LAFCU Recognizes Harold Foster for 37 Years of Service as Board President
LAFCU’s longtime board president, Harold Foster, has passed the torch after serving in the position for the past 37 years. Randy Freeman, past president of UAW Local 652 Lansing and LAFCU board member for 11 years, was nominated by Foster to serve as his successor and was unanimously voted in by the LAFCU Board of Directors as the credit union’s next board president.
“On behalf of the employees and LAFCU’s more than 74,000 members, we are forever grateful for Harold’s stalwart leadership,” said LAFCU CEO Patrick Spyke. “He has cemented a legacy at LAFCU. His guidance through the ups and downs of the past 37 years has helped support technological innovation, excellence in member service and phenomenal growth. Although no longer president, we’re extremely pleased Harold has agreed to remain on the board to continue his positive impact.”
LAFCU’s assets increased nearly 20-fold from $50 million when Foster became board president in 1985 to $973 million in 2022. During his tenure, LAFCU also expanded its portfolio to include ownership in CUSOs, such as Member Driven Technologies, Commercial Alliance, and Member First Mortgage. Additionally, the organization completed three mergers, which significantly grew and expanded the credit union’s footprint in Michigan.
“It has been a real honor and privilege to serve as LAFCU’s board president for almost four decades,” said Foster. “The credit union has allowed me to put into action the causes and things most near and dear to my heart: the value of community service, the importance of relationships and helping others, and advocating for the greater good.”
A Georgia native, Foster grew up in Lansing and graduated from J.W. Sexton High School. He currently lives in St. Johns, Michigan with his wife, Sherry, and will continue to serve as a board member and LAFCU volunteer, a role he has faithfully served since 1985.
“I’ve always thought of Harold as a pillar in the community and within LAFCU,” said Randy Freeman, president of LAFCU Board of Directors. “He embodies the credit union philosophy of ‘not for profit, but for service.’ I’m grateful to Harold for remaining on the board, as his advice and mentorship have made us all better people and professionals and will help me succeed in my new role.”
Foster’s legacy is a long and distinguished record of service and advocacy for issues such as diversity, equity and inclusion. Foster and the board appointed an African American female as LAFCU’s interim CEO nearly 20 years ago, and they formalized the organization’s DEI effort by establishing a chief diversity officer position in 2020.
He was also an integral part of the “Save GM” campaign, which successfully convinced General Motors to keep its plants and presence in Lansing, Michigan, saving thousands of jobs and resulting in continued economic growth for the Lansing region. As board president, Foster recognized recreation as an important aspect of quality of life and was a proponent of the Lansing Lugnuts partnership and LAFCU Fireworks, which thousands enjoy annually.
“Being people's 'credit union for life' is something I take to heart – as it means you are there for people in both their highs and the lows,” said Foster. “It's gratifying to know LAFCU has made a huge difference for so many people over the years, and I’m grateful for the opportunity to continue serving the credit union and its members.”