The Invite-Only Event For Senior-Level Banking & Credit 
Union Branch Executives

June 15 - 16, 2021 | 12:30pm ET

Future Branches Connect Virtual Event

Future Branches Connect is a private, invite-only virtual event bringing together senior-level retail and branch operations leaders from banks and credit unions for a collaborative discussion on branch transformation 2.0.

The mission of Future Branches Connect is to provide an interactive, high-level platform for the exchange of ideas, best practices and timely perspectives on moving beyond these turbulent times.

Attendees receive access to all educational content (fireside chats, panels, keynotes, think tanks, and roundtables) delivered by other senior executives and get the opportunity to have pre-scheduled 1-to-1 meetings with solution providers who can help you accelerate your branch transformation.

A Unique Experience

The Future Branches Connect Virtual Event is an online forum mirroring our in-person events. We’re bringing you exclusive knowledge from top-notch industry leaders at the touch of a button.

Here's what you get when you attend:

Pre-Scheduled 1:1 Meetings

See someone on our attendee list you want to meet? Mutually matched and pre-scheduled 1:1 meetings with your prospects and peers make it easy to further business. No more fruitless conversation. No more tradeshows.

Executive-Level Content

We provide custom-made, high-level content that fosters a fruitful dialogue amongst participants. Engage in in-depth discussions on how senior executives are leading the charge, to provide you with a rare chance to benchmark against the biggest brands in the country.

Exclusive Networking

Meet only the most senior-level executives in an intimate and interactive environment at our breakout rooms, 1:1 meetings, roundtables, and more.

Our Speakers. Your Visionaries.

Laurie Stewart

Laurie Stewart

CEO | President

Sound Community Bank

Dan Brace

Dan Brace

Vice President Branch Operations Projects & Training

Navy Federal Credit Union

Robert Sims

Robert Sims

SVP Core Retail Bank

Hancock Whitney

Dana Giove

Dana Giove

Senior Vice President, Retail Development Director

Banner Bank

Maureen Flaherty

Maureen Flaherty


Kennebunk Savings Bank

Karen Ortiz

Karen Ortiz


First Financial Credit Union

Chip Griffith

Chip Griffith

Regional President

OneAZ Credit Union

Chris Groshko

Chris Groshko

SVP, Chief Retail Officer

Advantis Credit Union

Lisa Colangelo

Lisa Colangelo


Coast Capital Savings

Misti Mostiller

Misti Mostiller

EVP, Director, Consumer Strategy & Innovation

Extraco Banks

Michelle White

Michelle White

VP of Workforce Planning

JP Morgan Chase

Aaron Young

Aaron Young

SVP, Branch Operations/Retail Banking

Credit Union of Southern California

Cindy Huntley

Cindy Huntley

Executive Vice President Chief Banking Officer

Heritage Bank

Kim Oblak

Kim Oblak

VP, Chief Retail Officer

LA Financial Credit Union

Eric Oterson

Eric Oterson

Senior Vice President, Service and Sales Management

Jovia Financial Credit Union

Shawn Premer SPHR, SHRM-SCP

Shawn Premer SPHR, SHRM-SCP

Chief Human Resources Officer,

Consumers Credit Union

Carlos Noriega

Carlos Noriega

AVP Branch Administration

United Nations Federal Credit Union

Jamie Denunzio PHR/SHRM-CP

Jamie Denunzio PHR/SHRM-CP

Chief Operating Officer

Riverfront Federal Credit Union

Val Mindak

Val Mindak


Park City Credit Union

Sean Keathley

Sean Keathley

President & CEO


Gina Bleedorn

Gina Bleedorn

Chief Experience Officer


Joe Salesky

Joe Salesky



Ben La Macchia

Ben La Macchia


La Macchia Group

Mike Sha

Mike Sha



Brian Wallace

Brian Wallace

General Manager of Banking


Robert Woolsey

Robert Woolsey

Solution Consultant


Word On The Street

Invaluable Connections

"The sessions provide content that is relevant, the vendors bring solutions that address the needs and the connections made are invaluable."

Brian Eitniear
First Federal Bank

Amazing Experience

"Amazing experience at Future Branches! It was so refreshing to sit down with a group of my peers to talk about the issues that we’re all facing. I had a number of good conversations and interesting takeaways."

