Honorary Degrees

Honorary Degrees

Rudy A. Hanley
  • Rudy A. Hanley
Rudy A. Hanley

CEO, SchoolsFirst Credit Union/Philanthropist

California State University, Fullerton

In making SchoolsFirst the country's largest educational credit union, Rudy Hanley's passion for business-education collaborations has shaped his considerable accomplishments as both an extraordinary business leader and a community philanthropist.

He was only 14 when his family fled Soviet-occupied Hungary in 1957 and moved to East Los Angeles, where he spent the first six months learning English with other immigrant children before being mainstreamed into public school.

After military service, Mr. Hanley returned to Southern California, earned a B.A. in mathematics and a teaching credential at the University of California, Irvine and taught math at Alhambra High School. Even with a wife, two daughters and a classroom full of high school students, he earned a J.D. from Western State University College of Law.

Inspired by the "people helping people" philosophy of the credit union movement, he worked for the California Credit Union League until 1982, when he was named to the helm of what was then known as the Orange County Teachers Federal Credit Union. As president and chief executive officer, Mr. Hanley has made SchoolsFirst the country's largest educational credit union and the seventh largest of all credit unions nationwide. His unwavering focus on SchoolsFirst's role as a good corporate citizen has earned broad recognition for its wide-ranging philanthropic endeavors, many centered on education and the needs of young people.

As an individual and as SchoolsFirst's CEO, Mr. Hanley has been extremely supportive of California State University, Fullerton for nearly twenty years. He was chairman of Cal State Fullerton's University Advisory Board and has served on the board of the Cal State Fullerton Philanthropic Foundation Board of Governors and on the Blue Ribbon Committee for Front & Center, the university's premier community outreach program.

He and his wife, Catherine (a 1993 CSUF alumna), have long been generous supporters of the Guardian Scholars and President's Scholars programs. Under Mr. Hanley's leadership, SchoolsFirst has become a major university benefactor and a source of support for programs in nearly every college, and the College of Education's largest donor since its inception in July 2005.

In recognition of his remarkable career achievements, philanthropic leadership, community service and exemplary dedication to the cause of education in general and this university in particular, the Board of Trustees of the California State University and California State University, Fullerton are proud to confer upon Rudy Hanley the honorary degree of Doctor of Humane Letters.