CEFCU: A HISTORY
OF BENEFITTING CHELSEA CITY EMPLOYEES
As the nation was coming out of the Great Depression in 1935, Chelsea Mayor Lawrence Quigley invited all city employees to the Williams School to discuss forming their own credit union to pool savings and make loans to each other. There was overwhelming support for the idea from the city workers. Eight days later, on December 13, 1935, the United States Farm Credit Administration approved the charter for the formation of the Chelsea Massachusetts Municipal Employees Federal Credit Union.
On January 2, 1936 the credit union opened its doors with a membership of 73 city employees and share deposits of nearly $400. The membership elected its first Board of Directors: President Robert E. Tobin, Treasurer James A. Gleason, Clerk Elinor J. Patterson, John F. Geyer, John J. Kirby, Chester P. Knowlton and John Marion.
For the first 15 years, the credit union operated part-time from a desk in the Assessors office at City Hall. Following the close of WWII, the credit union hired its first paid clerks to better serve the increasing needs of the city employees. In 1950, Chelsea Mayor Joseph Melley and Building Commissioner William Hendry agreed that the credit union should operate from its own separate office. This allowed the credit union to be open full-time for its members. That same year, the name of the credit union was changed to Chelsea Employees Federal Credit Union and the field of membership was expanded to include employees from the Chelsea Schools. In 2010, the Field of Membership was expanded to include employees of the Chelsea Housing Authority.
Members play an important role in the success of the credit union. For seven decades, numerous members have volunteered countless hours to the credit union by serving on the Board of Directors, Credit Committee or Supervisory Committee without compensation. All of our members have helped us to grow from the original 73 members with $400 to our current membership of over 1900 with over $10 million in assets.
Our commitment to provide our members access to the financial services that meet their changing needs continues today. In just the last four years, we have added Home Equity loans, 24-Hour Telephone Banking, ATM/ Debit cards and Home Financial Services through our web site. We remain true to our mission of providing the best possible services to the employees of the City of Chelsea and their families.