Intercity State Bank congratulates Julie Jacobson (pictured), assistant vice president – home loan specialist, on her retirement following 20 years with the bank. Intercity also congratulates Diane Poulos, vice president on her retirement follow 41 years with the bank.
On January 11, two Farmers & Merchants State Bank, Waterloo, employees — Laurie Frey, vice president – operations and Pamela Davison, universal banker 2 — were honored with the WBA’s Lifetime Service Award in recognition of their years of service to the banking industry. Frey and Davison dedicated 46 years and 44 years, respectively, to Farmers & Merchants State Bank.
Congratulations to Sue Ronayne who retired from National Exchange Bank & Trust on January 12 after 17 years of service.
Since joining the bank in 2005, Ronayne has worked in downtown Fond du Lac where she played an integral role behind the scenes for loans.
Ronayne grew up in Arlington Heights, Ill. where she went to Rolling Meadows High School. She went on to earn a certificate in special ed. from the community college in Palatine, Ill. Today, Ronayne resides in Fond du Lac with her husband, Jim.
Cornerstone Community Bank held their annual food and cash drive at the Menomonee Falls location during the month of December to benefit the Falls Area Food Pantry. A total of $1,410.00 was raised, of which Cornerstone matched donations up to $500, and several boxes of food were also collected.
Jeannine Matuszak, interim director of the Falls Area Food Pantry, said, “I am so honored to receive this very generous donation for our pantry to be able to purchase much needed food for our clients.”
“We were happy to be a collection point for the Food Pantry,” added Becki Schimpf, marketing coordinator at Cornerstone Community Bank. “With the growing cost of food prices, it is rewarding to help fill a gap where needed. We are grateful for the support of our staff and the community for bringing in food items and/or donating money to our holiday cause. ”
The Pantry’s mission is to gather and distribute nutritious food to those with acute or chronic need who live in the greater Menomonee Falls area. It also strives to raise awareness of hunger and provide volunteer opportunities for the community.
Bank Five Nine has donated $10,000 to the Potawatomi Area Council-Boy Scouts of America to purchase 1,000+ fishing poles for local scouts. The poles are given to new scouts as they join the organization’s character-building program. The program focuses on servant leadership, outdoor adventures, and so much more.
“We are pleased to support scouting and what it stands for with our contribution. As a local community bank these are important investments in our citizens of the future.” said Tim Schneider, Bank Five Nine CEO and president.
The Potawatomi Area Council’s goal is to inspire youth in the Waukesha area to reach greater heights. They help youth from ages 5–20 achieve self-confidence, integrity, and ethical awareness while improving their personal fitness and skills. Out of 250 BSA Councils in the U.S., the Potawatomi Council ranks 3rd in the country for regional participation.
Craig Schiefelbein, president of the Potawatomi Area Council said, “Bank Five Nine is a quintessential community bank. We feel that America needs scouting like never before, so Bank Five Nine’s help is so much appreciated.”
The Wisconsin Bankers Association is pleased to report that 35 institutions have been recognized with WBA’s BIGG (Bankers Involved in Grassroots and Government) for for their total involvement in advocacy in 2022. BIGG is the highest level of recognition for advocacy by our member banks.
To achieve BIGG status, institutions must meet at least five (5) of these seven criteria:
- Have named an Advocacy Officer
- Obtain Gold Triangle award
- Contribute to WBA’s issue advocacy fund
- Have at least one bank employee attend WBA Capitol Day
- Have a member of the bank participate in a Federal delegation meeting or go on a D.C. regulatory trip
- Have the bank hold a Take Your Legislator to Work Day
- Other (e.g. testify on a bill, host a fundraiser, analyze legislation, etc.)
2022 BIGG Recipients
American National Bank Fox Cities, Associated Bank, Bank Five Nine, Bank of Brodhead, Bank of Sun Prairie, Bank of Wisconsin Dells, Bankers’ Bank, Bristol Morgan Bank, Capitol Bank, Charter Bank, Citizens First Bank, East Wisconsin Savings Bank, First Business Bank, Fortifi Bank, Greenwoods State Bank, Horicon Bank, Ladysmith Federal Savings and Loan Association, MidWest One Bank, Mound City Bank, National Exchange Bank & Trust, Nicolet National Bank, North Shore Bank, Oostburg State Bank, The Park Bank, The Peoples Community Bank, Premier Community Bank, Royal Bank, Security Financial Bank, State Bank of Cross Plains, The Equitable Bank, The Stephenson National Bank & Trust, Town Bank N.A., Unity Bank, Waldo State Bank, and Wolf River Community Bank.
We are happy to report that 46 institutions have now achieved Gold Triangle status for political fundraising in 2022. Gold Triangle is the highest level of fundraising recognition for banks and achieved through bank employee or director contributions to the Alliance of Bankers for Wisconsin (ABW) political conduit or Wisbankpac, or corporate contributions to WBA’s issue advocacy fund. ABW and Wisbankpac funds are utilized as part of our overall effort to support pro-banking candidates, regardless of whether they have an R or D next to their name. Issue advocacy dollars are used to in several capacities to shape public opinion on pro-banking, pro-business issues.
Demand on our political action funds is as high as it has ever been, and we are battling on numerous fronts in Madison. If you have not already done so, please consider contributing to WBA political action funds. You may contribute via credit card here.
