Peoples State Bank announced that Casey Jensen has been promoted to the position of information security officer. Jensen has been a member of the bank’s IT team for nine years.

“Casey’s dedication to Peoples and our customers is the perfect fit for this newly created position,” said Robert McPherson, Peoples State Bank vice president, risk management. “Her experience lends itself to this role, which is critical in keeping our information security programs ready to protect our customers’ digital assets safe.”

In addition to her time at Peoples, Jensen has another nine years of IT experience at other companies. In this new role, she’ll work closely with Peoples’ IT staff but will have other responsibilities, including training, business continuity, and disaster recovery programs.

“I’m excited to build upon the bank’s successful information security platforms and processes to provide the necessary education and strategies to strengthen security for the bank and our customers,” said Jensen. “Peoples has been at the forefront of adopting information security best practices for years, and this new role will strengthen the bank’s resolve to keep our customer’s information secure.”

Jensen — a native of Medford — has been a Peoples employee since 2013. She lives in Merrill with her family. She spends her free time with family and friends.

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Waukesha State Bank has awarded 20, $1,000 scholarships to incoming freshmen at Carroll University.

“We are proud to have supported Carroll University scholarships for the last 26 years,” said Ty Taylor, president and CEO of Waukesha State Bank. “Our annual scholarship commitment demonstrates our pledge to education and our local students.”

Waukesha State Bank began their Carroll University scholars’ program in 1996 to support Carroll students, from Waukesha County, in their freshmen year. Scholarships are awarded based on extracurricular activities, community service, and job experience. To date, the program has impacted over 480 Carroll students.

“We are grateful for Waukesha State Bank’s continued commitment to Carroll University and our students,” said Dawn Scott, vice president of enrollment for Carroll University. “Through the years, many of the local students supported by Waukesha State Bank scholarships have stayed in the area and continued their impact through work, family and volunteerism.”

The twenty 2022–23 Waukesha State Bank scholarship recipients are Angel Calderon of Waukesha, Paige Clementi of Waukesha, Grace Fisher of Dousman, Audrey Flanders of New Berlin, Natalie Gricius of Oconomowoc, Marcela Hahn of Sussex, Alicia Holzem of Sussex, Emily Knott of New Berlin, Emily Krawczyk of Muskego, Alma Lopez of Waukesha, Paige McLaughlin of Hartland, Emily Motz of New Berlin, Abigail Olstinske of New Berlin, Chloe Raethke of Harland, Cora Riffle of Waukesha, Kaylee Shaffer-Joers of Waukesha, Sarah Stamn of Brookfield, Layla Tank of Pewaukee, Tess Thompson of New Berlin, and Ethan Weber of Waukesha.

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Prevail Bank is pleased to announce that Julie Ann Siegler, with 20 years of banking experience, joined the Prevail Bank – Wisconsin Rapids team as a mortgage loan originator.

“We are excited to welcome Julie to the Prevail Team,” said Brent Arndt, senior vice president mortgage manager for Prevail Bank. “Her life-long residency of Wisconsin Rapids, 15 years of home lending and mortgage processing experience, and her strong sense of commitment to her customers and community make her a perfect fit.”

“I am thrilled to represent Prevail Bank,” said Siegler. “Prevail understands the word ‘hometown’ and continuingly looks for ways to help our communities grow. ‘Here to lend a hand,’ isn’t just a tagline; they live it and breathe it. I intend to do the same.”

Siegler has served on many Boards over the years, and is an active member and secretary of the Chamber Leads Group. In her spare time, Siegler and long-time significant other, Jason, enjoy traveling (Door County, Arizona, and the Gulf Shores of Alabama in particular); hiking; chasing waterfalls; watching the Packers, Badgers and Brewers; and spending time with family, friends, and their yellow lab, Bella. Daughter, Katelyn, is also an active member of the Wisconsin Rapids community, working full-time at the local VA Clinic, while attending college.

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Rose Oswald PoelsBy Rose Oswald Poels

As a banker, ensuring the financial success and prosperity of your customers and community members is at the heart of what you do, day in and day out. You and your team give back in so many ways, yet we know that we have work left to do. A recent FINRA study showed that:  

  • 37% of Wisconsinites do not have emergency funds,  
  • 27% have used non-bank borrowing methods in the past five years, and  
  • 40% find it somewhat or very difficult to cover expenses and pay bills.  

