In memory: Chuck Snyder was a passionate and tireless advocate for cooperatives

Chuck Snyder speaks at the 2019 Cooperative IMPACT Conference.

NCBA CLUSA joins the cooperative community this week in expressing our deepest sorrow at the passing of Charles E. (Chuck) Snyder, a lifelong cooperator who spent 38 years at the helm of National Cooperative Bank (NCB) and served as an inspiration to mission-driven organizations everywhere.   

Over the years, NCBA CLUSA benefitted from Chuck’s leadership, where he served as a longtime director and former chair of NCBA CLUSA’s Board of Directors. “Chuck’s commitment to the cooperative community was unparalleled,” said Carla Decker, chair of NCBA CLUSA’s Board of Directors and president and CEO of DC Credit Union. “He was a mentor to many cooperative leaders over the years. He stood up for cooperative enterprises in the Halls of Congress and throughout the U.S. business community.” 

A passionate and tireless advocate for cooperatives across all sectors, Chuck was inducted into the Cooperative Hall of Fame in 2012. Throughout his career at NCB, Chuck was a champion of the cooperative movement and a vital partner in NCBA CLUSA’s work to develop, advance and protect cooperative enterprise. Chuck was especially attuned to helping socially disadvantaged communities establish cooperatives, and for cooperatives to act on the 6th Cooperative Principle—cooperation among cooperatives.  

“The cooperative community has lost one of its greatest leaders,” said Doug O’Brien, president and CEO of NCBA CLUSA. “Chuck’s contributions are immeasurable. While we mourn this loss, we are forever grateful for all that he contributed to the cooperative community.” 

Our thoughts and condolences are with the Snyder family and our colleagues at NCB, who shared the remembrance that follows.


NCB and the Co-op Community Mourn the Loss of a Co-op Hero

[photo courtesy James Madison University]
Charles E. Snyder (Chuck), a loving husband and father, a passionate advocate of cooperatives and true believer of people helping people, passed away unexpectedly November 6, 2021.

Chuck was born and raised in Pennsylvania Dutch Country and was the youngest of three boys. As a young child, he was given the nickname the “Blockheaded Dutchman” from his older brothers.

Chuck was extremely hardworking from a very young age. He attended James Madison University in Harrisonburg, Virginia and earned a CPA and a master’s degree from George Washington University in Washington, DC.

His lifelong career in cooperatives started in 1980 when he was hired as the President of Temporaries Federal Credit Union. In 1983 he was hired by the National Cooperative Bank as Corporate Vice President and  Chief Financial Officer. In 1992, Chuck was named president and CEO of National Cooperative Bank where he made his lifelong career.

For 38 years, Chuck led National Cooperative Bank to become a successful, socially responsible bank with a mission to ‘Do Well to Do Good”.

A strong and vocal advocate for cooperative values and principles, Chuck consistently looked for opportunities to advance cooperatives in all sectors and rose to their defense when cooperatives and their business model were threatened. A passionate believer in innovation and collaboration, he served on numerous cross-sector task forces and boards and played leadership roles in achieving many innovative landmarks for co-ops.

For his commitment to cooperatives, Chuck was inducted into the Cooperative Hall of Fame in 2012 and he received the Jerry Voorhis Award from the National Association of Housing Cooperative’s for his long-standing commitment to affordable housing cooperatives. In 2017, Chuck was the recipient of the Esther Peterson Consumer Service Award presented by the Consumer Federation of America for his commitment to consumer rights.

Outside of the office, Chuck loved spending time with his family especially on their family sailboat. From the Chesapeake Bay to Florida, Chuck was seen as the captain of the sea.

Anyone that met or worked with Chuck would describe him as compassionate. He truly cared about people and how he could make a difference in their lives.

Chuck’s lasting impact on the bank, cooperatives, and all who worked with him will be remembered forever.

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