Dow Federal Credit Union is changing its name to Essential Federal Credit Union.

In addition, Baton Rouge-based Essential FCU will distribute its first bonus dividend to all members. The dividend of $250,000 will be distributed Friday. All members of Essential FCU are eligible for a portion of dividends, based on length of membership and deposit relationship with the credit union.

The community-chartered credit union has more than $249 million in assets, with 24,000 members across East and West Baton Rouge, East and West Feliciana, Ascension, Livingston, Iberville, Pointe Coupee and St. Helena parishes.

Spokesman Jay Connaughton said the name better reflects the credit union’s mission and purpose: being an essential part of the community and providing the crucial financial services that members need. The new name could also make it easier to expand, when Essential does so, he added.

The credit union was founded in 1972 by a small group of Dow Chemical employees. It provides financial services for individuals and businesses, including loans and checking, IRA and savings accounts. The credit union has more than $249 million in assets.

The credit union was founded in 1972 by a small group of Dow Chemical employees. It provides financial services for individuals and businesses, including loans and checking, IRA and savings accounts. The credit union has more than $249 million in assets.