Catherine York Powers

Catherine is a former lending and M&A executive who set out to turn loan servicing into a profit center by empowering credit union members to service their own loans. In founding Constant, Catherine transformed loan servicing by introducing member self-service to requests that normally require phone calls or branch visits and inundates operations teams. This digital approach to loan servicing opened the door to net new, personalized product offerings. Catherine passionately supports the promotion of women, especially black, LatinX and indigenous women in financial services and fintechs and embraces two mottos: "do what’s right" and "don’t be lazy and solve a part of the problem."

In 2023, Catherine was a featured speaker on the power of member-driven loan servicing at Jack Henry Strategic Initiatives, an annual, closed, client-only annual conference. She also spoke at Jack Henry Connect on two panels, one related to new tech integrated with Jack Henry Banno alongside other emerging fintechs, and the other titled "Fintech: It's Not Just for Boys" on specific approaches to create more diverse voices in financial services. She also spoke at regional conferences and on webinars about how members servicing their own loans in online banking can drive material costs savings and new revenue generation for credit unions. 

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Loan servicing is highly manual and frustrates members who need to call or visit the branch for common requests. Ops teams aren't always trained and don't have time to cross sell, and frustrated members aren't open to new offers. When members can get their assistance request fully completed within online banking, credit unions can convert what is normally a transactional request into a new loan offer, a deposit offer or other cross-sell opportunity.

Credit union members are like every other human being: they'd prefer to avoid uncomfortable conversations with strangers about their financial struggles. We should make it easy for members to see support options available to them and then allow them to apply for, be decisioned, and receive that assistance online. Clear options and the right level of hardship relief can keep members out of collections. By providing this lifeline, credit unions have another way to create members for life.

According to McKinsey, a 10% increase in racial and ethnic diversity in senior leadership corresponded to a 0.8% rise in earnings before interest and taxes. When financial services leaders embrace the business case for diversity and treat it as a profit driver and competitive advantage – not a cost center – they will see real progress.