To TwinStar Credit Union, the community is everything. Since its inception, TwinStar has made a point not only to satisfy the financial needs of its members, but to also give back to the very community in which it does business. To that end, team members like Cedric Slaughter, the new community engagement manager, have made a career in both realizing financial dreams and making their communities a better place to live.
Born in Seattle, Cedric was the third of six children. “I’m used to competing,” he recalls, “as no one except the youngest got to be the baby for very long.” Not long after he was born, the family moved to the Hilltop neighborhood of Tacoma. After school, Cedric got a job at a construction company and worked there for four years. Then during one of the slow winter months, he was laid off. “I disliked being out of work,” he says. “With no room to advance, coupled with not feeling like my current job was my career calling anyway, I felt it was time for a change.”
Cedric’s desire for change happened with TwinStar. Originally brought on in a temporary position as a part-time call center technical support specialist, Cedric was told he had about seven months of work with no guarantee beyond that. “At the time, the credit union was revamping its entire online banking and mobile banking platforms,” says Slaughter. “The online banking facelift was experiment based. I learned in a trial-by-fire atmosphere as I went to work immediately. If the experiment was unsuccessful, they would just go back to the way things were before. Thankfully for me, the experiment was successful, and I was hired on permanently.”
Though still part time, Cedric remembers his experiences at the call center fondly. “I loved my time in the call center, helping our members and learning so much,” he says. “I think the call center is the beating heart of the credit union, and played an instrumental role in me progressing to a promotion to our Business Development team in 2016.”
Once promoted to a full-time position, Cedric seemed to find his true calling on the Business Development team. “Every day I get to go out into the community and meet someone new in both the markets I represent. TwinStar allows me to do this day in, day out, and is one of the monumental reasons why I love to come to work each and every day.”
“I spend a lot of my time plugging into the communities in which I serve,” continues Slaughter. “I support Pierce County, which has two locations, one in Lakewood and one in Spanaway. I also support Grays Harbor’s three locations in Aberdeen, Hoquiam and Ocean Shores. A typical week, in line with TwinStar’s strategic 2025 growth plan, is spent working with my team, branch managers and branch staff to best apply our resources in our markets.”
To that end, Cedric and team have partnered up with non-profits like the Emergency Food Network (EFN) to do that very thing. “The Emergency Food Network is doing some amazing things, and the fact that they have their headquarters, Mother Earth Farm, located right in my backyard in Lakewood is especially dear to me. At times growing up my family relied on organizations like EFN for food supplies so for me to lend my help any way I can is an automatic yes. I, and about nine or so of my colleagues, had the privilege to volunteer there for a couple hours repacking beans to be distributed to the local food banks. What a great time and day, what a rewarding team effort! I look for any and all opportunities to lend my support to this phenomenal organization. I recommend anyone who can to reach out for volunteering opportunities.”
Cedric must be doing something right. His hard work and dedication have gotten him recently promoted to Community Engagement Manager, where he is able to spend time in the community he grew up in, and work with other organizations to make it better.
Cedric’s team also digs deep in their commitment to education. “Our foundation in education, which is a pillar, and the reason we exist (we started out in a high school classroom). So to see the continued investments in education, whether it’s paying off school lunch debt, or tuition for students, or grants for teacher supplies, those are big for me, and especially in the community I live in.”
This desire to contribute to the community in its own way resides in the very heart of TwinStar’s culture, which really raises the bar against other financial institutions. “The organization provides so many opportunities for growth,” explains Slaughter. “I tell new employees who come through the new employee orientation that you can be or go wherever you want here. You couple that with our many products and services that can help individuals and businesses, backed with our organizational commitment/philosophy of helping anyone we can to realize their financial goals and dreams, I say TwinStar Credit Union stands apart from the rest.”
More information about TwinStar’s financial services and their ongoing commitment to their community can be found here.