Meet Paul Raffa, Business Development Manager, Southbridge Credit Union
Paul Raffa is the Business Development Manager at Southbridge Credit Union, in Southbridge, MA. His specialties include business development, public relations, corporate marketing, and commercial lending. Holding a marketing degree from Framingham State College, Raffa has worked in field marketing for Coldwell Banker and is about halfway through his MBA at Nichols College.
Raffa is also active in community endeavors. He is a member of the Central Mass South Chamber of Commerce and co-chair of the networking committee. Raffa serves as marketing chair on the board for SouthbridgeFEST. And he is on the executive committee of the Millbury Bicentennial Committee. I met with this energetic and creative professional to discuss the workings of Southbridge Credit Union, and I learned a few interesting tidbits which I am happy to share here.
Differentiating Factors: Southbridge Credit Union (SCU) is a non-profit institution that serves members of the community within about a 25 mile radius of its headquarters in Southbridge, MA. Membership is strong at 13,000 people, and SCU is #10 in the area. SCU has a voluntary board, so income goes directly back into the credit union rather than toward board member salaries. SCU offers seminars in the community, and has held programs at schools in order to teach kids about finances. SCU works cooperatively with other area credit unions via the Credit Union Service Organization. This group shares resources and staff, which helps to keep their costs and fees down.
Membership: Membership at Southbridge Credit Union is fairly open. The commercial side serves businesses of all sizes. Raffa is in charge of many programs for commercial members, such as banking, lending, and lunch-and-learn seminars on financial topics.
Success Story: Raffa tells of meeting with a business in Bolton which had been doing its lending with a large bank. Through his commercial lending program, Raffa helped this business cut their loan payment in half. No one at the large bank had told the business that they could get better financing rates, so they moved to SCU. By cutting loan costs, the business is now able to make more money and invest in their business. Raffa was also able to connect the company to a top-level corporate attorney, who now guides the business in its legal affairs.
Best Tip: On the topic of networking, Raffa strongly believes that it is a face-to-face game. Social media is great for staying in touch, but it is important to get involved offline. “Most of my business success comes from face-to-face meetings,” says Raffa.
Paul Raffa welcomes inquiries from business owners large and small who need lending, banking, and/or financial advice. Speaking from my own experience, Paul will go out of his way to help you reach your goals.
He can be contacted at:
Southbridge Credit Union
155 Main Street Southbridge MA 01550
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