The Wisconsin Bankers Foundation (WBF) exists because bankers like you care deeply about promoting financial literacy and capability in our state. Please see the Year in Review for an overview of how the Foundation is making an impact.  

Today, on Giving Tuesday, the WBF staff and I invite you to consider a donation to the Foundation. Because of WBF’s public charity status, donations may be tax deductible. Our goal is to raise $70,000 for the 2022–2023 fiscal year, and there are three easy ways for you to join in: 

  • Send a check to the Wisconsin Bankers Foundation, 4721 S. Biltmore Lane, Madison, WI 53718, 
  • Donate online at, and/or 
  • Use the pledge form to donate an item for our silent auction, which will be held online as well as in person at the WBA Bank Executives Conference, February 8–10, 2023. 

Your contribution will enable us to continue to: 

  • Provide Reading Raises Interest Kits to teach the importance of saving money at a young age, 
  • Award scholarships to high school seniors and college students with interests in the banking industry, 
  • Provide comprehensive and comparative data on the banking industry through, 
  • Honor bankers and industry leaders for their engagement with financial literacy, and 
  • Offer grants to support outstanding nonprofit financial education programs across the state. 

Thank you in advance for considering adding your name to the list of our 2022–2023 supporters. Our collective involvement makes a meaningful difference in the financial wellness of our communities. 


Wisconsin Bankers Foundation logo


The Wisconsin Bankers Foundation (WBF) is a Wisconsin non-stock corporation organized for charitable and educational purposes. WBF is dedicated to promoting financial literacy and financial responsibility to the public and to broadening consumer empowerment in the financial services industry, primarily through research and education. FEIN 46-3791061

Van Pelt with board and Oswald Poels

Tom Van Pelt is pictured with members of the Citizens State Bank Board as he accepts his award from WBA President and CEO Rose Oswald Poels

Tom Van Pelt, president and CEO of Citizens State Bank of Hudson, has been recognized with a Wisconsin Bankers Association (WBA) Lifetime Service Award for his 43 years in banking. Rose Oswald Poels, president and CEO of WBA, presented the award at the bank on November 22, 2022 to honor Van Pelt for his contributions to the banking industry over the span of his career, including his service on the WBA Board of Directors. Van Pelt plans to retire at the end of this year.

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Rose Oswald PoelsBy Rose Oswald Poels

With a long-held tradition of promoting financial literacy and capability to individuals throughout the state, the Wisconsin Bankers Foundation (WBF) — our Association’s nonprofit arm — looks forward each year to recognizing the outstanding efforts of those who continue to make strides in educating members of our communities.

As such, during the annual breakfast program at WBA’s LEAD360 on November 17, several bankers received WBF’s financial literacy awards. This year, 24 bankers and 11 banks were recognized for their remarkable efforts during the 2021–2022 fiscal year.

As the Chair of our Foundation and advocate for Wisconsin bankers and our communities, I am incredibly pleased to honor these individuals and banks for their outstanding achievements and dedication to financial education. I am also very excited to note that this year Wisconsin bankers reached over 10,400 members of their communities!

For the second year in a row, Sue Krause of Fox Valley Savings Bank in Fond du Lac was awarded the Foundation’s most prestigious individual award — the Financial Literacy Banker of the Year Award. This award is presented to the banker who reports the highest number of financial education presentations. This year, Sue was able to do a remarkable 150 presentations in her local community! Thank you, Sue, for your continued commitment to the prosperity of your neighbors.

The Financial Literacy Banker Award, presented to the banker who reports the second-highest number of financial education presentations, was awarded to Joshua Pauling of Farmers State Bank in Waupaca. Josh’s incredible 35 presentations have left a lasting impact on individuals young and old.

Both Sue and Josh, in addition to Jenean Friedl and Paige Hyer of Royal Bank in Elroy and Pam Blattner of Bank of Sun Prairie, were presented with WBF’s Certificate of Excellence Award for achieving 20+ presentations during the fiscal year. Thank you and congratulations to these five dedicated bankers for their incredible accomplishment.

