Langley Township mayor Jack Froese (L), Aldergrove Credit Union board chair Bev Dornan, branch manager Christina Hopkins and Aldergrove Credit Union CEO Gus Hartl officially opened the ACU’s newest branch in Willoughby on Sturday, March 27 (Dan Ferguson/Langley Advance Times)

Langley Township mayor Jack Froese (L), Aldergrove Credit Union board chair Bev Dornan, branch manager Christina Hopkins and Aldergrove Credit Union CEO Gus Hartl officially opened the ACU’s newest branch in Willoughby on Sturday, March 27 (Dan Ferguson/Langley Advance Times)

VIDEO: Not your traditional line-up: new Aldergrove Credit Union branch opens in Willoughby

Customers can take a seat to confer with a teller

Before the Aldergrove Credit Union (ACU) took over the premises at #300 – 7150 200th St. in Langley’s Willoughby neighbourhood, the space was home to another financial institution.

After extensive renovations for the newest ACU branch, about the only remnant of the previous tenant was the vault, branch manager Christina Hopkins told the Langley Advance Times on Saturday, March 27, during the official opening day.

READ ALSO: Aldergrove Credit Union puts finishing touches on new Willoughby location

Virtually everything else was redone, to reflect a different approach that, among other things, means members will be able to take a seat to talk to a teller instead of a stand-up counter.

“It’s not your traditional line-up,” Hopkins commented.

At the grand opening, Langley Township Mayor Jack Froese, Aldergrove Credit Union board chair Bev Dornan, and Aldergrove Credit Union CEO, Gus Hartl were there to witness Hopkins wield the scissors for the ribbon-cutting.

Hartl called it “an amazing new branch” that will serve the local community well.

“Quite honestly, we’ve been looking forward to anchoring our roots in the Willoughby community for the last five years,” Hartl commented.

“My daughter, son-in-law and two granddaughters live a block away from here backing on to RC Garnet elementary school and when I saw this space become available it really excited me about the opportunity for ACU.”

It is the seventh branch opened by the 17,000-member credit union, which has just celebrated it’s 67th anniversary, Hartl noted.

READ ALSO: Aldergrove Credit Union and G&F Financial Group announce plans to merge

Froese called the opening of a new financial institution during the pandemic “a huge achievement,” adding that he was a “proud” member of ACU himself.

Dornan recalled joining the credit union when she was a child, to deposit money she made from berry picking.

“We’ve been here since the beginning,” Dornan remarked, pointing out two new members in the audience who happened to be her grandchildren.

Among those attending the event was Jeff Shewfelt, the co-CEO of the G&F Financial Group, the Gulf and Fraser Fishermen’s Credit Union, which is in negotiations to merge with ACU.

Also from G&F was chief experience and innovation officer Nelson Sandhu.

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