Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Ukrainiens à Montréal

Taras Pidzamecky - President of Ukrainian National Federation ,
Justin Trudeau MP for the riding of Papineau,
Yaroslava Iwasykiw Newly Elected President of Ukrainian Womens Organization (OYK),
Roman Sochaniwsky (me), Newly Elected President of Ukrainian War Veterans Association of Canada
and Bohdan Koval, Newly Elected President of Ukrainian National Youth Federation.

This weekend Ukrainian National Federation held their 36th National Convention in Montreal. With each branch represented the delegates and guests were given the opportunity to appreciate, maintain and build a national bond, as well as, discuss future plans. Ukrainian National Federation has a long history of being known as a family organization. This convention proved itself to be an event where members of all ages were encouraged to take part in different activities the conference offered. Guest Speaker Justin Trudeau, spoke about the importance of community involvement and directed part of his speech to the tables of youth, encouraging them to always remember that they too have a voice.

Going through the program booklet it was amazing to see all of the credit unions that sponsored the convention to support their local branches.

Ukrainian Credit Union Limited as Platinum Sponsor
Caisse Populaire Desjardins Ukrainienne de Montreal
New Community Credit Union
United Ukrainian Credit Union

Things you didn't know about UCU Board Members...

Spot light on:

Evhen Roman 

Eugene Roman
Eugene Roman has been on the UCU Board of Directors since 1995 and has been leading the Board as its Chair since 1998. Most people will know him as the Chief Technology Officer (CTO) of Open Text Corporation, a world leading Canadian-based digital content technology provider. You may also know that he owns and operates the Rosewood Estates Winery.

But did you know that he is also a 2nd generation beekeeper? The Roman family have been beekeepers for 70 years, since Eugene’s father set up an apiary in King Township in Ontario. Eugene got his first hive at the age of 6!

Beekeeping is not only a personal passion for Eugene, it is also an integral part of the business at Rosewood Estates. The Winery has seven apiaries in the Beamsville Bench area. The honey wine (mead) it produces is “a true artistic challenge” in the words of Eugene, blending structure and balance. Rosewood Estates also sells its own honey and beeswax candles.

The Roman family applies the same passion to its wine making as it does to the beekeeping. Despite being a very new winery, opening only in 2008, it has already won over 45 medals for its fine red, white and honey wines.

In the attached video, Eugene talks about bee keeping in Ukraine and Ontario.

Among other pursuits, Eugene is also on the advisory council for the Conrad Centre for Business, Entrepreneurship and Technology (CBET), at the University of Waterloo

Please note that while Eugene Roman is still on the board of directors of Ukrainian Credit Union Limited, he has since the writing of this post passed on the mantle of Chair of the Board to Andre Sochaniwsky.

One Idea – One Sentence: Lessgage is recognized

A well-loved UCU TV commercial played a starring role in a seminar at the Ukrainian National Federation Conference in Montreal this past weekend. Steve Andrusiak, who teaches Media Ethics and Television Journalism at the University of Western Ontario, spoke about the value and effectiveness of keeping media and advertising messages simple and clear.
In his presentation entitled “УНО-кальні Оптимісти. UNF-ettered Optimists. Be Positive, Communicate, Grow.” Mr. Andrusiak used the original Lessgage commercial starring Vera Ke and Greg Evans, as an example of a well-focused media message. You can find the ad in question at this link: UCU Lessgage Ad.
Steve Andrusiak
“The commercial also reinforced some over-arching themes without departing from its one well-focused message – ‘be wise, don't be drawn in by big banks’,” says Mr. Andrusiak. “Credit unions are grounded, and can teach big, confident looking bankers a quiet thing or two.  The compact, sparse and imaginative ad did not compress all of the benefits of becoming a member of the Ukrainian Credit Union. It focused on one client benefit – the "less-gage" of the more favourable mortgage a member will obtain.”
The central point of Mr. Andrusiak's seminar was to demonstrate to UNF members, and others attending the seminar, how they can improve the effectiveness of their PR and media-relations strategies by keeping their message short, simple and to the point.
“It's a lesson worth remembering when communicating with the media or when telling our own stories,” he continues. “A reporter – particularly in television works much like a carver or sculptor.  One begins with a block of wood or stone and discards what she/he doesn't need. What is left is the story.”
Steve Andrusiak is a journalist as well as the CEO of Story Village, an independent news service in East London, Ontario. Before teaching Media Ethics and Television Journalism at the University of Western Ontario, Mr. Andrusiak worked in various roles in TV and news radio and public affairs, for CTV and CBC. He also served as the Dean of the Communication Arts Division at Fanshawe College in London, Ontario for 4 years and initiated the college's first Theatre Performance program.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Things you didn't know about UCU employees...

Spot light on:

Roman Litwinchuk
This is how Roman's colleagues at work
usually see him
Roman Litwinchuk, our COO, is an accomplished jazz percussionist, currently performing with the Six Points Jazz Orchestra (SPJO). You can see these cats break it down tomorrow afternoon at the Gate 403 on Roncesvalles starting at 12pm. You can find a map showing Gate 403's location here.

Some of you may also know Roman from one of his earlier musical projects playing with Bukovina Brass. Does that name bring back sweet memories of zabavas past?

