Many remnants of the Charleston Naval Shipyard still exist throughout the Lowcountry today, but none as prominent as South Carolina Federal Credit Union. In 1936, SC Federal began in the heart of the Charleston Naval Shipyard as The Charleston Navy Yard Employees Federal Credit Union. 14 Charleston Naval Shipyard workers got together and each contributed $5 to charter the new membership owned credit union. Though obviously a lot has changed since the credit union’s early 1936 days, SC Federal has continued to place a value on the importance of community and remaining a local Lowcountry fixture.
SC Federal expresses this love for community best through the many programs and sponsorships they offer. Every year SC Federal hosts a range of Member Appreciation Events throughout the state of South Carolina and ensures the simplest and best value banking with their ‘Doing More Together’ program, DoMoTo. And this past month, SC Federal was ranked sixth on the 2019 list of Best Places to Work in South Carolina, a list that they’ve been featured on for five straight years.
For this week’s LLF Member Spotlight, we visited South Carolina Federal Credit Union’s Headquarters in North Charleston to learn more about their offerings and how they interact with the local community.
What kinds of unique services does South Carolina Federal Credit Union offer?
In addition to the standard financial services we provide, including checking and savings accounts (insured by the NCUA), credit cards and auto loans, we are also able to offer a number of other services to our members.
Through SCF Solutions*, we are able to provide auto insurance, home insurance, and life insurance to our members, as well as business insurance and employee benefit consultative services for our business members.
*Benefits and insurance services are provided by South Carolina Financial Solutions, LLC, a wholly-owned subsidiary of South Carolina Federal Credit Union.
What differentiates South Carolina Federal Credit Union from a nationally owned bank?
One of the most important differences between a bank and a credit union is that banks are owned by investors and must report profits to shareholders. As a credit union, we are not-for-profit and are owned by our membership. We are a smaller entity than most nationally-owned banks, so we are able to build personal relationships with our members, which helps us do more to support their financial wellbeing.
What does being local mean to you?
To us, being local means putting people over profits and investing back into the community. We employee nearly 400 people in the Charleston region and have 155,000 members across the state of South Carolina. We invest more than $500,000 into our communities annually, and our employees put in thousands of volunteer hours with local charities every year.
What are some of your favorite local businesses and organizations to support in the Lowcountry?
We have a great relationship with the South Carolina Aquarium and are proud to support the Sea Turtle Care Center. We are honored to work with a number of non profits who do so much for our community, including the Charleston Animal Society, Lowcountry Orphan Relief, Lowcountry Food Bank and Trident United Way.