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Ms Dickie (47) joined the credit union in 2012 as chief operating officer, responsible for the day-to-day operations of the business.
She has been acting chief executive for six months.
''I look forward to stepping up permanently to the role of chief executive and building on the credit union's achievements in recent years,'' she said yesterday.
''My first task, in conjunction with the board, will be to assess the market opportunities for Credit Union South and develop and deliver on a strategy and plan to achieve this.''
As the third-largest credit union in New Zealand, and the largest in South Island, Credit Union South must continue to grow and develop all aspects of its services, products, how it delivered then and the technology choices for customers and members, she said.
The credit union was committed to improving the financial literacy of South Islanders and being part of the communities.
Credit Union South chairman Bevan Killick said several international candidates from top banking, credit union and various business backgrounds were evaluated for the position.
However, Ms Dickie emerged ''head and shoulders'' above the group of candidates.
Ms Dickie's previous roles within the financial services industry included work at AGC Finance, Westpac, FAI Finance and Baycorp New Zealand. A profile of Ms Dickie will follow.