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American Bankers Association honors Citizens Bank for community development efforts

Citizens Bank has received additional national recognition from the American Bankers Association (ABA) for its community development efforts in Batesville.

In an article that appears on its “America’s Banks” website, ABA identifies Citizens Bank as “A Bank That Kick Starts Change for an Entire Community.”

Citizens Bank was acknowledged for its Impact Loans & Grants Program, and for its role in assisting the Batesville Area Chamber of Commerce with the IMPACT Independence Strategic Community Plan. The Impact loans and grants have been credited for playing a critical role in the success of the revitalization of Historic Main Street Batesville. The Impact Independence program has helped guide increased economic development across Independence County.

“Citizens Bank has made a major difference for an entire community with the Impact Independence County programs,” ABA said in a release. “The initiative brought together residents and area leaders to identify ways to kick start the local economy and make other quality of life improvements. The success speaks for itself.”

Since it was established in 2016, the bank’s Impact Loans & Grants program has provided more than 50 loans and grants totaling $6.5 million. Loans are being made at very low-interest rates to finance renovation and improvement programs.

This latest recognition follows the 2018 Community Commitment Award for excellence in community and economic development, which the American Bankers Association presented to Citizens Bank and the Batesville Area Chamber of Commerce.

ABA says its America’s Banks campaign “features real stories and fresh data about banks’ efforts to support the people and places they serve. The website highlights the industry’s role in building careers, providing loans to individuals and small businesses and making a difference in their communities through philanthropy, investment, innovation, and personal service.”

“America’s banks only succeed when the communities they operate in do as well,” according to ABA. “That’s why in addition to providing loans and financial services, banks and the two million men and women who work for them are also deeply committed to volunteerism, community leadership, and philanthropy. From providing free financial education lessons to students of all ages to serving on boards of local nonprofits and supporting military families with special education and hiring programs, bankers routinely volunteer their time and talents to ensure community needs are met.”

Data released by ABA indicates that the 87 banks that are headquartered in Arkansas have 23,378 employees, a total annual payroll of $2 billion, 4.5 million customers, and $3.1 billion in small business loans outstanding.

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