Members First Credit Union, Inc. was originally founded in June, 1957 as Big Bear Employees Credit Union. For many years, membership in the credit union was only available to employees and retirees of Big Bear Stores Co. During the 1990’s, the credit union evolved into a full-service financial institution, offering its members a full array of deposit, lending, transactional and convenience products and services.
Over the next couple of decades, Members First continued its diversification efforts by adding additional employer groups and expanding its charter to serve anyone living, working, worshiping or attending school in Franklin County, Ohio. Also during that time, the credit union became very active in Grandview, Marble Cliff and surrounding communities by providing scholarships annually to area high school students, actively participating in the Grandview/Marble Cliff Area Chamber of Commerce, and sponsoring many community events throughout the year.
By the end of 2003, Big Bear Stores announced that it would cease operations. In March of 2004, the credit union moved into a newly-built facility, located in the heart of the Grandview/Marble Cliff area so it could focus on and become a true part of its surrounding community. At the time it became part of Pathways Financial Credit Union, Members First was serving over 7,000 members and had $52 million in assets.