Ryan Ellsworth headshot

CEO Ryan Ellsworth Named Outstanding CEO of the Year

The County Federal Credit Union is pleased to announce that President & CEO Ryan Ellsworth was recently presented with the James M. Grotto Award for Outstanding CEO by the Maine Credit Union League at their annual convention on May 17, 2024.

The James M. Grotto Award for Outstanding CEO is given annually by the Maine Credit Union League to a deserving credit union CEO who has demonstrated outstanding leadership, led change and expansion, and created an atmosphere of inclusivity in their organization.

“Ryan stands out most by shining the spotlight away from himself and directly on his team,” said James Mattila, COO of The County. “Although he often deserves to take center stage with the many successes we experience under his leadership, he finds enjoyment in celebrating the successes of others.”

Ellsworth celebrates his tenth year as CEO of The County this year. He has served The County since 2004, when he was hired as Executive Vice President before his promotion to CEO in June 2014. In the last 10 years, he has guided the credit union’s growth from $196 million in assets to $460 million. This was a combination of organic growth, strong indirect lending growth, two mergers, and his strong leadership.

In October 2010, he played a crucial role in assisting with the merger of Houlton Federal Credit Union and again with Penobscot Federal Credit Union in 2020. In the early stages of the Penobscot merger, The County signed a management agreement with PCFCU, effectively putting The County’s leadership in charge of running both credit unions.

“Throughout that time, Ryan had the flexibility and experience to act as CEO of not just one, but two, credit unions,” said Dan Bagley, Executive Vice President of The County. “Managing one credit union is a challenge, but two at the same time is a juggling act not for the faint of heart.”

Under Ellsworth’s leadership, The County has grown from 17,325 members to over 30,000 in Aroostook, Penobscot, and Piscataquis counties. Also, during his tenure as CEO, The County has grown from the 10th largest to the 7th largest credit union in Maine. The County has repeatedly been named a Best Place to Work in Maine for several years and is lauded as a supportive and friendly place to work.

“Ryan often says that if you take care of your employees, they’ll take care of our members,” said Bagley. “And he’s right. He creates a culture of supporting and mentoring his employees while enjoying what we do.”

Among the many CEO duties that Ellsworth undertakes to grow The County, he is also known for cooking hamburgers and hot dogs for members at cookouts, shining tractors for parade floats, and writing hand-written notes to coworkers to thank them for their contributions to the credit union.

“Ryan stands out as a result of his industry expertise, years of dedicated service, countless hours of volunteerism, and portrayal of ethics and integrity in every communication and decision he makes,” said Mattila.

A video compiled by the Maine Credit Union League can be viewed below.