The Foundation also recognized those bankers who give between five and 19 presentations in the fiscal year with a Certificate of Recognition. Thank you to Christine Buckman, Hilari Henke, Deann LaValley, Erik Thompson, and Dawn Whipple of First Bank of Baldwin; Emily Bennig, Rachael Danielson, Katie Dillon, and Tami Miller of First National Bank of River Falls; Kaylee Fellom and Matteson Mahlum of Union State Bank in West Salem; Katlein Detloff of Ladysmith Federal Savings & Loan; Dena Hineline and Pamela Sanderson of Bank of Sun Prairie; Karri Oelke of National Exchange Bank & Trust in Fond du Lac; and Beth Durow, Lisa Hower, Alyssa Manley, and Alicia Schneider of The Stephenson National Bank & Trust in Marinette.

Additionally, congratulations to the 11 banks that were awarded the WBF Excellence in Financial Education Award for their bank-wide dedication to financial literacy. These banks include: Bank of Sun Prairie; Farmers State Bank of Waupaca; First Bank of Baldwin; First National Bank of River Falls; Ladysmith Federal Savings and Loan Association; National Exchange Bank & Trust, Fond du Lac; Premier Community Bank, Marion; PremierBank, Fort Atkinson; The Stephenson National Bank & Trust, Marinette; Union State Bank, West Salem, and Waumandee State Bank.

Thank you, once again, to all the bankers who continue to commit their time and efforts toward improving the financial literacy and capability of individuals throughout our state. If your bank has taken part in any financial education events since June 1, 2022, please do not forget to highlight these efforts at I also encourage those that have not already to highlight their achievements for the Governor’s Financial Literacy Awards, which are due December 2.

Bank First is pleased to welcome Bridget Tally-Brill and Brenda Haese to the team.

Bridget Tally-Brill joined Bank First as vice president – retail banking with over 19 years of experience in the mortgage industry. Tally-Brill will be responsible for developing new and enhancing existing retail banking relationships in the bank’s Cedarburg market.

Her background as a realtor and involvement in the Sheboygan County Home Builders Association will continue to be instrumental in her new role at Bank First. Tally-Brill is passionate about educating buyers and guiding them through the home financing process whether they decide to build, purchase, or refinance their home.

Tally-Brill earned her master’s degree in leadership and organizational development from Lakeland College as well as a bachelor’s degree in international studies with minors in both business and Spanish from UW–Platteville. She currently serves on the Membership Committee of the Sheboygan County Home Builders Association where she also served as past president, and has been involved in the Spring Tour of Homes / Parade of Homes and Home Expo Committees for several years. Tally-Brill is a member of the Lake Shore Realtor Association, formerly known as the Sheboygan County Realtor Association, where she previously served as secretary and board member.

She lives in the Waldo/Hingham area with her husband and has two grown children. Tally-Brill enjoys traveling, crafting, reading, and spending time on the water at Lake Camelot.

Brenda Haese joined Bank First as human resources officer with over 15 years of experience in human resources. In her new role, Haese will be responsible for the recruitment of new bank employees as well the administration of employee benefits and the organization of individual development plans. Her dedication and strong emphasis on helping employees reach their goals aligns with the bank’s mission to encourage all employees on their path to personal and career growth.

Haese graduated with a bachelor’s degree in interdisciplinary studies with an emphasis on business administration from UW–Green Bay. She serves as president of the Lakeshore Area Human Resources Association and lives in Cato with her husband and two children. Haese enjoys spending time on the lake up north, golfing, and traveling.

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Starting in late November, Prevail Bank will match the donations received at each of its nine branches, for the benefit of a different, local nonprofit, up to $1,000.

“We recognize the importance local organizations have and the resources they provide for the less fortunate,” said Nathan Quinnell, president of Prevail Bank. “We hope the communities we serve will rally with us and make this holiday season a happier one for those in need. I’d really like to write nine checks totaling $9,000.”

Anyone can contribute; a person does not need to be a bank customer to participate. Collection starts November 21 and ends December 12, 2022, with one exception. Prevail Bank Marshfield will be collecting funds from November 28 – December 16.