2022 Gold Triangle Club Members
American National Bank Fox Cities, Associated Bank, Bank Five Nine, Bank of Brodhead, Bank of Sun Prairie, Bank of Wisconsin Dells, Bankers’ Bank, Bluff View Bank, Bristol Morgan Bank, Capitol Bank, Charter Bank, Citizens Bank, Citizens First Bank, Citizens State Bank of Loyal, East Wisconsin Savings Bank, The Equitable Bank, First Citizens State Bank, First National Community Bank, Fortifi Bank, Forward Bank, Greenwoods State Bank, Horicon Bank, Mound City Bank, National Bank of Commerce, National Exchange Bank & Trust, Nicolet National Bank, North Shore Bank, Northwestern Bank, Oak Bank, Old National Bank, Oostburg State Bank, Park Bank, The Peoples Community Bank, Peoples State Bank, Premier Community Bank, Security State Bank, Security Financial Bank, State Bank of Cross Plains, State Bank Financial, The Stephenson National Bank & Trust, Superior Savings Bank, Town Bank N.A., Unity Bank, Waldo State Bank, Wisconsin Bankers Association, and Wolf River Community Bank.
Gold Triangle Club Contribution Levels by Bank Asset Size
|Bank Assets||Total Banker Contributions|
|$750 M – $1 Billion||$5,000|
THANK YOU to all the banks, Gold Triangle or not, that have contributed to our advocacy efforts.
If you have questions or would like to make a contribution, please contact WBA’s Lorenzo Cruz, vice president – government relations.
North Shore Bank has announced the kick-off of its centennial anniversary celebrating customers, employees, and the community. All year long, the community bank will be showcasing appreciation to the people and organizations that have supported North Shore Bank in its growth and successes, while welcoming the next century of progress that’s ahead for the bank.
North Shore Bank was founded in 1923 by a group of teachers in the back of a hardware store in Shorewood, Wis. Since then, its growth has been exponential, opening branches across southeastern Wisconsin, as well as entering the greater Green Bay market through an acquisition in the late 1980s. Today, the bank, headquartered in Brookfield, Wis., has 43 branches across eastern Wisconsin and northern Illinois.
“Reaching 100 years of service is significant and certainly something to celebrate. We’ve grown and prospered in good economic times and even through challenging economies over the last century. It’s that strength, stability, and trust along with our dedicated employees, loyal customers, and community partners that has us ready to seize every opportunity during the next 100 years” said Jay McKenna, president of North Shore Bank. “This year is focused on saying thank you to our customers, employees, and communities; paying tribute to our achievements, and enthusiastically looking to the future. Cheers to 100 years!”
To commemorate North Shore Bank’s milestone, its signature Bank on Kindness® program will be center stage with many surprise and delight events to showcase the value of kindness and lend support to community members and partner organizations.
Throughout the year, North Shore Bank customers will be randomly surprised with $100 cash prizes, giveaways, and even “celebrity” video tellers. Employees are receiving specialty perks, including additional paid time off to volunteer in their communities, appreciation activities, and surprises.
Associated Bank has announced plans for the redevelopment of its existing branch in Whitefish Bay, located at 430 E. Silver Spring Drive. The updated full-service branch will share occupancy with Colectivo Coffee and feature flexible indoor and outdoor seating to serve residents of and visitors to Whitefish Bay.
The redesigned location is expected to open in Spring 2024 with construction likely beginning June 2023.
“Associated Bank is committed to the Whitefish Bay community and looks forward to offering customers and the community an updated branch design on Silver Spring Drive,” said John Halechko, director of branch banking, Associated Bank. “The new mixed-use building is designed with the community in mind. We wanted to create a welcoming and family-friendly space that will feature unique community-oriented programming, as well. Colectivo Coffee is the perfect partner to accomplish that.”
“Colectivo is excited to join the Whitefish Bay community,” said Scott Isabella, president of Colectivo Coffee Roasters. “We have been searching for a project that enhances and celebrates the community. The Associated Bank redevelopment is exactly that.”
The redesigned building will boast two levels of space for Associated Bank and Colectivo Coffee. Associated’s first level will occupy 2,700 square feet and offer two drive up banking lanes and a walk-up ATM on the outside of the building. Meanwhile, Colectivo Coffee will occupy 1,500 of the first level and offer convenient mobile pick-up spaces, as well as café space on level two of the building.
Customers will be notified and receive additional information this spring.
Bank of Sun Prairie’s Christopher Cox has been named senior vice president, chief business banking officer. Cox has enjoyed a successful career in commercial banking for more than 20 years in central and southern Wisconsin where he has specialized in commercial lending and managing extensive portfolios across widely respected community banks. He now oversees the business lending department of lenders and portfolio managers after serving under recently retired Chief Lending Officer Ron Blawusch.
Bank of Sun Prairie’s commercial lending team is working throughout central and southern Wisconsin and under Cox’s leadership, the area continues to grow recently adding a junior business banker and currently recruiting a vice president, business banker to round out the growing practice.
“Chris is the exact right person at the exact right time to step into this critical executive leadership role for Bank of Sun Prairie,” exclaimed Bank of Sun Prairie’s President and CEO Jimmy Kauffman. “He brings the perfect combination of leadership skills and a deep understanding of commercial lending and complex portfolio management — and most importantly, our customers and Chris’ team respect and admire his technical expertise and warm personality, a winning combination.”
Cox earned a bachelor’s degree in economics from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, an MBA in accounting from University of Phoenix, and is a graduate of the Graduate School of Banking. Cox has served as a community volunteer in board and governance capacities, serving nonprofits and organizations focused on economic development. He lives in Fall River with his family.