Meet the Two New Change Agents to Join CO-OP’s Executive Team

CO-OP Financial Services

New Leaders


Last week we were thrilled to welcome Bruce Dragt and Cheryl Middleton Jones to CO-OP as our new Chief Product Officer and Chief People Officer, respectively.

Both experienced change agents within their fields, Bruce and Cheryl join CO-OP’s Executive Management Team to help lead our transformation as a digital enterprise.

“Bruce and Cheryl will be tremendous assets for CO-OP based on their extensive background in product and talent development, and both have had careers that exemplify our corporate values of working as partners, communicating openly and honestly, demonstrating excellence and championing change,” said Todd Clark, President/CEO.

We sat down with Bruce and Cheryl to learn a little more about their backgrounds and the transformation they hope to bring to CO-OP:

Bruce Dragt, Chief Product Officer:

Can you tell us a little bit about your background and experience?

I’ve been fortunate to have had the opportunity to work all across the country at a variety of companies, from large enterprises to young startups. For the past two-plus years I was Executive Vice President of Product for Yapstone, which provides electronic payment systems to online and mobile companies. Prior to that I worked at First Data, i2 Technologies and Wells Fargo. So I’ve been in the payments and financial industry for a while and I’m really looking forward to bringing that experience to CO-OP and the credit union industry.

What excites you about joining CO-OP?

I’m very excited to join CO-OP as Chief Product Officer and to have the opportunity to bring to life all of the great products CO-OP has been developing over the years. I think CO-OP has demonstrated a commitment towards going beyond just being a technology provider to an organization that is really focused on bringing innovation to credit unions and their members.

What are the payments/technology product trends you are most excited about and that credit unions should be focusing on?

I’m excited about all of the opportunity that technology advancements are providing for payments. In particular: AI, open APIs and mobile have given credit unions the opportunity to enhance and improve the payments experience in ways that weren’t previously possible. In addition, new data management techniques will also help connect experience and activity across multiple channels and touchpoints instantaneously, enabling both digital and human interaction to flow seamlessly.

So, I encourage credit unions to focus on these kinds of technology trends and how they are being applied to payments.


Cheryl Middleton Jones, Chief People Officer:

Can you tell us a little about your background and experience?

I’ve worked in Human Resources for over 20 years at a variety of different companies. Most recently I worked at the mass media company Discovery where I oversaw the company’s HR transformation following an acquisition of Scripps Networks. Prior to that I worked for ING and Honeywell.

I’ve also worked in various areas of HR, from recruiter to business partner, as well as some more client-facing roles. All that together has given me a lot of diverse experience that I’m looking forward to bringing to CO-OP.

What excites you about joining CO-OP?

What excites me most about joining CO-OP is the people. I have been really impressed with everyone that I’ve met so far and everything is better when you work with people you enjoy.

At the same time, I think CO-OP is really in an interesting phase of transformation right now. I got a great sense from Todd about where he wants to grow and take the business and I think it’s refreshing to see a company that has this sort of transformative vision. It’s not easy to find an organization that is this committed to growth.

So it’s the combination of working with great people and the opportunity to really make an impact in a growing organization that excites me the most.

Can you explain your new role and how it will impact CO-OP’s employees and the credit union industry?

HR is all about strengthening the organization and giving employees the processes, technology systems and structure to do their best. We are focused on everything that goes into making employees better, whether that means being more efficient through learning and development or helping them navigate challenges when life happens.

My goal is to make sure our foundation is solid and to expand on the services, development and culture we offer our employees.

How does that impact our credit union clients? When your employees are thriving and growing, they perform better at their jobs and offer a higher level of service and so our clients will greatly benefit from that.

Meet Bruce, Cheryl and the rest of the CO-OP Executive Management Team at THINK 19 – May 6-9 in Miami, Florida. Leverage the experience and insight of industry-thought leadership through four days of breakout sessions and 1:1 Advisor sessions while enjoying the best networking in the business.


The original article Meet the Two New Change Agents to Join CO-OP’s Executive Team can be found on Insight Vault.


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