The change of leadership follows the appointment of former division president Susan Ewanick to the role of chief member officer of First West, a new position within the credit union.
“Paulo is truly the heart and soul of our credit union,” said Ewanick in a news release about the appointment Thursday. “He has a strong reputation for building relationships, showing compassion for our members and employees and developing and sustaining deep connections in our local communities.
“Paulo is always putting our members’ needs first, leading our teams to ensure each member is receiving the right advice at the right time.”
With 20 years of financial services experience, Araujo has held a number of progressively senior positions during his career.
Starting as a front line member services advisor and working his way to branch manager before eventually taking on the role of senior manager of retail credit and then regional manager of retail banking in the South Okanagan for the company.
Araujo’s most recent role was vice president, retail and business banking, where he was responsible for the financial performance, leadership and overall strategic direction of Valley First’s banking teams.
He will provide leadership to the credit union’s locations throughout the Okanagan, Similkameen and Thompson valleys.
“Care and attention to the needs of others is a must,” says Araujo who is well known in the soccer circles locally. “I’ve learned to be charitable with my time, grateful for the opportunities to do better and optimistic in my outlook. I always try to conduct myself respectfully and professionally – traits I will bring to my new role. These are a few humble principles that I try to live by and found they have served me well.”
According to the release Araujo’s plans as president include working to develop and elevate staff through leadership and coaching.
“Our staff are dedicated and friendly and we offer great products,” he said in the release. “I am excited to continue working alongside them to serve the financial needs of our members and our communities so that we are known as the preferred choice in the financial industry.”