If you’re looking for someone who takes his job seriously when it comes to making the community better, look no further than Teachers Credit Union’s Brandon Hearne, manager of its Gary branch.
“TCU is all about community involvement, so what I enjoy most is that I get to go out and find ways that I can be involved in the Gary community through my job,” Hearne said.
A native of Gary, Hearne has a natural passion for bringing TCU and the programs it offers to the community to help individuals and families attain financial health.
“Many people don’t know that TCU is here and that we have a lot of great programs which can really help them,” Hearne said. “If we can truly help someone, why not take the time to go out and make sure they get the assistance they need.”
During his last years at Indiana University Northwest, Hearne applied for a part-time teller position with TCU in South Bend. For several months he commuted from Gary and when a position for a banker opened locally, he applied and was offered it.
“I was bold enough to go after it,” he said.
From there, he continued to advance, eventually taking a position as assistant manager. When the Gary branch needed a temporary manager, he gladly filled those shoes. During that time, Hearne’s hard work and community involvement helped the Gary branch soar to the top-performing branch in the region, leading TCU to offer him the permanent position of manager. At age 26, Hearne is the youngest person to serve as a TCU branch manager.
Hearne has been managing the Gary branch for about a year now and its performance continues to improve. He attributes its success to his team’s dedication to the Lake County community.
“We’ve been successful because we love to be involved in the community and get our faces and the TCU name out there,” Hearne said. “We go to schools, chamber events, basically supporting any event that we can get to.”
One of Hearne’s many joys is leading financial presentations. It is a chance for him to use his education degree and experience in the classroom.
“I enjoy going out and giving that presentation, talking to students and those who need greater financial literacy and steering them on a path to a better financial future,” Hearne said. “As a young black male, I can be a role model showing other young black males that you can succeed in banking and there are multiple entry routes into a career,” he said.
When Hearne isn’t working, his talent often goes into community theater, including at the Gary Shakespeare Company where he’s served on its board of directors. He has also been taking sign language classes to boost a skill set he needs as a part-time mentor to children with disabilities.
“One of my clients is non-verbal, so I started learning sign language. My dad was a special education teacher, so I knew a little bit, but I really want to learn more,” Hearne said.
Beyond dreaming of traveling through Europe with his wife, he says his top aspiration is to own a car dealership and run a school. Lofty goals, but if anyone can do it, Hearne certainly can.
No matter what Hearne does, he tackles it with a commitment to his community, knowing it’s the key to success in life.
“Giving back is the most important and valuable thing that we as human beings can do,” Hearne said. “When you make the most of every opportunity and boost your community involvement it’s incredibly rewarding and provides a great sense of accomplishment.”