Having a physical presence in the communities we serve has always been a balancing act of providing the level of service our members need and expect from us with where it made good sense from a financial perspective. Historically, determining branch locations was primarily driven by moderate to high-population density of public service agencies in specific communities.
When we opened membership in our cooperative to serve the greater Washington community in 2013, it opened the door for us to add branches in areas our members have advocated for that were also wise investments of the money they entrust us with. It also gave us the opportunity to increase and expand our commitment of supporting our communities beyond providing financial services.
Our most recent additions over the last couple of years included Ellensburg, Puyallup (South Hill) and Federal Way (Dash Point). We're pleased to report the branches are happily serving existing members that were in these communities as well as newly acquired members that can take advantage of a not-for-profit credit union. The growth rates are looking good which reinforces the diligence we put into finding the right communities in which to re-invest our members' dollars.
With that theme, we're happy to announce another addition to the branch family. We'll be opening a community branch in the Bellevue market in September, totaling 21 branches statewide. We have King County members that have patiently waited for an "Eastside" presence to complement our other two Seattle locations. Additionally, as the Bellevue market continues to grow we need to be positioned in the community to serve members that align with the values of a cooperative. Keep an eye on our website and social media for information regarding the address and opening date as we get nearer to the fall season.
In this digital age where consumers are choosing to manage their finances more and more through online and mobile channels, it's still important to have a physical presence in key areas. This not only provides you, our members, a convenient place to handle more complex transactions that digital services can't, it also gives you the option to interact with us face-to-face in the friendly branch environment that WSECU is known for. A physical presence and a personal touch are things we believe there will always be a need for and we intend to meet that need. We're looking forward to continuing the support in our communities, now and in the years to come.
Gary Swindler, Chief Operating Officer