Daniel Hassman
Chief Operating Officer
Northwest Bank

Great Takeaways

"Future Branches is a great forum where I can find answers for my branch. It was really interesting to meet and hear from peers that share the same challenges that I do. I learned so much!"

Derrick Chambless
Vice President
Centric Federal Credit Union

Future Branches Connect Virtual Event Agenda

 All Session times displayed in Eastern Time

Day One - June 15, 2021

  • 11:50 am - 12:20 pm

    11:50 am - 12:20 pm

    End your day by joining your fellow financial services executive peers in an informal speed networking activity. Like speed dating, you’ll have 5 minutes to meet with 1 or 2 executives before rotating to the next session, allowing you to meet many peers in the process. Starter questions will be provided to help break the ice, so what are you waiting for? Don’t miss this chance to expand your network! This session is limited to attendees at financial institutions only.

    Learn more
  • 12:30 pm - 12:40 pm

    12:30 pm - 12:40 pm

  • 12:40 pm - 1:10 pm

    12:40 pm - 1:10 pm

    Maureen Flaherty, CMO, Kennebunk Savings Bank
    Jamie Denunzio PHR/SHRM-CP, Chief Operating Officer, Riverfront Federal Credit Union
    Aaron Young, SVP, Branch Operations/Retail Banking, Credit Union of Southern California
    Mike Sha, CEO, SigFig

    Technology is impacting consumer preferences and companies have to move faster than ever to adopt new technology with a customer-centric mindset. Especially given the rush towards digital capabilities during the beginning of the pandemic. But, customers also want personalization—In an increasingly online world with self-service on the rise, customers are still looking for a 1 to 1 relationship and a personal touch. Especially with the institution that safeguards their money. Takeaways from this session will include:

    • What customer facing or customer centered technology have you invested in within the past couple of years? What customer problem led you to investing in this technology?
    • How can you be more human in your interactions (even if they are digital) and deliver more personalized and authentic communications?
    • What kind of messaging/channels can you use? What kind of language should be used?
    • What does it mean to move away from transactions and towards meaningful engagement?
    • What do customers want brands to know about them—and what do they want from you in return?
    • How do you make sure any human manned customer service channels are staffed with employees who are fully trained on providing the best possible experiences?
    • How can you make sure that your customers are satisfied with the mix of high tech & high touch you’ve set up?

    Learn more
  • 1:10 pm - 1:40 pm

    1:10 pm - 1:40 pm

    Gina Bleedorn, Chief Experience Officer, Adrenaline
    Sean Keathley, President & CEO, Adrenaline

    With post-COVID shifts in consumer behavior and rapidly mounting competition, it’s never been more critical to leverage data intelligence to make smarter location-based branch investment decisions. Mobile movement and market data insights translated into actionable branch network strategies are the key to transforming your physical delivery into an efficient growth machine. And with 92% of people wanting to open an account in person (Novantas, December 2020) and a record percentage of consumers and businesses considering switching primary financial institutions (KPMG, 2020), opportunity to leverage your physical channel for growth is at an all-time high. You must balance efficiency with optimal perceived market presence, combining micro and self-serve formats with full-service hubs without skimping on customer-centric expectations and experiences. In this session, we will share strategic approaches to data-informed decision-making, with real-world branch format examples across a spectrum of institution sizes and markets. Learn how to make the right physical channel moves now that will define your future.

    Specific discussion points will include:

    • Understanding how mobile movement data and market insights can inform location selection and format type

    • How to orchestrate hub-and-spoke delivery to achieve maximum market presence with minimum spend

    • Determining where and how to design and deploy self-service technology, micro and mobile formats

    • Aligning branch investment with market opportunity for maximum ROI 

    • Building a network strategy to chart a course for future growth 

    Learn more
  • 1:40 pm - 2:05 pm

    1:40 pm - 2:05 pm

    Robert Sims, SVP Core Retail Bank, Hancock Whitney

    • Understanding how innovation will set your organization apart from the competition.
    • Understanding the types of innovation and digital tools you should invest in to keep up with competition
    • Fostering internal behaviors that promote creativity and innovation
    • Working alongside risk and compliance departments to keep customer information safe while pushing innovation forward
    • Giving your team the room to be flexible and autonomous
    • Creating internal conditions that are conducive to innovation

