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Raritan State Bank Announces 2010 Scholarship Winners

Raritan State Bank announces the winners of its local scholarship essay contest. It is part of a program sponsored by Community Banks of Illinois, to increase public awareness of locally owned banks and their contributions to the community.

The winners from West Central High School class of 2010 are:

Andrew Postle, Luci Lox, and Mallory Nelson.

They will each receive a check for $200.00 at their school awards program. Art Kane, President, said, "We congratulate the winners and their teacher, Mr. Whitaker. for his assistance."

Community Banking: Community Benefit

by Mallory Nelson

I drive on the same roads everyday. On my route I drive by my community bank. The bank is something I am grateful to have in my community for many reasons.

Unlike a corporate bank, my community bank is full of hometown hospitality from people who know me and care about my banking needs.

My community bank takes pride in its community by taking care of its people and providing them support. I would encourage people everywhere to take advantage of their community banks.

Because of their community involvement, personable bankers and laid back environment, community banking is the best choice for me.

There are two basic types of banks, corporate banks and community banks. Both banks offer the same types of services.

They offer checking and saving accounts. Both are members of the FDIC. They also offer a variety of loans and ATM services.

The difference in these banks is how they offer their services and deal with customers. But the main and most influential difference when choosing which bank to use are the two banking philosophies.

The philosophy of the corporate bank focuses on the best interest of the bank is solely the best interest of the bank.

The community banking philosophy is, "The best interest of the bank is the best interest of the community," and vice versa.

Corporate banks are one of the largest industries in the United States. They have branches all over the nation which makes them easily and accessible and convenient.

But many people don't take the time to investigate the way these banks work. Each corporate bank is run by one head office.

The head office makes all the banking decisions. This means that decisions made on a loan request (or other financial services) aren't made locally. Corporate banks deal with so many people that recognition is nearly impossible.

Within a corporate banking system you exist not as a person, but as an account number.

The biggest problem with corporate banks is that even though the community members rely on the bank, the bank doesn't necessarily rely on the community.

If the bank isn't doing well they can just close and rely on other branches of that corporation. But when the bank closes it hurts the community.

I personally would want to do business with a bank that will help my community, one that cares about my community, and a bank I can rely on.

A bank I can rely on is my community bank. The most important thing about my community bank is their philosophy, "The best interest of the bank is the best interest of the community," and vice versa.

When I go to my bank I see the same people working there that are involved in my community.

That is something I think is very valuable to both the community bankers and members. The bankers know me, my family, and they understand if we need a loan or financial help with something.

The bank decisions are made locally and it comforts me to know the people who know and care about my situation are the ones who decide if I get financial services.

Most importantly, I love banking with people I know at a bank that benefits my community.

The main way to evaluate a business is by their philosophy and business goals.

The community banking philosophy defiantly convinces me that they are the best type of bank to use because they are an important part of my community.

I prefer a bank that is friendly and personable, and offers an enjoyable banking experience. These preferences eliminate the corporate bank and leave me with the perfect solution, the community banking business.

Because of their community involvement, personable bankers, and laid back environment, community banking is the best choice for me.

Personality Banks Best

by Luci Lox

How many banks do you know that have employees that you know personally?

At my bank, everyone knows me, my parents, and my grandparents. If I have questions, they can give me a direct answer about what I need.

I absolutely love the bank I go to. They are very courteous there and help me with whatever I would need help with.

When I go to my bank to deposit checks and such, the employees know me enough to ask about my basketball team.

They ask how we are doing and if we won last night's game. They then proceed to ask how my parents are.

They know my parents and my grandparents. I can answer, "Oh, mom's fine, she's doing good."

When my grandpa was in the hospital, they made a point to wish him good luck in his recovery. I like how personable they are.

Sometimes I need help balancing my checkbook. The first time I did it, one of the ladies I know in the bank helped me do it. I had just opened the account and had no clue how to do anything.

The lady, however, didn't mind helping me. She talked me through it and helped me get it straightened out.

They wouldn't have had time to help me at a larger bank. I would have been on my own that day when I needed to write checks and buy things. My mom wasn't home to help me, so what was I to do?

Every time I go into the bank, I am always greeted warmly with, "How are you today?" The people in the bank are always polite. They are so eager to help you with your problems. They never frown and talk to you in a dull voice. The employees are always upbeat and well-mannered.

I like it when people that work with the public that are nice to the people they are working with. Particularly in a banking situation, where one needs help most of the time, because the employee is our only lifeline with banking problems.

Banking is something to be taken seriously. I think it is important to know the people working there so the transactions go smoothly. I like how I can walk into my bank and have everyone know me. I like how everyone can help me. I especially like how the employees are forever smiling.

Nothing annoys me more than people being rude to their customers.

When it comes to my banking, personality banks best.

Bank and Trust

by Andrew Postle

In rural Illinois the local bank is very important to the community. Many citizens rely on the bank for loans, checking accounts, saving accounts, and many other services. With all the services offered and the friendly service there is much to like about my community bank.

The friendly service and their philosophy on banking is what I like most about my community bank.

When I go to my community bank to make a transaction, I know that the process is going to be quick and easy.

The employees are what make these transactions so easy. They are people I know, whether I attend church with them, they graduated high school with my parents, or they live down the street.

When I walk into the bank I am greeted by name and the teller knows what I want to do. This makes my visit to the bank quick and enjoyable.

Not only are the tellers citizens but the people behind the scenes, such as the president and board members, are people known throughout the community.

Unlike corporate banks, where their headquarters could be located clear across the country, the decisions of the community bank are made by someone who lives in the community. So the decisions they make are with the community in mind. They make decisions based on more than just a credit score.

What's best for the bank is best for the community. That is my community bank's philosophy.

When I put money into the bank I know its going to go back into the community not clear across the country.

The bank is quick to jump in and help a family in need or to help fund a school function.

An example of this is when our school decided to reward students who met or exceeded state standards on the PSAE.

They needed money and the local banks stepped right in and gathered up enough money to make the trip possible.

The community is very important to the bank and contributions made to education help the community and in the long run, help the bank.

Community banks offer all the services of a large bank but knowing that my money goes back into the community is what puts them over the top.

I know that my well being is just as important to the bank as their well being.

My community bank is very important to the local economy, and I like knowing that putting money into my bank not only helps the bank but also my community.

The employees know me and I know them, which makes banking much easier.

I know that my community bank is a bank I can trust.