Academic journal article ABA Banking Journal

Community Development Works

Academic journal article ABA Banking Journal

Community Development Works

Article excerpt

TWO YEARS AGO ABA RECOGNIZED several lenders for their outstanding community development initiatives by presenting them with Action Awards during a conference in Baltimore, co-sponsored by the ABA and the Comptroller's Office.

MC Bank and Trust Company of Morgan City, La., was the recipient of the ABA/OCC Community Projects Award for its "Hometown Spirit Campaign." This ongoing program involves a comprehensive advertising, public relations, sales and marketing campaign to increase retail trade in Morgan City, a small town in coastal south central Louisiana. With the title "We Have the Hometown Spirit," the campaign succeeded in instilling community pride, customer loyalty, and increased employee and community involvement.

"What happened surpassed everyone's expectations," says Larry Callais, president and CEO. "The whole community became, and still is, involved in spreading the hometown spirit."

Another ABA Action Award winner was Park State Bank in Duluth, Minn. Park State received the ABA's Main Street Award for its "Designated Investment Fund," a banking project where customers earmark the use of their deposits strictly for local investments in socially responsible private and public projects. Developed through a partnership with a Duluth community advisory group, the project uses local dollars to support local businesses. The fund has several million dollars in deposits and uses the deposits to make loans to revitalize the local community.

Heritage Community Bank, located in Chicago's Southland region, has been in the community development business for more than a decade. Heritage created a Regional Redevelopment Corporation in the 1990s to help counter rapid disinvestment and property abandonment in the area, explains Heritage's president, Carrie Broughton-Irving. …

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