Teachers Credit Union announces promotions and new hire

Teachers Credit Union has promoted Jeff Benefiel to Vice President of Digital Delivery and Payments, Joshua Neff to Vice President of Commercial Lending, Sandy H. Burd to Assistant Vice President of Payments and Digital Fraud and Sharri Tafelski to Assistant Vice President of Branch Operations and Project Management. In addition, TCU has hired Kara Kelly as Manager of Public Relations.

Jeff Benefiel joined TCU in 2006. In his new role as Vice President of Digital Delivery and Payments, he will focus on enhancing the digital experience for members, including TCU’s digital and mobile payment processing services and platforms. Benefiel, who formerly served as TCU’s Vice President of Information Technologies, graduated from Purdue University with a bachelor’s degree in computer information systems.

Joshua Neff, who joined TCU in 2015 as a Commercial Loan Officer, was promoted to Vice President of Commercial Lending. In his new role, Neff will lead and manage commercial lending at TCU, providing capital for businesses of all sizes. Neff brings over 20 years of extensive banking experience primarily in the corporate finance arena. He received a bachelor’s degree from Wabash College and an MBA from Bethel College.

In her new role as Assistant Vice President of Payments and Digital Fraud, Sandy H. Burd will leverage her experience in developing cutting-edge tools to mitigate risk and protect members. With TCU since 1990, Burd has extensive fraud detection experience having served on First Data Corporation’s Community Banks Fraud Detection Committee and as vice president of its STAR Network fraud detection group. In 2007, she received a Credit Union National Association (CUNA) Experience Learning Live! (ELLy) Award for establishing an innovative, technology-based employee-training program.

Sharri Tafelski continues her role with the Project Management office but with the added responsibility of managing branch operations. Granted the prestigious Project Management Professional certification from the Project Management Institute (PMI) in 2014, Tafelski has held a variety of roles in 27 years at TCU, including Service Center Manager, Director of Marketing, and Manager of Information Systems. Tafelski holds an associate degree in organizational leadership from Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne. Since 2015, she has served as vice president of programs for the PMI Michiana Chapter.

Kara Kelly has more than 20 years of experience in higher education, government, publishing and media. As Special Assistant to the President at Saint Mary’s College from 2016-2019, she assisted with the management of college-wide projects and initiatives and provided public relations support on the president’s behalf. From 2013-2016, Kelly served as Director of Communications for the City of South Bend, joining Mayor Pete Buttigieg’s administration after 12 years as Director of Communications for the University of Notre Dame School of Architecture. Kelly received bachelor’s degrees in communication and humanistic studies from Saint Mary’s College.