History

Since 1934, members have been our first priority

When the banks in town weren’t meeting their needs, workers at an Omaha telephone company started a credit union with just $49 in deposits and seven members. What was the Omaha Telephone Employees Federal Credit Union is now Centris Federal Credit Union. But from 1934 until today, one thing has remained constant – our members’ financial well-being is our first priority!

Credit Union History and Foundation

In 1934 the employees started their credit union with less than $50 in deposits; by the end of 1934 our asset size had grown to $664. The maximum secured loan was $50 and the maximum unsecured loan was $25. Back then, the credit union was open for only a half hour one day per week, or by special appointment.

As times and economic circumstances changed over the years, so did our name. From the Omaha Telephone Employees Federal Credit Union in 1934 to Bell Federal Credit Union in 1974 to Centris Federal Credit Union in 2000, we’ve kept up with the changing economic environments and our changing membership groups. In the beginning we served only employees of Northwestern Bell Telephone, but now we serve a broad base of members who work or reside in several different Nebraska and Iowa communities. This new broader member base is much more diversified and inclusive – but we’re still proud to have a percentage of telephone employee members after all these years.

For Over 80 Years … Your Life Long Financial Partner

Centris was founded by members who felt their needs were not being met by other financial institutions. Their solution was to create a credit union where they and other members could have a life-long financial partner to help them meet their needs and learn how to manage money for their benefit. While Centris Federal Credit Union has grown greatly over the years and now offers our members many financial options that didn’t exist in 1934, we still remain true to the principles upon which we were founded. We are here to serve you and assist you in achieving your financial needs and goals.

Pearl Scheid photo

Who’s Always Been #1 at Centris? Our Members!

Ever since Pearl Scheid was the first person to sign the Omaha Telephone Employees Federal Credit Union charter in 1934, we’ve been working hard to meet the needs of our members. Back then, when Scheid contributed her $7 to the pool of funds, only $49 was needed to charter a credit union, and it was just enough to pay for ledgers and office supplies to get the enterprise up and running.

Fifty years later, in 1984, Scheid told the Omaha World-Herald in an article celebrating Bell Federal’s 50th year: “I never doubted the success of the credit union.”  Now, with over 80 years behind us, we are looking forward to fulfilling our commitment to being a life-long financial partner for our members for many years to come.

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