A little fun and education as we are celebrating our 36th anniversary.

Oak Tree Celebrates 36 years of business working in the credit union community


Oak Tree Business Systems, Inc.
Richard Gallagher
17 July 2019

Get the Insights on What Makes a Devoted Vendor
To commemorate the anniversary we ask the CEO some probing questions
Costa Mesa, CA July 2019 — Oak Tree has been in the credit union business continuously for 36 years, developing, supporting, and maintaining lending and operational documents for credit unions in all 50 states, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands. To honor the 36th anniversary we thought we would ask Richard Gallagher some questions to find out more about the man who leads this company today.
Q: Is there a funny joke you love telling?
Frustrated parents of twins visit a psychologist with their concerns about their children being polar opposites, one extremely pessimistic, the other extremely optimistic. The psychologist takes their case and the parents leave the twins for treatment. Days later, the parents return to see firsthand how the treatment is going. In the 1st room, their extremely pessimistic child is surrounded by the most expensive and very best toys a child could ever want. The child is busily breaking every toy all the-while yelling “these toys are horrible, they’re too shiny, they just break when you play with them, I’ve already played with this one and I’m bored with it…”. The psychologist lets the parents know that he’ll need a little more time with their pessimistic child. Next, they enter the room where their optimistic child has been spending their time in treatment. In the middle of the room is an above-ground pool full of manure. Their optimistic child has been actively digging holes all over in the manure. When asked by all 3 shocked onlookers why, the child simply says “with all this crap, there’s gotta be a pony in here somewhere!”…
Q: Do you have a motivational quote you go by every day?
“Okay, so now what” 🙂
Q: Say a random fun fact that we would have never figured out.
Termites taste like carrots.
Q: If you could name 3 characteristics about yourself, what would they be?
      1. I love working out. There’s just something about intense workout that clears my mind, body & soul.
      2. I love to laugh. Days go by better with laughter mixed in with the seriousness of things.
      3. I’m a bit metaphysical about things. I prefer & appreciate things happening that are more organic in nature.
Q: What was your dream job as a child?
Superhero 🙂
Q: What was your first job and how was it like?
First real job was at Union76. I started as a “pumpjockey” pumping gas, checking oil & washing windows. I really wanted to be a mechanic, which happened next. I guess being a mechanic was my way of keeping busy until computers hit the consumer & business world. Then it was all over! :-)))
Q: If you could change anything about your past work experiences, what would it be?
I’m 100% certain I wouldn’t. Everything, even the more trivial and perhaps unrelated work I’ve encountered in my past has prepared me for my current role (or “roles”, I should say).
Q: Did you know you wanted to be a CEO of a company when you were a kid?
Yes, definitely. I’ve been in love with the “flow of business” and the interactions of others’ intersecting interests since I can remember. There’s just something about it that gets me going. Sort of like quantum physics but in the business realm.
Q: How has it been working at Oak Tree?
Extremely challenging, but supremely gratifying. I think it’s pretty rare these days to claim nearly 30 years in the same career that’s still challenging, still rewarding (not just speaking financially) and still very exciting.
Q: What do you do when you have a huge workload on your shoulders and need time to recuperate?
I row, and row, and row…..then play a video game.
Q: Did you go straight into working as a CEO for Oak Tree or did you start off in another position?
Oh my, no way. It’s been a long, long tough road. I started at zero salary, commission only and had no earthly idea what I was doing!
Q: Do you enjoy your job as CEO?
Very much, I do what I love every day.
Q: What do you expect out of all your employees?
Loyalty & honesty (to the company and to themselves). That each truly try and enjoy their lives -> “Work to live” instead of “Live to work.”
Q: Where do you see the company in the foreseeable future?
Oak Tree’s always been working on the “what’s next” out there and today’s era is no different. Exciting changes are coming that will continue to solidify us as our industry leader in forms & disclosure content. I’d say more but…. 🙂
The short answer is continuing to serve our industry with respect, responsibility and accountability, just as we’ve done for the past 36 years.
Q: Looking back at your childhood, is there anything you would have told yourself when times were rough?
“Nothing is at last more sacred than the integrity of your own mind”. –Emerson
….this gave me mental/psychological “protection” against the sometimes surprising (oftentimes shocking) and seemingly overwhelming odds & situations that I’ve faced over and over. Very helpful.
For more information on Oak Tree please visit

About Oak Tree Business Systems, Inc.

Oak Tree has been in the credit union business continuously for over 35 years, developing, supporting and maintaining lending and operational documents for credit unions in all 50 states, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands. Forms are your credit union’s tools of the trade. Ideally, these forms integrate seamlessly with your technology for streamlined performance. More importantly, they must comply with both state and federal standards or your credit union could face serious liability. This is why Oak Tree Business Systems is a reliable source for credit union forms year after year.


(note: this is an older blog entry and has been edited since originally posted.)