President's Message - January/February 2015
Happy New Year! We hope that you had a successful 2014 and that the IBA played a small part in your success. We can assure you that you played a major role in ours! Thanks to the support of our members, associates, partners and preferred vendors, the IBA had another great year.
The edition of the Illinois Banker magazine features the year’s highlights and accomplishments. Meanwhile, here is brief look at just some of those items.
The Association is financially sound, and we continue to build reserves. We welcomed 15 new member banks and thrifts and 20 new associates to our valued family of members. Thousands of Illinois bankers experienced the highest rated education programs in the industry, with many of our conferences seeing record attendance. Also, in partnership with Secure Banking Solutions, we rolled out a new online certification program to help employees develop critical skills to protect against information security threats. This timely program is garnering a lot of interest among IT professionals and security officers!
Nearly 500 bankers are taking advantage of our round-the-clock compliance services, especially our website at GoToIBA.com. Among hundreds of topic pages and Q&As and numerous other resources, we recently began adding sample forms and policies to our menu. No doubt the resources on our site will continue to expand!
Our government relations team successfully sought passage of several important new Illinois banking laws this year, while we led over 50 Illinois bankers to Washington, D.C., to lobby Congress and the regulators on critically important issues. Additionally, we announced a new Let’s Talk Banking Series to provide ready-made opportunities for bankers and legislators to connect. Watch for this popular new program to expand to various locations in the state throughout 2015.
The IBA also now manages a full-service insurance agency, exclusively for financial institutions. In addition to assisting you with your institution’s health insurance needs, we now are assisting bankers with D&O, bond, property and casualty, cyber liability, force placed insurance, workers compensation and other business coverages.
Lastly, we spoke on behalf of our industry to the media and other opinion leaders by fielding over 170 media calls and writing several letters to the editor on a host of important topics. We also continued our public relations campaign to set the record straight on the differences between banks and credit unions -– a campaign that will be ramped up again in early 2015.
You can count on the IBA Board of Directors and the staff to be laser focused in continuing to meet the critical needs of our members. As always, we encourage you to contact me or any member of our qualified staff with your comments, suggestions and questions.
On behalf of all of us at the Illinois Bankers Association, we wish you a prosperous, healthy and happy New Year!