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ICBA Staff Builds on Alliance with Habitat

Washington, D.C. (July 2, 2004) - Independent Community Bankers of America (ICBA) continued its ongoing commitment to supporting homeownership Saturday when ICBA employees celebrated the end of Homeownership Month by volunteering to help renovate four Habitat for Humanity homes in Annapolis, Md.

"We worked hard. It was a rewarding day for all of us," said Tony Sidiropoulos, ICBA's director of marketing, who coordinated and participated in the volunteer effort. "We all pitched in to help families repair a roof and shore up a foundation on some historic homes scheduled to be ready in September. It was a great feeling to help people on their way to becoming homeowners for the very first time. We're all excited to volunteer again soon."

ICBA and community bankers have participated in various activities to expand homeownership for several years. During the past three years, community bankers and ICBA staff have spent an extra day working on local Habitat builds in the cities they were visiting during ICBA's national convention.

Earlier this year, ICBA and Habitat for Humanity International established a formal national alliance to enhance the local efforts of community banks in expanding affordable homeownership opportunities for low-income families, wherever the need is greatest. In addition to assisting various home-site construction events, the ICBA-Habitat alliance will also help raise donations at the national level to support the construction of affordable housing.

ICBA represents the largest constituency of community banks in the nation, with members serving many of the same neighborhoods as the 1,684 Habitat for Humanity affiliates.

"ICBA believes strongly in affordable housing for people of all means," said Dale Leighty, chairman of ICBA.

"Like our member banks, ICBA staff is dedicated to giving back to the community. Working with Habitat for Humanity is a rewarding way to do just that," said Camden R. Fine, ICBA president and CEO.