The three finalists in the inaugural competition presented their ideas to attendees of THINK 11 in Anaheim, Calif., the morning of April 17. Weidler was announced the winner at the conference's awards reception that night. The two other finalists were:
The $10,000 award to Weilder was presented by CO-OP Financial Services and CO-OP THINK Prize sponsor MasterCard.
Weidler's idea of cellular ATM access is at its core a customer convenience initiative. It provides members with the convenience of being able to utilize ATMs through a second mechanism of their choice in the event that their debit card has been forgotten or they prefer not to carry it with them.
"In his video presentation, Matt related that many times he has headed off to the ATM, then had to turnaround because he realized he didn't have his debit card with him," said Caroline Lane, Senior Vice President, Business Development and Marketing for CO-OP Financial Services. "He asked himself, why not be able to access the ATM via his mobile phone - which he always has with him?
"One of the key criteria for the CO-OP THINK Prize was impact. His idea clearly resonated with the competition voters," said Lane. "We congratulate Matt, Shari and Candace for their remarkable ideas and look forward to each of those ideas becoming a reality in the not too distance future."
The CO-OP THINK Prize was announced in April 2010 at last year's THINK Conference. The three finalists were selected by judges from CO-OP Financial Services and the Filene Research Institute based on four main standards for their ideas - impact, creativity, aggregation (the application of the idea across the industry) and implementation (the ability to be adopted quickly).
The final decision on the winner was based on the voting of the judges, online voting at the THINK 11 website April 15-May 6 and that of registered THINK 11 attendees.
Entries for the CO-OP THINK Prize for 2012 open May 18 at www.co-opthink.org.
About CO-OP Financial Services
Based in Rancho Cucamonga, Calif., CO-OP Financial Services is the industry leader in access and convenience products for credit unions. Nearing 30 years of credit union service, CO-OP connects credit union members to their accounts through network, payment processing, e-commerce, shared branching and call center services. With more than 3,000 credit union members, 30 million cardholders, 28,000 surcharge-free ATMs, 4,200 shared branch locations and more than two billion annual transactions, CO-OP Financial Services is the nation's largest credit union service organization, offering the tools, counsel and leadership to help credit unions prosper. To learn more, visit www.co-opfs.org. Follow CO-OP on Twitter at: http://twitter.com/COOPFS and keep up with industry issues via the CO-OP Insight Vault blog at: http://co-opinsightvault.com.