Oct. 11 marks 125th an­niver­sary of VBA

The Progress-Index - - LOCAL - Con­trib­uted Re­port

RICH­MOND — Oct. 11, 2018 marks the 125th an­niver­sary of the Vir­ginia Bankers As­so­ci­a­tion, VBA.

In 1893, a group of bankers met in Rich­mond dur­ing a time of fi­nan­cial panic for Vir­ginia and the na­tion.

The bankers’ mis­sion was to com­bine the in­ter­ests of banks for har­mo­nious ac­tion and give as­sur­ance that in­ter­ests de­pen­dent upon bank­ing were in safe hands and the de­posits of the peo­ple were safe.

One hun­dred twen­ty­five years later, the VBA con­tin­ues to sup­port the eco­nomic growth and pros­per­ity of the Com­mon­wealth by pro­mot­ing a sta­ble bank­ing sys­tem to pro­tect the in­ter­ests of the cus­tomers and com­mu­ni­ties it serves.

The VBA rep­re­sents all Vir­ginia state and com­mer­cial banks, from the small­est to the largest, and pro­motes the is­sues and ac­tiv­i­ties that are of ut­most im­por­tance to main­tain­ing and strength­en­ing a vi­brant bank­ing in­dus­try and econ­omy in the Com­mon­wealth.

“The mis­sion of the VBA is to en­hance Vir­ginia bank­ing for the ben­e­fit of banks, their cus­tomers and their com­mu­ni­ties,” said Scott Har­vard, CEO & direc­tor of First Bank, Vir­ginia and the 2018-2019 chair­man of the VBA. “Through the VBA’s work and pro­gram­ming, banks are bet­ter pre­pared to serve their cus­tomers and can con­tinue to be the back­bone of the com­mu­ni­ties they serve.”

“I am proud of VBA’s work to rec­og­nize and ac­tively sup­port the bank­ing in­dus­try’s lead­ing role in the ar­eas of eco­nomic ed­u­ca­tion and fi­nan­cial lit­er­acy for Vir­ginia stu­dents,” said VBA Pres­i­dent and CEO Bruce White­hurst. “Through the VBA Ed­u­ca­tion Foun­da­tion, which is sup­ported by Vir­ginia banks, and its pro­grams, we dis­trib­uted more than $110,000 this year alone. Our VBA Bank Day Schol­ar­ship Pro­gram has dis­trib­uted $137,000 in col­lege schol­ar­ships to Vir­ginia high school se­niors since 2012, and we have con­trib­uted $472,000 to the Vir­ginia Coun­cil for Eco­nomic Ed­u­ca­tion’s Fund for Teach­ing Ex­cel­lence since 2009.”

At the time of VBA’s creation, banks serv­ing the Com­mon­wealth had ap­prox­i­mately $26 mil­lion in to­tal de­posits and 149 banks.

To­day, VBA’s 100 mem­ber banks have 8.9 mil­lion cus­tomers, 2,386 branches and of­fices, and $307.7 bil­lion in in­sured de­posits.

The Vir­ginia Gen­eral Assem­bly passed HJ 450 in March, com­mend­ing the VBA on this his­toric mile­stone. In the res­o­lu­tion, Speaker of the House Kirk Cox (R-Colo­nial Heights) ex­tended to the VBA the leg­is­la­ture’s “ad­mi­ra­tion for its legacy of in­valu­able ser­vice to the Com­mon­wealth and its cit­i­zens.”

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