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Lake Michigan Credit Union Announces Retirement of Chief Marketing Officer Don Bratt, Names Christi Cowdin as Successor

donLake Michigan Credit Union (LMCU) announces the retirement of Don Bratt, Chief Marketing Officer and Senior Vice President, effective Friday, June 14. LMCU’s Board of Directors is proud to recognize Bratt’s almost 14 years of dedicated service that have significantly contributed to the growth and success of LMCU.

Don Bratt joined LMCU in October 2010, coming from Chemical Bank (now part of Huntington Bank). Known for his unwavering dedication and positive attitude, Bratt quickly made an impact, organizing and expanding the marketing department into an internal advertising and communications firm. Under his leadership, the team created strategic marketing plans and compelling creative messages that effectively communicated LMCU's value to members and non-members alike. Bratt also spearheaded the development of a media production team responsible for LMCU's TV commercials and video communications, as well as leading the Community Relations team and the Community Advisory Board.

"Don's contribution to LMCU has been remarkable," said Sandy Jelinski, former President and CEO of Lake Michigan Credit Union, during the announcement of his retirement in April. Jelinski recently retired in March herself after working with Bratt throughout his tenure at LMCU. "His leadership, creativity, and commitment have helped build the LMCU brand, expand our presence in Michigan and Florida, and significantly grow our assets from $2 billion to over $13 billion.”

Julie Leonard, LMCU President and CEO, echoes Jelinski’s sentiments: “Don has had a profound, lasting impact on the legacy and trajectory of LMCU. As he begins this new chapter, we are grateful for his dedication and wish him all the best in his retirement."

Reflecting on his tenure, Bratt said, "I've loved my time at LMCU. Watching and helping individual team members grow and building meaningful relationships has been incredibly rewarding. Helping improve our 600,000 members' financial lives has given me purpose and made coming to work enjoyable and fun. I appreciate everything LMCU has done to help me grow in my career and the opportunity to work with some of the best leaders and marketers I've ever known."

As Bratt transitions to retirement after 43 years in marketing, LMCU is pleased to announce that Christi Cowdin, Vice President of Marketing, will assume the role of Chief Marketing Officer. Cowdin joined LMCU in July 2019 and has worked closely with Bratt to ensure a smooth transition. With over 25 years of experience in marketing, public relations, and corporate communications, Cowdin brings a wealth of expertise to her new role.

"We are fortunate to have Christi on our team," continued Leonard. "Her experience and leadership will continue to propel our marketing and community relations efforts. Christi is passionate about our brand, and I know she will be a key contributor in growing the LMCU brand in Michigan and Florida. We look forward to the future with great optimism.”

Cowdin most recently led the design, copywriting, media production, and project management functions of LMCU’s marketing team. Her broad career includes numerous marketing, communication, and investor relations roles at companies such as Wolverine World Wide, Inc., Lambert, and Horizon Global. Cowdin graduated from the University of Michigan with a Bachelor of Arts.

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