And this is Roman in his musical element

SPJO is a five-piece combo that plays highly accessible jazz standards that Roman helped found in 2008. ‘Six Points’ actually refers to the intersection of three main roads in west end Toronto, near where the members grew up, and is reflected in the group’s logo, with a small star representing a favourite late night hangout in the area.

Inspired by the mid-century jazz greats, the SPJO plays tunes originally made famous by such artists as Miles Davis, Antonio Carlos Jobim, Dizzy Gillespie and Chet Baker. Today, the SPJO consists of five permanent members including: Chris – guitar, Paul – trombone & trumpet, Darrin – bass, Dave – guitar, Roman – drums.

A close-up of Roman's brushes.
Roman is also the Secretary of the Board of Compass Charitable Foundation (non-profit housing), a member of the Credit Union Manager`s Association and is a member of St. Elias Ukrainian Catholic Church in Brampton.

So come on down Saturday October 22, 2010 and watch Roman beat his skins.

To read about other employees featured in the Spot Light section please visit this link: Spot Light On....

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Windsor welcomes the start of Fall Bazaar!

“Under the B 6! - BINGO!”

Lesia Nazarewich, UNF Executive Member and Dr. Walter Yaworsky, President of Ukrainian National Federation Windsor Branch, selling bingo tickets and reminding everyone about UCU’s great GIC specials!

This past Sunday, Ukrainian Credit Union Limited sponsored Ukrainian National Federation- Windsor Branch’s Annual Fall Bazaar and Bingo. The hall was packed with the community out to enjoy great food and ready to win some prizes!  I was put to work calling out winning tickets and snapped a few photos while we waited for the next bingo to be called.

Barvinok Dancers rolling up their sleeves to volunteer!

Friday, October 8, 2010

St. Catharines Chamber of Commerce trade show

Ukrainian Credit Union Limited is an active participant in the St. Catharines Chamber of Commerce. On Oct 5 we participated in the Chamber’s bi-annual trade show to spread the word on the benefits of credit unions to local businesses. Diane Kusiak (at right in the picture) is both the Membership Manager of the St. Catharines Chamber of Commerce, as well as a member of UCU’s St. Catharines Advisory Council.

Laura Petrunick (on the right) is the WINNER of UCU draw prize at the St. Catharines Chamber of Commerce trade show.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

UCU helps to make Cancer History!

At the finish line
In 2006 a brave young man, Peter Gatti, just weeks after his 12th birthday, was diagnosed with Leukemia. After undergoing treatment and over 3 years of “maintenance” treatment, he has achieved a fresh start!

Just after Peter was diagnosed his father, Angelo Gatti, took up the fight against cancer by riding in the Tour for Kids, put on by Coast to Coast Against Cancer Foundation. A year later, Peter joined his father in this worthy cause to fight back against cancer and their family has been actively fundraising for the cause ever since.

In 2009 he was given the opportunity by GIVETOLIVE to participate in the LIVESTRONG Challenge in Texas and have a ride with Lance Armstrong.

This year Peter and his father, along with 38 other cyclists, have committed to a two week bike ride starting in Vancouver ending in Austin Texas, with the GIVETOLIVE. Once in Texas, they will cycle alongside of Lance Armstrong (and a thousand others) in the LIVESTRONG Challenge for a day!
Lance Armstrong autographs Peter's shirt

We all at UCU and the community are cheering for Peter and Angelo as they embark on this journey Monday, October 11!

Click below to learn more about Peter and his ride:

Peter's Page on the Canadian Cancer Society web site

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Ukrainian Credit Union sponsors "On the Move"

Ukrainian Credit Union Limited is proud to be a key sponsor of "On the Move" the newest project by Natalia Koulinich-Kolacz, the accomplished composer, arranger and pianist. You can catch her at the album release party on October 17 at the Golden Lion restaurant in Etobicoke.
Natalia (on the left) at the pre-party for UCU-sponsored Mad Heads XL

You can get more information about the concert and Natalia's work at: Natalia's web site.

Friday, October 1, 2010

UCU Advisory Council in St. Catharines

This week, the Advisory Council at Ukrainian Credit Union Limited's St. Catharines held its bi-monthly meeting. The community takes a deep interest in the well being of its credit union and the council meetings serve as a great way to bring important local issues to the attention of the larger organization. In the picture are Nazar Bablak who came out to learn more about the advisory council, Advisory council members Anna Zeppia, Bob Diakow, Ola Tkaczyk, Kathryn Hryb, and branch manager Yuriy Nesvit.

Ukrainian Credit Union Limited Members approve merger with So-Use Credit Union

On Wednesday September 30th, the membership of Ukrainian Credit Union Limited voted by an overwhelming majority to go ahead with a proposed merger with So-Use Credit Union. On the previous day, the membership of So-Use Credit Union, by a 97% vote for, also authorized the merger to proceed.

Our two credit unions and their combined memberships now move forward stronger than ever before. Together, we will be able to work even better to serve and support our members, Ukrainian organizations and the greater communities within which we operate.

UCU Chair of the Board Eugene Roman
addresses the gathering of UCU members
before the vote on the merger.

The UCU Board of Directors after the vote

UCU members waiting for the results of the
UCU 65th Anniversary Shareholders' vote