Blackhawk Community Credit Union’s East Milwaukee Street branch lobby buzzed with customer activity on a late Friday afternoon, so much so that several customers waited their turn by taking a pit stop for a cup of hot coffee and a cookie in the building’s lounge.

Janesville resident David Dean, a member of the credit union since it was founded in the mid-1960s, watched a long line of customers—members of the credit union—waiting for a teller.

“There’s really something to be said about being a credit union member here,” Dean said.

The lively customer action at Blackhawk is case in point of a national and statewide trend—the rising popularity of the credit union. The Janesville-based union’s assets and its footprint have nearly doubled in Wisconsin since the beginning of the decade.

It’s now a $590-million institution—up from $346 million in 2011. Its 12 branches throughout the southern part of the state serve 51,000 members. That represents a footprint about three times the size of the average state- or nationally chartered credit union, according to records at the National Credit Union Administration.

Blackhawk Community Credit Union’s growth mirrors a national trend of burgeoning credit union popularity and assets.

Data from the Credit Union National Association shows the number of customers at credit unions nationwide has grown 21 percent since 2012.

Read more in The Janesville Gazette.