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SAN JOSE, CA – May 11, 2017

Meriwest and Autoland, LLC Partner to Support Local Non-Profit

Assistance League of San Jose’s Readers are Leaders Program

Meriwest Credit Union was proud to recently sponsor Assistance League of San Jose with a $3,000 grant through Autoland, LLC - Auto Buying's charitable grant program. The funds will help support ALSJ's Readers are Leaders program.

“It’s truly gratifying to partner with Autoland to support such an amazing group of volunteers shaping the future by teaching children the gift and reward of reading,” said Julie Kirsch, President & CEO of Meriwest Credit Union. “Comprehension, language, culture and discovery are just some of the gifts that influence a reader for life and it’s our privilege to play a small role in making a difference.”

“Thank you Meriwest Credit Union for allowing us the opportunity to help support such an amazing program like Readers are Leaders,” said Rixie Lowden, Autoland VP of Business Development. “Great leaders have many exceptional habits, one of them being reading, so we were honored with this opportunity to help mold and develop tomorrow’s role models, mentors and leaders.”

Established in 2007, the purpose of Readers Are Leaders is to instill the love of reading in young students by having volunteers read in classrooms on a regular basis. Assistance League of San Jose members entertain, enlighten and encourage students as they read quality, age-appropriate literature. Six times during the school year, volunteers visit second and third grade classrooms. On each visit, they read two books that are then donated to the classroom library.  In 2016 alone, the program served 9 schools that contributed over 600 books to the classrooms, reaching over 1,200 children.

"With the help of the grant from Meriwest and Autoland, Assistance League was able to give the gift of learning to 1,257 second and third -graders by delivering one National Geographic Children’s Encyclopedia to each child to take home for their very own,” said Readers are Leaders program co-chair Kathy Mangan. “These might be the only books that these children get this year and they are very excited to receive them."

About Meriwest Credit Union
Meriwest Credit Union, one of Silicon Valley’s largest and established financial institutions, has been providing proactive, personal, convenient and innovative financial services to over 72,000 businesses and families throughout the San Francisco Bay Area and Tucson, Arizona, for more than 50 years. More information can be found at

About Assistance League of San Jose
Assistance League of San Jose is an all-volunteer, nonprofit organization whose members have had a passion for supporting vital community services since 1983 and who donate thousands of volunteer hours yearly. Their philanthropic programs are designed to serve unmet needs in our local community.  More information can be found at

About Autoland, LLC - Auto Buying
Autoland is the nation’s premier car buying service for members of credit unions, and affinity groups, in fifteen states. Founded in 1971 with the belief that people deserve a better car buying experience, Autoland has provided hundreds of thousands of satisfied drivers with a convenient and hassle-free means to purchase a vehicle at a great value.  More information can be found at

Photo Caption (left to right): Meriwest President & CEO, Julie Kirsch, Assistance League of San Jose’s Barb Nobler, Donna Christian and Jerri Kazmierczak, Autoland, LLC’s Lisa Lomeli and Rixie Lowden, Assistance League of San Jose’s Rocki Kramer, Kathy Mangan and Sharon Bynum and Meriwest Credit Union’s Senior Vice President and CXO, Tony Cortez.

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