The Community Bank Story

Minnesota Vikings Cornerback Captain Munnerlyn banks with a locally owned and operated financial institution. So does NFL Hall of Famer and former Washington Redskins player Darrell Green, who sits on the board for MainStreet Bank in Fairfax, Va.

These cornerback brethren share more than a love for America’s most watched sport. They’ve also found a home with their local community banks, which the players praise for their work in the community and personal relationships with customers.

“I’ve appreciated the strong relationship with MainStreet because they stand for everything that is right in community banking,” says Green, a founding shareholder of the bank. “They work with their customers through good times and hard times, and they don’t give up.”

“Our culture is about accountability,” explains John Poling, the president of Minnesota Lakes Bank, where Munnerlyn banks. “It’s about embracing change and … providing exceptional customer service.”

Both Green and Munnerlyn clearly see the benefits of relationship banking, which is what the community bank business model is all about.

But community banks don’t stop there. They also pack a powerful punch when it comes to small-business lending.

After all, community banks fund more than half of the nation’s small businesses. Not only that, but a recent Federal Reserve Bank study also found that community banks had the highest satisfaction scores among small-business lenders. According to the study, 75 percent of small businesses reported that they were satisfied with their overall experience with a community bank, compared with scores of 56 percent for credit unions and 51 percent for large banks.

This is further proof that that community banks make a huge difference in their communities and in the lives of their customers.

As ICBA Chairman Rebeca Romero Rainey said during her speech at the ICBA Community Banking LIVE® national convention last month, “Our work matters!”

Romero Rainey, a third-generation community banker and chairman and CEO of Centinel Bank of Taos, N.M., also highlighted why it’s important for community banks to tell their positive story and explain why their work matters.

“Tell your story; tell it to potential customers; tell it in your community; tell it to your lawmakers,” urged Romero Rainey.

ICBA is helping community bankers tell their story throughout ICBA Community Banking Month with a variety of custom resources, including a news release, op-ed and sample social media updates.

Whether it’s the story of helping a small business get started or a first-time homeowner live the American dream, ICBA is encouraging community bankers to get the message out. By making their voice heard by the news media, customers and local communities, community bankers can spread the word about the importance of community banking.

For more information and to get started, visit the ICBA Community Banking Month resource center today.

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