The P.A.

A weekly address from Patrick Adams,
President of St. Louis Community Credit Union

We’ll miss you. Onward & upward.

On July 17th, 2017, posted in: Uncategorized by

white rose and candlesHubert Hula Hoosman Jr., “Hoos,” passed away on July 3. He was a dear friend of close to 40 years and as good of stock as you would find. I loved Hoos. He lit up every room, broke barriers with a smile and a kind word, and never met a stranger. Yeah, yeah, that’s what they say about everybody. I don’t know everybody, but I knew Hoos, and that’s not a trite cliché used to describe him — it’s the truth.

In 2012, I was asked to write a letter to recommend Hoos for a national credit union award. The Herb Wegner Award is the most prestigious of credit union honors, and Hoos was a worthy recipient. This is what I wrote in my letter on June 19, 2012, just a little over five years before his death.

 

As I was Hubert’s first boss when he entered our credit union movement, I have a history like no other.  As he was on the day he started, his passion and commitment for helping people remains as strong as ever.  We are a better credit union movement because of Hoos’ presence. 

I could tell you of Hubert from my head, but I would rather speak of him from my heart.  Sure, he meets all of the criteria of a credit union leader.  The numbers attached to his many accomplishments speak volumes about his ability to have a vision, develop a strategy, execute on said strategy, and implement refinement and improvement over time.  True enough, there are dozens of those guys and gals out there.  Pick one and “plaque” ‘em.  But Hoos adds a twist.  His accomplishments are but a by-product of a helping heart and a helping hand.  First and foremost his compass is “due north,” for the betterment of the community he calls home.  After that, the rest is nothing more than honoring God by helping people.  Sort of makes him the perfect credit union guy, don’t you think.   

Look, I’ve lost track of all the good he has done and the hardware he’s collected along the way.  Somebody with a better organizer than mine would have to speak to the highlights of his many works.  Suffice to say, his accomplishments are countless—all deserved. 

His magnanimous personality and infectious laugh is one that has bridged race, age, gender, and socio-economic strata.  In an industry dominated by white guys (I am one), Hoos has never shied away from the pride he feels in his African-American heritage.  He has conquered stereotypes, stigmas and “made-up ceilings to advancement” to be one of very best in an industry full of the very best.  He is my “twin brother from separate mothers” and I am the better off for it. 

Ms. Collins, this is probably not the best of letters crafted to outline one’s accomplishments.  I truly don’t remember all of the accolades bestowed upon my friend.  I have thought long and hard.  I got nothing.  When a man’s entire career is made up of success and acknowledgments, they all run together.

I will tell you this though…I have few friends, and those I have are real not just smiling acquaintances that pass on the street.  Therefore, I don’t boast of quantity—a single diamond out values tons of stone.  Hoos is a diamond to me and (my guess) to hundreds of others who have had the privilege to be around him.

 

P.S. He won the award. RIP, my brother…we’ll miss you. Onward & upward.

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