Andrews Federal Credit Union and The Legacy of The Tuskegee Airmen

Andrews Federal Credit Union and The Legacy of The Tuskegee Airmen

Brought to you by the Defense Credit Union Council

Story by Liesel Schmidt

“Guided by our vision, our mission is to deliver innovative products and world-class service to help our global membership realize their financial aspirations. We take pride in providing financial solutions to help you take the next step in your financial journey.” That is the mission statement of Andrews Federal Credit Union, one that is extremely important for the millions of men and women of the United States military and their families. As they work to protect our nation, our armed forces need the support of financial institutions built around their specific needs, with programs designed to help them reach their financial goals.

'They said blacks couldn't be pilots and wouldn't make good military men. We proved them wrong. We distinguished ourselves in every way possible. We made that Red Tail famous.' - Lt. Col. Hiram Mann

Since opening in 1948, Andrews FCU has been dedicated to being a presence that the military community can count on, both here and overseas, offering everything from personal banking to loans, financial seminars, and investment services. Over the past seventy-plus years, Andrews FCU has grown exponentially to number more than 133,500 members, with a membership area that includes Washington, D.C., Maryland, Virginia, New Jersey, Joint Base Andrews and Joint Base McGuire/Dix/Lakehurst as well as U.S. military bases in central Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands. Such an expansive reach is even more impressive when one considers that the credit union began with only eight people and a deposit of five dollars each.

Honoring its deep military ties, Andrews FCU is a frequent sponsor of events important to the military, including the 2019 Joint Base Andrews Air Show and Space Expo. Held on May 10-12, 2019, the show included a number of military service performances and demos such as the USAF Heritage Flight, the Army Golden Knights Parachute Jump Team and Air Combat Command A-10 in addition to performances from the highly celebrated Air Force Thunderbirds and the Navy Blue Angels.

“As a federal credit union that is extremely committed to serving the military community, it is an honor to support Tuskegee Airmen, Inc., and the legacy of the brave souls it represents.'

Supporting the military community also means showing support of the military’s heritage, which is why Andrews FCU takes great pride in its partnership with Tuskegee Airmen, Inc. “As a federal credit union that is extremely committed to serving the military community, it is an honor to support Tuskegee Airmen, Inc., and the legacy of the brave souls it represents,” says Rosalind Bishop, Regional Branch Manager DC, MD, VA. Those brave souls—the Tuskegee Airmen—were the African-American soldiers involved in an Army Air Corps program called the 'Tuskegee Experience' created to train African-Americans to fly and maintain combat aircraft during WWII. Known as the Red Tails because of the distinctive markings of their fighter aircraft, the Tuskegee Airmen included pilots, navigators, bombardiers, maintenance and support staff, instructors and all the personnel who kept the planes in the air. As an organization tasked with honoring the accomplishments of these brave individuals and keeping their history alive, TAI has an important mission.

Part of that mission is investing in the futures of minority and disadvantaged youth, and TAI is committed to offering opportunities to those who dream of careers in aviation. In addition to offering scholarships and grants, the organization offers youth programs that encourage those dreams. Over the course of more than a decade, Andrews FCU’s partnership with TAI has contributed significantly to helping fund programs and scholarships by sponsoring two of its most important events

Since 1990, the East Coast Chapter of TAI has hosted the Benjamin O. Davis Golf Classic at Joint Base Andrews to support youth programs that include Educational Assistance Grants and the Youth in Aviation Program (YIAP). Benjamin O. Davis was the commander of the 332 Fighter Group (The Tuskegee Airmen) and was the first African-American General in the US Air Force. Andrews FCU has been a proud sponsor of the event, knowing that giving their support is helping to change young lives

Another significant TAI event sponsored by Andrews FCU is the Tuskegee Airmen Youth Breakfast, held each year at the Clubs at Andrews. Open to JROTC and other local high school students, the breakfast is a great opportunity for outreach and encouragement in addition to raising funds for the ECCTAI and its programs. “We are honored to sponsor and participate in this prestigious event each year,” says Bishop. “We are always looking for ways to support our local community, particularly service members. This event affords us with an opportunity to do both

Such a strong partnership is one that certainly makes a difference, reminding us all of the remarkable individuals who bravely changed the world and giving future generations the tools to do the same.

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