    Robert Sims, SVP Core Retail Bank, Hancock Whitney

    Learn more
  • 2:05 pm - 2:25 pm

    2:05 pm - 2:25 pm

    Joe Salesky, CEO, CRMNEXT

  • 2:25 pm - 2:55 pm

    2:25 pm - 2:55 pm

    Eric Oterson, Senior Vice President, Service and Sales Management, Jovia Financial Credit Union
    Chip Griffith, Regional President, OneAZ Credit Union
    Carlos Noriega, AVP Branch Administration, United Nations Federal Credit Union

    Given the impact of coronavirus, many of you have had to complete digital transformation projects in 2 months as opposed to the two years you had them planned out for. You’ve had to AGGRESSIVELY educate customers on how to use ITM’s and drive thru’s for basic transactions and have had to ramp up video conferencing capabilities and completely rethink AGAIN what your branches are for. As we work through re-opening branch lobbies in some states, it’s clear there is no going back. There is only going FORWARD.

    • How are you going to take what you’ve learned through this process and apply it to your plans for your branches in the future?
    • What digital products did you invest in during COVID that you think will continue to improve CX event after COVID is over?
    • How do you approach the new normal? What nonessential processes can you leave behind?
    Learn more
  • 2:55 pm - 3:15 pm

    2:55 pm - 3:15 pm

    Ben La Macchia, SVP, La Macchia Group
    Val Mindak, CEO/President, Park City Credit Union

    With consumer research indicating account churn could exceed 20% in 2021 (Foresight Research, 2020), how can you make sure that consumers on the move see your FI and consider you as a viable option? Not many FIs can afford large-scale advertising campaigns, but the good news is, you may not need it to build awareness and attract interest. Join Ben La Macchia of La Macchia Group and special guest Val Mindak, CEO/President of Park City Credit Union as they discuss how to turn your branch locations into your most powerful billboards. Often overlooked for this purpose, Ben and Val will discuss the importance of understanding your market potential and the options available to make your branch a key communication tool. The duo will share examples of both modest and dramatic branch designs and update options to inspire viewers, including what Park City did in 2018 to drive member and account growth higher than ever.  

    Learn more
  • 3:15 pm - 3:40 pm

    3:15 pm - 3:40 pm

    Dana Giove, Senior Vice President, Retail Development Director, Banner Bank
    Kim Oblak, VP, Chief Retail Officer, LA Financial Credit Union
    Cindy Huntley, Executive Vice President Chief Banking Officer, Heritage Bank

    According to research by Adobe Analytics, 50%+ of consumers, including Millennials and Gen Z, still visit branches at least monthly. 72% of Gen Z consumers visit a branch at least once a month. That’s more than any other age group, according to this 2019 study of 1,000 consumers. And 60% of Millennials say the same. If this continues to be the case, can you close branches? If you have a branch network serving a market, the answer is likely yes, but you have to do so carefully. Our panelists will walk us through what the branch closure or moving process looks like and how they do this with the least amount of upset. They will discuss:

    • • What are some of the reasons you chose to close or move a branch? What data goes into that decision?
    • • If you’ve chosen to move a branch, what goes into where that new branch should go? What kind of demographics do you look at? Where do you get this data?
    • • Do you leave an ATM or some form of self-assisted technology behind/near by the closed branch?
    • • How do you approach your employees at that particular branch?
    • o Are they offered nearby opportunities? 
    • • How did you approach your current customers in that area? 
    • o What kinds of communications do they get from you in the lead up to the closure?
    • o What other banking options do you offer them?
    • Do you make efforts to train them on how to bank digitally? 
    • Do you introduce them to bankers at nearby branches? 
    • How do you approach potentially bad press about closures if it can’t be avoided?
    Learn more
  • 3:40 pm - 4:00 pm

    3:40 pm - 4:00 pm

    Misti Mostiller, EVP, Director, Consumer Strategy & Innovation, Extraco Banks

    Previous spending on costly renovations & new technology have made your branches more of a cost center for the business in the past couple of years, but there is massive opportunity to streamline and optimize things across your network to ensure great profits. Which will be incredibly necessary to avoid acquisition as the pandemic continues to affect us. That can be done by cutting down on operating costs and creating efficiencies across your branches. Join this fireside to hear more about how one institution has been approaching optimization. Expect to hear answers to questions like:

