A former Lifeway Credit Union leader has been charged with fraud and is accused of embezzling $242,000, FOX 17 news reported Oct. 28. Lifeway CU is a separate arm of Lifeway Christian Resources and provides financial services for employees, family, retirees and other related groups.
From October 2016 to February 2021, Monica Jackson, 42, of Murfreesboro, Tennessee, allegedly stole $242,156 from Lifeway Credit Union while she worked for the group as its operations and marketing director, according to the news report. The case is reportedly being investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and if convicted, Jackson could face more than 30 years in jail and be fined up to $1 million.
In response to the charges, Carol Pipes, director of communications for Lifeway, released the following statement:
“We are aware of the recent release by the United States Department of Justice that a former Lifeway Credit Union employee has been charged with fraud,” Pipes’ statement said. “Lifeway Credit Union is a completely separate legal entity from Lifeway Christian Resources, and at no time has the person in question, Monica Jackson, been an employee of Lifeway Christian Resources or had access to any Lifeway Christian Resources financial accounts/systems. No Lifeway Christian Resources funds were embezzled or mismanaged.”
FOX 17 news reported that court documents allege Jackson embezzled money from the credit union “using a variety of methods, including by stealing cash out of the vault.” According to the news report, Jackson is accused of “concealing the cash thefts from the vault, totaling more than $47,000, by placing small bills in bands of larger bills.” FOX 17 reports she also stole approximately $167,312 “by opening lines of credit in the names of family members and then transferring the funds to accounts she controlled.” She allegedly used one of the accounts to embezzle money from the account of a deceased credit union client that amounted to $25,000, the news report said.
The credit union was created in 1954 when Lifeway was known as the Baptist Sunday School Board.