregonian Club, First St. John, Jerusalem Parents group, and Heartland of Oregon.

Going door to door

        Clement was honored with the Newcomer of the Year award, given to a business that has come into the area within the past five years.

        “I would recommend Oregon because it's a diamond in the rough,” Clement said.

        As a financial advisor, he strives to provide longterm financial security for his clients but also has some advice for people like himself who start their own business.

        “My advice for them would be, number one, be patient and two, work like you never have before because it's a hard area to cultivate. If someone works hard enough and cares about what they do, they can always make it happen. A lot of businesses don't put in the proper work and usually that's why they fail.”

        Clement says it was not easy for him to get his business started.

        “I have faced many obstacles since my inception. I built this business from scratch meaning I started with nothing. Oregon has also been a very difficult area for EJ, hence why I am the only office. I had to go out, door knock, and get involved in the community,” Clement said.

        “I've always followed my heart and became heavily involved in areas where I'm most interested and passionate. This includes Rotary, the schools, the YMCA, and the Senior Center. I also started at age 23 so that includes its own challenge when you're asking people to trust you with money they've worked so hard to earn.”

        Clement says community has always been important, which is why he teaches financial literacy at Clay High School three times a year, volunteers at the Oregon Senior Center two times per week and is a volunteer coach for a high school basketball at the Eastern Community YMCA.

        He’s a member of the Oregon-Northwood Rotary club and says he “supports the local Kiwanis organization in many ways.”

        “I've started a program at the local library to teach kids about investments. I also support (Eastern Maumee Bay Chamber of Commerce executive director) Yvonne Patton in many of her endeavors, most notably the Christmas Basket Event,” Clement said.

        Other Prism business and organization nominees include Smokey’s BBQ Roadhouse, Commodore Perry Federal Credit Union, the Cardinal Stritch High School boys varsity basketball team, Care-A-Van Patient Advocacy Fund, Cardinal Stritch High School and Academy, Miracle League of Northwest Ohio, Oregonian Club, and Serenity Farm and Equestrian Center.

 

 

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