    • What technology can you implement to cut down on customer wait time?
    • How can you streamline processes like loan applications or customer onboarding?
    • What are some of the ways you can make your employees jobs easier?
    Learn more
  • 4:00 pm - 4:05 pm

    4:00 pm - 4:05 pm

  • 4:05 pm - 4:50 pm

    4:05 pm - 4:50 pm

    Brian Wallace, General Manager of Banking, Reflexis
    Michelle White, VP of Workforce Planning, JP Morgan Chase
    Robert Woolsey, Solution Consultant, Reflexis

    1. Roundtable: Empowering Workforce Management Transformation at Your Bank Branches, Hosted by Reflexis (Zebra)
    Learn more
  • 4:50 pm - 4:50 pm

    4:50 pm - 4:50 pm

Day Two - June 16, 2021

  • 11:30 am - 12:30 pm

    11:30 am - 12:30 pm

    Specially designed for executives who have seen it all and are looking to shake things up, these sessions will be led by those in the industry who are thinking outside the box in order to figure out the future of branch innovation within the banking industry.

    Learn more
  • 12:30 pm - 12:40 pm

    12:30 pm - 12:40 pm

  • 12:40 pm - 1:05 pm

    12:40 pm - 1:05 pm

    Dan Brace, Vice President Branch Operations Projects & Training, Navy Federal Credit Union

    Rampant shuttering of branches has slowed down in the past two or three years and now, banks are even starting to open some branches. Even despite the pandemic, banks, while closing branches, continue to open new ones. Why? Because branches still remain the best way for a bank to enter a new market and they are the biggest sources of revenue for a bank. But, during this time of continued virtual connection, how do you start bringing new money in from existing and new clients?

    Are you growing? What is the overall vision for your growth?

    • How are you leveraging the branch in your overall growth strategy?
    • How can you compete against FinTechs and large tech behemoths who are all encroaching on your potential business?
    • How are you calculating branch ROI? Does growth potential have something to do with it
    Learn more
  • 1:05 pm - 1:35 pm

    1:05 pm - 1:35 pm

    Lisa Colangelo, SVP, Coast Capital Savings
    Karen Ortiz, COO, First Financial Credit Union

    Today’s consumer is…. STRESSED. Constantly. And you know what stresses them out more than thinking about their job, their relationships or their living situation? MONEY. Considering your institution was designed to help consumers deal with their money and make smarter financial decisions, don’t you think you’d be wise to step in and help educate and inform? While many banks and credit unions have established financial literacy and education programs, is there anything more your institution can be doing?

    • What are some of the reasons you’ve started focusing on financial literacy for your customer/member and/or employees?
    • What are some of the initiatives you’ve undergone to help promote financial literacy?
    • How did you decide on these particular initiatives/programs?
    • How do share these initiatives with your customers? How involved have your employees been in these programs?
    • What have been some of the results?
    • Do you think a focus on financial literacy can help you attract new business and grow going forward?
    • How do you balance a genuine message promoting financial education while also potentially marketing products for your customers to use?
    • Do you see financial literacy and education as a key piece of the puzzle for the future of branch relevance?

    Learn more
  • 1:35 pm - 2:15 pm

    1:35 pm - 2:15 pm

    Chris Groshko, SVP, Chief Retail Officer, Advantis Credit Union
    Laurie Stewart, CEO | President, Sound Community Bank

    Pre-pandemic, there was a shift in focus towards creating branches that were focused on relationship building & not on transactions. The pandemic has only ramped up the need to shift ALL transactions to drive thrus, ATMs/ITMs or digital channels. Banks like PNC, Regions & Bank of America are closing their current bloated branches and developing more functional digital first & agile locations where customers can make appointments to come and test out new digital products and have meaningful conversations with digital & sales minded bank employees. Let’s talk about what the REAL branch of the future will look like and if you see if permanently replacing the branches you currently have. Panelists will discuss:

