SANTA ROSA -- Redwood Credit Union and Cal State Central Credit Union have announced plans to merge as of April 1 and will operate under the name Redwood Credit Union.

The merger is pending approval from regulators, the National Credit Union Administration and the Department of Financial Institutions having already been approved by the boards of directors of both institutions.

The merger will result in an institution with assets in excess of $1.8 billion and nearly 200,000 member.

“CSCCU has served the financial needs of state employees and our community for nearly 75 years. In this environment, it’s been challenging to achieve the financial position and growth needed to provide the products, services and locations our members want and need. Our partnership with RCU will allow us to fulfill our mission and provide the added benefits our Members deserve,” said Jim Larson, Cal State Central Credit Union chief executive officer.

The merger is slated to be complete on April 1, but will be transparent to CSCCU’s nearly 16,500 members until their accounts transition to RCU on June 1, 2011. CSCCU currently offers four North Bay branches including a branch and corporate offices on Dutton Avenue in Santa Rosa, and branch sites in Sonoma, Glen Ellen and Rohnert Park. Members and employees have been notified of the impending merger, and RCU anticipates most CSCCU employees will be offered employment with RCU.

“Redwood Credit Union was identified as the ideal merger partner because they share our focus on quality member service, they have a long and proven history of financial stability and growth, they are committed to giving back to our communities, and they offer multiple locations in the North Bay and San Francisco to serve our members,” Mr. Larson said. Today RCU is the 68th largest of 7,800 Credit Unions nationwide, and is the 12th largest in California.

Upon completion of the merger, CSCCU’s membership will enjoy enhanced account access via RCU’s 15 branch and ATM locations in the North Bay and San Francisco, expanded branch and telephone center service hours, fee-free access to 28,000 nationwide network ATMs, and a host of free online services. Their members will also have new services—including first mortgage loans, small business services, investment products, insurance and auto purchasing services.

“RCU looks forward to serving the members from CSCCU and working with our new employees. Our industry’s philosophy is ‘people helping people,’ and this joining exemplifies that concept,” said Brett Martinez, RCU’s president and chief executive officer.