In January 2009, several community leaders started in pursuit of a dream to establish the Lakota Federal Credit Union to serve the people of the Pine Ridge Reservation. The proposed credit union would provide basic banking services to help the Oglala Lakota Oyate (people) achieve their financial goals, and in turn help the local economy on the Pine Ridge Reservation to thrive. This was a huge undertaking, as the Pine Ridge Reservation had not had a financial institution of its own since the Oglala Sioux Tribe accepted the Indian Recognition Act in 1935.
Lakota Funds anxiously agreed to sponsor the proposed Lakota Federal Credit Union. A steering committee comprised of knowledgeable, energetic, and hard-working individuals began the long and arduous process of establishing the first and only federally-insured financial institution on the 2.2 million acre Pine Ridge Reservation.
In August of 2012, the Lakota Federal Credit Union received its charter from the National Credit Union Association and officially opened its doors in November 2012. Even in its first day of operations, the Lakota Federal Credit Union made a big impact – opening 26 accounts and making one loan.
The Lakota Federal Credit Union continues to be one of our valuable community partners. We work with them on a number of initiatives to increase access to financial resources for our people. Our products and services complement each other and ultimately create greater benefits for our community members.