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Meet The Team

headshot of Kris Pender Hanscom FCU chief human resources officer


Job Title: Chief Human Resources Officer for Hanscom FCU

Started working at HFCU: November 2019

What do you like best about working at Hanscom FCU? It’s definitely the people who work here. They’re genuine and caring about our members. We have employees who’ve been here for a long time, and that impacts our culture in such a positive way. There’s trust that’s built up over time, there’s credibility there. They understand how decisions are made and how we’ve grown over time, and that’s really valuable to have in an organization.

Tell us about a transformative experience you’ve had since you’ve started working at Hanscom FCU. We’ve been making donations to charitable organizations through our Foundation, and in the last year, we’ve been talking about reinvigorating our connections with them. When an opportunity came up for our senior team to participate on a panel with some of the kids at Crossroads, an organization we support, we jumped at the chance. (Crossroads empowers young people to unlock their potential and positively impact the world. Read more about our work with Crossroads here.)

I was in a virtual panel with our CEO and COO, answering the kids’ questions and telling them about credit unions, what they stand for, and what it’s like to work here, and near the end of the talk, one of the kids asked, “I want to understand budgeting.” My mouth nearly dropped open. We got back to the office and got our Partner Relations onboard to present programming to the kids in camp the following summer that not only taught them about budgeting, but also helped them to understand other financial issues. The whole experience made me realize that we’re not just a financial institution. We’re building real connections with our community, we’re helping people and creating a pipeline of new employees. Experiences like these help you get outside yourself.

What do you like to do in your free time? I like to go to the beach. I ski (favorite place: Waterville Valley). And of course, I love spending time with my kids!

What’s the best book you’ve read recently? The Vanishing Half by Britt Bennett. It was one of those novels where I lost myself in reading it.

What would be your advice for someone starting a career at Hanscom FCU? No matter where you are in your career—just starting out or well down the path—focus on the culture of an organization. You’re not just going into a job; you want to go somewhere where you feel like you belong and you’re valued. At Hanscom FCU, we put a lot of importance on our employees’ internal growth. We’re really proud that our employees choose to stay with us because they know they’re valued. We’re invested in not only their career growth, but who they are as human beings.

maria d hanscom fcu


Job Title: Human Resources Generalist

Started working at HFCU: November 2019

You have a small but noticeable library in your cubicle. Why do you enjoy reading? I fell in love with reading when I was in college. I had a professor who made us read the books he wrote. At first I thought he just wanted us to buy them so he could make money, but he was so passionate about politics and history in his books that I ended up buying all of them. He helped me see history in a different way, from a different perspective. I also had a professor obsessed with Don Quixote. From there, I started reading drama, horror, and thrillers. I always prefer reading a book to watching the movie about the book because a book lets me make up my own movie in my head.

It seems like everyone says they want to read more, but there are distractions like social media, streaming services, and life that get in the way. Do you have a tip that can help people carve out time to read?  Reading gives you an opportunity to escape reality, and it's actually a healthy choice for escaping! You can listen to audiobooks while you exercise, or even if you just have five minutes here and there, you can get some reading time in. And most of the time,  you'll end up reading more than five minutes. You just have to pick up the book and start reading.

What do you enjoy reading the most? I like to read motivational books because I like to learn about new ways of doing things or new habits that'll help me be more effective. I also like horror, thriller, and romance novels, plus history and drama. Basically I like anything that I can't put down once I start reading!

What are you reading now? I'm reading The 5-Second Rule, a motivational book by Mel Robbins, and two Stephen King novels.

You seem to enjoy reading about personal finance, too. What personal finance book has made the most impact on you? Definitely Dave Ramsey's Money Makeover. I was skeptical about it at first because I had been working in banking for ten years and knew how to help others get out of debt. But I realized I never thought about my own finances...I was thinking because my bills were paid, I was in good shape. I decided to follow his "baby steps" so I could do things I wanted, like travel and buy a home, without having any debt. Following those "baby steps" has helped me stay out of debt, and it feels good! 

What do you like best about working at Hanscom FCU? I came here from a big bank, and this is a much smaller environment. I love it because it feels like a big family. Hanscom FCU genuinely takes care of its employees and members; this is something I have personally experienced. At the end of the day, even a tough one, I don't feel burnout because I know my co-workers have my back and I have their support.