    • What is your vision for the branch of the future? What does it look like? Has it changed since the start of the pandemic?
    • What technology is present in this branch? How do customers interact with it?
    • Do you have employees in this branch? How many? What is their role?
    • What opportunities do you have for customer conversations in this branch?
    • How do you make sure that customers have plenty of options to get their basic transactions taken care?
    • How do you make sure they adopt these options?
    • Do you see this type of branch taking over for all of your branches? If yes, what is the timeline on something like this?
    • If no, how many do you think you’d like to have in your network? Could you test them in certain markets?
    • How are you balancing conversion of existing with new locations?
    • Do you have a 3-7 year Branching Roadmap and what does that entail?
    • Are you making sacrifices with brick and mortar investment vs. digital and what does that balance look like?

    Learn more
  • 2:15 pm - 2:45 pm

    2:15 pm - 2:45 pm

    Shawn Premer SPHR, SHRM-SCP, Chief Human Resources Officer,, Consumers Credit Union

    There is no reason for your branch staff to fear AI and Automation. These technologies are being added to your branches in order to make their lives easier and help customers in a more efficient way. In fact, automation removes some of the routine responsibilities that they might have and will allow to them have more in depth conversations with customers. Automation can make everything from customer onboarding to data entry to loan approval easier than it’s ever been. Having these things automated will make branch employees lives easier. AI & Automation can also help provide employees with a personalized view of each customer that walks in the door- augmenting their ability to provide assistance. So fear is not necessary- instead, excitement should be felt by branch employees who will only be helped by new technology such as this! Join this fireside chat to hear how one institution is using this new technology to help employees and improve customer experiences. OUr panelists will discuss:

    -             What technology have you invested in to augment the role of your employee? 

    -             How did you introduce this technology/these pieces of technology to your employees? 

    -             What was the training like for this technology?

    -             Did any sort of culture shift have to happen in order for your frontline employees to adapt to innovation?

    -             What have the results of this implementation been? Has it allowed for employees to focus more on helping customers? 

    -             Any other pieces of technology that you have yet to invest in that you think would help make your employees more efficient or would make their jobs easier?

    Learn more
  • 2:45 pm - 2:45 pm

    2:45 pm - 2:45 pm

Word On The Street


"Wonderful opportunity to see, hear and understand how bank's are adapting their branches based on the significant changes taking place in our industry. "

Dave Schwertfeger
Senior Director Channel Optimization


"I enjoyed the variety of presentations on topics relevant to our industry/market today.  Content is real and actionable.  Q&A opportunities make it possible to expand understanding."  

Kris King
VP of Retail Operations


"I found the sessions to be very informative and was able to bring back valuable information to my team."

Brian Eitniear
SVP, Corporate Services,
First Federal Bank of the Midwest

All Of The Major Players In One Place

Let’s Connect & Create A Custom Experience


Hi, I'm Rachel! I'm your Sponsorship Director for Future Branches Connect Virtual Event. I'm here to help you maximize your experience by designing a sponsorship to fit your exact needs. Reach out by clicking the button below and I’ll be in touch within 24 hours. 

Sponsorship Options To Fit Your Needs

1-To-1 Meetings

Guaranteed. Meet face to face with pre-qualified and profiled delegates who have identified they are currently sourcing your solutions, with budget to do so.

Speaking Roles

Whether as keynote speaker or joining a panel, your solutions will be showcased in front of a highly targeted (and engaged!) group of actual decision makers.

Roundtable Host

Interaction you'll love!  You control the conversation in this intimate setting with the senior level executives you want to advance your business.

Spend Insights

All delegates are profiled for spend areas and timelines to simplify your prospect search. Identify companies seeking your solutions in this unique report.

Our Audience Breakdown

Our Sponsors

How Our Virtual Events Work

Participating in a virtual event is easy. Once you and your team register, each of you will receive a link to access the presentations. You can also add the event to your Outlook or other calendar as a reminder. You do not need to download or install any software to participate. All you need is Internet access. The sessions will be recorded, and will be available for a limited time afterwards. It’s going to be a great event!

This event is exclusively for practicing executives from banks, credit unions and financial institutions. Solution providers to these organizations and others will not be allowed to attend. Please register with your full company name and your corporate email address or you risk not gaining admittance. WBR reserves the right to not admit registrants based on company type.