This month’s Independent Banker magazine highlights stories of steadfast community support
Washington, D.C. (Sept. 1, 2022) — The Independent Community Bankers of America (ICBA) today announced the winners of its 2022 National Community Bank Service Awards, which celebrate the outstanding service and creative volunteer efforts of the nation’s community banks. Stories are featured in the September issue of ICBA Independent Banker.
“ICBA is proud to recognize the extraordinary contributions of our 2022 National Community Bank Service Award winners, which showcase the unmatched role community banks serve in ensuring the continued vitality of their local communities,” ICBA President and CEO Rebeca Romero Rainey said. “Their dedication to community banking principles and unique understanding of the diverse needs of their communities are what sets them apart and creates a lasting impact on those they’re called to serve.”
The 2022 ICBA National Community Bank Service Award winners are:
Exceptional Community Bank Service Award
American Savings Bank in Oahu, Hawaii.
American Savings Bank’s Kahiau Giving Campaign and volunteer efforts in underserved communities earned the $9.2 billion-asset bank recognition for its generous and creative support. Each year, ASB invites 1,100 of its employees to donate and matches their contributions up to $150,000.
Since its inception, the program has raised more than $1.5 million and boasts a 97 percent employee participation rate. Staff are also encouraged to volunteer through its Seeds of Service program, with employees giving more than 100,000 volunteer hours on projects that include landscaping, painting, meal preparation and teaching financial literacy at schools.
The Hawaiian term “kahiau,” which means to give generously without expecting anything in return, is a perfect metaphor for how Asset American Savings Bank approaches community outreach, President and CEO Ann Teranishi said. “As much as we are grateful for the opportunities to support our community in various ways,” says Teranishi, “as an organization we gain just as much in return.”
Emerging Community Bank Service Award
First Community Bank of the Heartland in Clinton, Ky.
First Community Bank of the Heartland’s Make a Difference Campaign, based on the mindset that volunteerism should not be limited to special occasions, made it a standout this year for recognition.
Every month is marked by a calendar of initiatives influenced by what is important to FCB associates. In January, for instance, the bank delivers meals to law enforcement and emergency agencies. In August, they hand out treats and hand-written notes of appreciation to teachers. In November, they host a food drive. Last year, FCB logged nearly 1,658 volunteer and is on track to be 30 percent ahead of that number for 2022.
"We initially had the mission of serving child service centers by gathering donations of necessities for children entering foster homes," said President and CEO Bruce Kimbell of the $370 million-asset bank. "Since then, our Make a Difference program has evolved into much more. First Community Bank of the Heartland is absolutely committed to making our communities better, and we are so grateful to be a community bank.”
- Columbia Bank in Fair Lawn, N.J., for its outsized community outreach via its Team Columbia volunteer initiative, in which employees logged 3,500 hours to support 110 organizations.
- Ulster Savings Bank in Kingston, N.Y., for its economic support during the pandemic. The bank provided $34.4 million in financial assistance and helped save more than 4,700 local jobs.
“Community banks are community continuators,” ICBA Chairman Brad Bolton said. “The efforts of ICBA’s 2022 National Community Bank Service Award winners highlights what differentiates community banks and showcases why they are leaders in financial services—not only do they provide the best products and services to their customers, but they do so while making their communities a better place for all who call it home.”
More than 100 community banks and employees have been recognized by the ICBA National Community Bank Service Awards since the program’s inception in 2002. Bank technology services provider FIS, of Jacksonville, Fla., sponsored this year’s program.
The Independent Community Bankers of America® creates and promotes an environment where community banks flourish. ICBA is dedicated exclusively to representing the interests of the community banking industry and its membership through effective advocacy, best-in-class education, and high-quality products and services.
With nearly 50,000 locations nationwide, community banks constitute roughly 99 percent of all banks, employ nearly 700,000 Americans and are the only physical banking presence in one in three U.S. counties. Holding nearly $5.8 trillion in assets, over $4.9 trillion in deposits, and more than $3.5 trillion in loans to consumers, small businesses and the agricultural community, community banks channel local deposits into the Main Streets and neighborhoods they serve, spurring job creation, fostering innovation and fueling their customers’ dreams in communities throughout America. For more information, visit ICBA’s website at www.icba.org.