- Category: Notable Credit Union Leaders
- Number of years working in your current industry: 40
- Undergrad degree/university: Bachelor of Business Administration, Lubar School of Business, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
In the past year and a half, Gary Szpara has put his 40 years of business-lending experience in southeastern Wisconsin to use in a challenging time for businesses.
As vice president-business services at Summit Credit Union, which provided the most Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans among credit unions in Wisconsin and the third most among all financials in 2020, Szpara offered guidance and support to business members and the greater business community.
In his current role as chairman of the board of the New Berlin Chamber of Commerce, Szpara has leveraged his knowledge of the program to provide the chamber’s membership (about 250 small businesses) with information on navigating PPP applications, regulations and what other businesses were doing to survive and thrive. It triggered lots of gratitude from the business community.
“He’ll say, ‘No matter what you want, come to me first, and I can help with Summit,’” said Kim Sponem, CEO/president of Summit Credit Union.
Szpara also contributes to his home community as the market manager for the New Berlin Farmers’s Market for the past three years, and he is active in the Metropolitan Milwaukee Association of Commerce (MMAC) and the Waukesha County Business Alliance.