About ESA CU

The concept of service has been the center pillar for the ESA Credit Union since it was initially chartered in June, 1940. According to the first members of the Credit Union, the treasurer would meet buses, trains, or planes to help statewide members conduct business with the fledging new employee organization.

Ralph Boal was the first Treasurer/Manager of the Credit Union and is credited with it's organization and establishment. Originally, the Credit Union served the Employment Security Agency and Department of Labor employees and family members. The Charter is for the UCES (Unemployment Compensation Employment Security) department but this has changed several times through the years to the present Idaho Department of Labor. And the Credit Union has expanded to include individuals (and family members) who are employed by all State agencies, who are government employees at the Ada County Courthouse, who are employees of the downtown Winco, and who are downtown Boise Association members. But the 'ESA' identity is in the initial charter and remains as the credit union name.

Mary Moore Graham provided this information and has been a stalwart dedicated member of the ESA Credit Union from it's conception. Mary was one of the ten original charter members in 1940 and served 21 years as the Manager/Treasurer. She continued to serve on boards and committees and a debt of gratitude is owed to this fine lady.

Through the years, the Credit Union has continued because of the support and dedication of many volunteers. Originally, and continuing through today, the volunteer work has to be completed during the noon hours and after work. The organization has grown to include competent staff to operate the business. This includes the current manager, three full-time employees and one part-time employee.

Mary Graham stated that the only year the ESA Credit Union lost money was the first year of incorporation. At that time, expenses included a $40.00 charter fee and vouchers and receipt books to maintain records. The total loss the first year was $56.32. In 2003, the Credit Union and it's assets are in the $7.5 million range.

The initial business of the ESA Credit Union was operated under federal guidelines (Regulation W). Any money loaned had to be for an 'absolute necessity'. Mary states that in the early audits a loan for a stove was questioned as an absolute necessity. The interest on loans started at 1% per month and during World War II years, the dividends were paid at 2%. After about ten years, a bookkeeper was hired for $5.00 per month. Soon the business became too large and demanding and staff was gradually hired to maintain the professional requirements of the job-but still retain the service priority.

The ESA Credit Union has been a great asset and a lot of fun. Because members contribute time and expertise to build the business, the fiscal institution continues to grow and support the dreams of all the members.

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