As part of its 125th Anniversary celebration, WBA is digging deep into its archives to share a variety of historic gems. In this particular case, we’ve created a timeline of significant events related to Wisconsin’s banking industry that occurred between 1951 and 1960.

Wisconsin banks, recognizing women's increasing financial clout, begin organizing women's finance forums. "The forums are restricted to women that they will feel free to ask whatever questions bother them, without fear of a masculine frown," notes one sponsor, the Waukesha State Bank. 

More than 440 banks participate in WBA's "Know Your Bank" educational public relations campaign. 

Catherine B. Cleary
, trust officer of the First Wisconsin Trust Company, is named U.S. Treasurer; Cleary, an ardent equal-opportunity advocate, had worked in Wisconsin banking since 1947. The first television appearance of a WBA president (Arthur J. Quinn of Cumberland) is broadcast in February on the WTMJ-TV Milwaukee program "Wisconsin Forum." 

Banks nationwide embark on a building boom; 1,262 banks plan to expand or build new buildings. Wisconsin banks sell $124 million in savings bonds, a peacetime record. 

WBA members form the Wisconsin Development Credit Corporation to help small manufacturers finance expansion; 48 banks extend more than $213,000 through it. A special WBA research committee urges the legislature to end tax disparities between banks and other financial institutions. Check forgeries skyrocket; WBA distributes nine mailings to help bankers spot forgers and bogus checks. 

WBA begins a study resulting in the consolidation of the offices in Madison and Milwaukee. Marine Bank forms the first holding company under the Bank Holding Company Act of 1956. 

WBA headquarters move to 122 W. Washington Avenue in Madison. George Forster, former Des Moines city manager, becomes WBA's first executive director. 

A record 1,146 attend the School of Banking. Natalie Scherf, 42-year employee of the State Bank of Withee, becomes one of the first women bank presidents. 

Historical events compiled from "Good as Gold - A History of Banking in Wisconsin," Copyright © 1992 by Wisconsin Bankers Association.