NCUA Board Member Todd M. Harper
Statement on the Retirement of Executive Director Mark Treichel
June 25, 2020
Thank you Mark for your more than three decades of service at the NCUA. For those who know Mark Treichel well, you can always count on him to identify the perfect quote for any occasion.
In the coming months, Mark and his wife, Marie, plan to travel the United States in their new recreational vehicle. As such, I thought I should begin with a quote from Will Rogers, best known as America’s Cowboy Philosopher, who also traveled widely around our country.
Rogers once wryly observed, “Half our life is spent trying to find something to do with the time we have rushed through life trying to save.”
Mark, without question, you have had a long and distinguished career at the agency. You have also had the longest tenure of anyone in the Office of the Executive Director. That’s a testament to your outstanding policy, management and leadership skills. What is more, you served as the Executive Director under four different NCUA Chairmen.
Chairman Hood has just shared his thoughts on your retirement, and Board Member McWatters will offer his observations shortly.
I thought we should also hear from former Chairmen Matz and Metsger today, so I reached out to each of them.
Chairman Matz asked that I share how important you were to her during her time at the NCUA. She could always count on your expertise, calming manner and extraordinary leadership skills to advise her every day. With good reason, you had the respect and affection of all NCUA staff.
She wishes you all the best in retirement and can tell you from firsthand experience that even though you will miss all of your NCUA friends, there is life—really good life—after the NCUA.
Former Chairman Metsger also praised “your calm and reasoned approach to a myriad of difficult situations” which he said was “always admired.” If he had been here today, he would have said, “You are now commissioned to do ‘entirely offsite examinations’ of everywhere in America that RV of yours will take you. See you on the Oregon Trail.”
As for me, I am deeply appreciative of the support you provided me when I headed the Office of Public and Congressional Affairs and when I returned to the NCUA as a Board Member. I will miss your caring heart in supporting the agency’s philanthropic efforts and your competitive spirit when it comes to Big Ten sports. Please do not ever ask me to wear a University of Minnesota sweatshirt ever again.
I am especially appreciative of your composed and unruffled demeanor, which probably comes from your Midwestern roots. When problems would arise at the agency, I could count on you to provide a steady hand to steer the ship. I also appreciated your deliberateness and your ability to see any task through, no matter how complicated.
Under your leadership, we have strengthened the agency’s security and continuity of government programs and initiated the first comprehensive overhaul of our examination technology in more than two decades.
Your efforts were also critical to resolving the corporate credit union crisis and the establishment of the NCUA Guaranteed Notes program.
You can leave the NCUA knowing that you made the credit union system and the agency safer, sounder, and more resilient.
I began these remarks by quoting Will Rogers, so it’s fitting that I close them with the quote of another Mr. Rogers, Mr. Fred Rogers. “Often when you are at the end of something, you’re at the beginning of something else.” Mr. Rogers is absolutely right, Mark. May your retirement be long, healthful, adventurous and prosperous. May it also be the beginning of something big. Be well, my friend.