Community Banks: Clearing a Pathway to the American Dream
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Community Banks: Clearing a Pathway to the American Dream

by Jen Novotny | May 02, 2016
Tim Purman, First National Bank

A letter from President and CEO, Tim Purman

About this time every year Americans embark on spring cleaning. That includes clearing away dust bunnies from lamp shades and base boards, determining home improvement projects, and generally getting our financial affairs in order. After all, we just passed tax day!

Enter community banks, a patchwork of locally owned and operated financial institutions located throughout small towns, suburbia and urban markets nationwide. Through recessions and economic booms alike, community banks have funded 90 percent of agricultural loans and more than half of small business loans.

We just finished celebrating Community Banking Month — something we do every April for the entire month, and I’m proud to count First National Bank among the more than 6,000 such institutions that have embarked on a 250-year tradition of relationship banking. At community banks, loans aren’t driven by the amount of fees and income they will bring the bank, but by the specific needs of our customer base and what’s in their best interests.

Local, community banking — the kind we provide at First National Bank — is built on the foundation of a lifelong partnership, where the interests of all parties are valued. And our bond is nurtured through a lifetime of service — whether volunteering at a school fundraiser or spearheading a revitalization of downtown Main Street.

Throughout the years we’ve empowered countless individuals to build financial security, whether that’s buying a home, funding education, or investing for their golden years. 

We’ve also empowered the economic growth of the community through smart financial investments in projects that make a significant impact. 

As locally based financial providers serving the people we see at PTA meetings and Little League baseball games, community bankers are accountable to our customers. It’s fundamental to our business structure and the key to our longevity. After all, we have been in business for 109 years!

Is there any wonder then that community banks channel most of their loans to their depositors’ neighborhoods helping to keep local communities vibrant and growing? Is it surprising that, as residents of Washington County and tax-paying citizens and business owners, we support the local infrastructure, making it a better place for all who live or work here?

I want to thank our existing customers for their patronage and urge those who we hope to count as future customers to consider the benefits of banking locally:

  • Personal Service — 66 percent of Americans want a more personal relationship with their financial institution.
  • Hometown Support — $68 out of every $100 spent at locally-owned businesses stays in the community.
  • Trusted Advisor — Community banks are the lender of choice for small businesses, above large banks, credit unions and nonbank lenders.
  • Local Decisions — Community banks consider character, family history and discretionary spending when making loan decisions.

Stop by First National Bank in Hartford, Richfield or Slinger today to discuss your financial situation and learn how a community bank can empower you to realize your financial dreams — and contribute to a more vibrant and sustainable economy in your community.