Financial Services

New Chapter at Northside for Mahoning Valley Credit Union

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – Through the closing of two hospitals, through ownership changes and through thousands of patients that have walked through the doors over the decades, the credit union at Northside Hospital has remained steadfast for the staff there.

And Wednesday, less than a year after Northside closed, the newly rebranded Mahoning Valley Federal Credit Union, 500 Gypsy Lane celebrated the beginning of a new chapter.

Terri Posey joined what was then Youngstown Hospital Association South Unit Federal Credit Union a year after she started at Northside. As a single mother, she said Wednesday, the credit union was invaluable.

“When the hospital went on strike, [I] was offered a no hassle loan and it helped with my rent and got groceries for my children,” she said. “From then on, I was hooked to this hospital.” 

Founded in 1961, Mahoning Valley Federal Credit Union once served employees at both Youngstown Hospital Association sites: Southside Hospital – now the Oak Hill Renaissance Center – and Northside.

When the Northside Hospital closed last summer, the credit union remained open and relocated into the building for the convenience of their members. 

“Even though it closed, there’s still a lot of things going on here. Radiology, the sleep lab and the dental clinic that just opened up a week ago,” said manager Melanie Fannin. “We want to help the community.” 

Membership is open to Steward Health Care employees, their families and those who live and work in the tri-county areas. 

Vice president Linda Salter said the credit union has about 500 members, many who worked at Southside, which closed in the early 2000s. 

“Now it’s migrated to Steward,” she said. “We still have members from Southside [and] Northside because these are members that have been here forever. We’re a nonprofit organization and we’re all about helping people.” 

Salter said when Northside Hospital closed, it had some impact, but Steward, the Boston-based health-care group, has helped them out. 

“They gave us a space inside of the hospital,” she said. “It’s nice, it’s clean [and] safe.”

With the rebranding and new office, Fannin said, the credit union is aiming for 2% growth. With Steward allowing staff to join and to use the space, it has saved the credit union a lot of money by not having to construct elsewhere. 

“We have about six volunteers except for our manager and our assistant teller [Beth Dunn],” Salter said.

Fannin said the new space is much better than their old office and more convenient for those who are still members to have easy access to the credit union. It is also features security upgrades, she added.

The credit union’s continuation in the community is one of the key factors. Staff members want to make community members aware of the hospital they relocated in and serve as a financial stepping stone for them. 

“The Youngstown area has been hit hard at many different times, but we are still open,” the credit union manager said. 

Debbie Patterson, a volunteer for 17 years, said she loves the people she gets to interact with and mentor about financing and taking out loans. She is thankful to be able to come back into the hospital at the new location. 

“[I’ve] gotten to know a lot of people [and] what they need, what they want,” she said. “We have a lot of stuff that we do offer to our members. We got the no hassle loan, no credit check, emergency loan. We’re small, but we’re still doing good.” 

Pictured: Steward Health Care administrator Jane Tablack joined Mahoning Valley Federal Credit Union’s Joyce Noble, Melanie Fannin, Beth Dunn, Debbie Patterson, Linda Salter and Terri Posey.

Published by The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.