The benefitting organizations are:

  • Baraboo – Sauk County Children’s Giving Tree
  • Eau Claire County Giving Trees
  • Marshfield – PDC’s Orenda Center, a domestic abuse shelter
  • Medford – the Medford Area Public Schools CARES Model that provides mental health and social emotional counseling free of charge
  • Owen – the Owen-Withee Food Pantry. [Worthy of note: The Owen-Withee Lions Club will also match the donations Prevail Bank collects, up to $1,000, for the benefit of the pantry.]
  • Phillips – Health Alliance of Price County
  • Stevens Point – United Way of Portage County
  • Wausau – The Hagar House, a home for single mothers in crisis
  • Wisconsin Rapids – Park Place Adult Day Services
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The November 2022 WBA Compliance Journal is now available. In this edition, WBA Legal summarizes FinCEN’s final beneficial ownership information reporting rule and provides a highlight of recently released CFPB guidance documents. The “Regulatory Spotlight” section provides a summary of rules, proposals, and notices issued by federal agencies, and the “Compliance Notes” section reports on other important compliance-related updates for bankers. For Wisconsin lawyers needing to report Continued Legal Education (CLE) credits, the November edition also includes a listing of 2021 and 2022 WBA webinars and programs which received CLE credit from the Wisconsin Board of Bar Examiners. This month’s edition also includes a special section, “Insights of a Wisconsin Compliance Officer” which includes thoughts from Bev Downing, VP-Compliance, Royal Bank. Bev recently retired after 39 years in the industry.

WBA’s Advocacy Officer program offers leadership opportunity

By Lorenzo Cruz

Leadership in your bank is about more than networking. As many bank leaders can attest, having a wide range of experience in many different areas of the bank is critical in ensuring a broad understanding of the industry as a whole.

As our industry continues to evolve, one significant area of focus for leaders continues to be government involvement. As members of the Wisconsin Bankers Association (WBA), banks have an opportunity to designate Advocacy Officers, or volunteers who assist in coordinating community advocacy efforts, to work alongside the WBA Government Relations Team on regulatory, legislative, and political activities that impact our industry each day.

In working with WBA staff; fellow bankers; state, local, and federal levels of government; and other state or national trade groups, WBA Advocacy Officers continue to help make life easier for bankers and accomplish the goals of the banking industry.

The typical background for this position usually includes an interest in public policy, a strong understanding of the banking industry (compliance, credit, external relations, etc.), the ability to speak for the bank regarding matters of regulatory or public policy, and a flexible schedule.

But what does an Advocacy Officer (AO) actually do and what are the rewards and advantages for the banker? Here are five opportunities for every Advocacy Officer:

1. Receive relevant, up-to-date information.

Every week, AOs receive a report detailing emerging topics, upcoming regulation, key legislative items, and inside information that will help you be at the front end of important business, banking, and economic issues in Wisconsin. In addition to weekly reports, AOs who are subscribed to the Wisconsin Banker Daily will receive timely updates on the events impacting the industry.

2. Testify before the Wisconsin Legislature or communicate with key elected officials.

This unique leadership opportunity allows AOs to speak directly to legislators and other community leaders about how the banking industry works and how legislation will impact the banking industry. Working directly with WBA staff, an AO is prepared and reinforced with information to help the banker put their best foot forward. AOs email or call elected officials about banking items to help provide information, meet in Madison at WBA’s annual Capitol Day, and host elected officials at the bank as part of “Take Your Legislator to Work Days.”

3. Recognition before your bank leadership and peers.

WBA recognizes AOs in publications and directly with bank leadership for their efforts to help the banking industry. AOs also have the opportunity to attend events that allow an individual to connect with other bankers and WBA leadership. AOs are given the contact information for every Advocacy Officer peer in Wisconsin.

4. Elect pro-banking officials.

Once per year, the AO helps coordinate fundraising activities at the bank for Wisbankpac (PAC) political action committee or the Alliance of Bankers for Wisconsin (ABW) conduit to help support pro-banking candidates. AOs are provided information by WBA in an Advocacy Toolkit that helps with all aspects of the event. WBA is not “D” nor “R,” but “B” for Banking!

5. Meet with leaders from other industries and represent WBA.

AOs regularly attend local and statewide events to represent Wisconsin’s banking industry. These events create an entirely new network of individuals who are leaders in other industries, such as healthcare, accounting, manufacturing, and real estate.

To learn more about the Advocacy Officer position, please visit or contact me.