Academic journal article ABA Banking Journal

Advocacy Starts Locally: Jay Jenkins' Recipe for Advocacy Success: Start Early, Engage Locally and Keep It Bipartisan

Academic journal article ABA Banking Journal

Advocacy Starts Locally: Jay Jenkins' Recipe for Advocacy Success: Start Early, Engage Locally and Keep It Bipartisan

Article excerpt

IN HIS LOCAL market of Carlsbad, New Mexico, banker engagement in public affairs and community life is "a job requirement," says Jay Jenkins, president and CEO of Carlsbad National Bank, a $357 miilion-asset bank tucked in New Mexico's far southeastern corner in a town with less than 30,000 residents.

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"If we're not successful economically here in Carlsbad, I may not have a job," he explains.

That involvement spans everything from the chamber of commerce to the Little League to civic events and political activities. And local participation is something he requires of his bank officers, just as he was involved during the nearly two decades he's been with the bank. In addition to his bank role, Jenkins serves in leadership roles with the Carlsbad economic development agency and with a local nonprofit serving people with special needs.

That involvement pays off when it comes to building valuable relationships with policymakers. For example, Jenkins recently got pulled into a meeting with the mayor of Carlsbad and Rep. Steve Pearce (R), a House Financial Services Committee member. The mayor wanted to have Jenkins' perspective as a banker in the room. "Being involved locally helped with growing those relationships on a broader scale," he says.

Jenkins emphasizes reaching out to lawmakers' field staff. …

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