Melanie Hall is Montana’s Commissioner of Banking and Financial Institutions. In that role, she oversees our state-chartered credit unions, as well as state banks, mortgage brokers, consumer loan companies, and more. Find out more about the Division on their website.
Mel was a good sport about this “beyond the resume” interview to help you get to know her. The fun picture at the left is her with her daughter Mary Grace from a recent big birthday being celebrated.
- How do you describe your job to those who don’t know what a regulator is? It is my responsibility to make sure that financial service providers take care of the resources that consumers entrust to them and that they provide services in a way that is fair to both their customers and their members/shareholders.
- What was your most memorable experience in your role as commissioner? One good, one not so good: The best memory is speaking at the MCUN annual meeting with my daughter on my hip. My husband had a family emergency and I felt so grateful that my job could accommodate the circumstances of my life at that time. The not so good: Receiving a phone call while out of town that there had been a $3 million internal fraud at one of our institutions that left it with no equity.
- What do you think credit unions do really well? I think credit unions do a fantastic job of seeing the needs in their communities and finding inventive ways to try to meet those needs.
- What word would people use to describe you? Passionate.
- When we look back in 20 years, besides the financial crisis, what other current event will have long-term effects for credit unions? Financial technology is revolutionizing the financial services industry. Credit unions have an opportunity to partner with fintechs to expand the products and services they offer in an affordable way.
- If you could be any celebrity, who would it be? Ruth Bader Ginsburg
- What was your first job and how did it prepare you for this role? During high school and college summers, I worked at a fisheries research laboratory doing age and growth research on big game fish. The research we did was used to develop fisheries regulations. It helped to prepare me for this role because I know that the basis for good regulation is accurate data and it also helps me remember to ask “why is this the rule” when deciding how to proceed with enforcement.