By Jeff McDaniels
President and CEO, Farmers Bank and Trust Company
On August 28th, 2017 I was passed the gavel and proudly accepted the President’s role of the Bluegrass Community Bankers Association. Succeeding Ms. Jodi Stacy of the Bank of the Mountains in West Liberty will be no easy task, but with the support of Jodi, the remainder of our Board and the BCBA staff, I will do my very best to continue the positive momentum that Jodi summarizes in her BCBA Annual Convention Summary.
I suspect like most everyone reading this, I am very proud to consider myself part of a local, independent bank, one that even goes so far as to promote itself as being Community Driven. We take that saying seriously, feeling a high sense of responsibility that goes along with having local directors, local management, and local staff that not only work in our community, but also consider it home. BCBA is made up of banks just like ours, a primary motivating factor that originally attracted our bank and me to the organization.
Taking that another step, BCBA’s affiliation with the Independent Community Bankers of America only further solidified that attraction. Especially on the heels of the not-so-distant financial crisis that helped forge an increased desire for banks like ours to no longer be grouped among all banks, most notably those best described by the “too-big-to-fail” mantra. ICBA, with the support of associations like BCBA, has worked very hard to make that distinction meaningful in our nation’s capital. While other factors remain at play, that distinction alone largely settles it for me.
As Jodi notes in her convention summary, BCBA is getting a makeover as we look ahead to 2018. We have teamed up with a Kentucky-based marketing firm known as the Cre8tive Group to bring you more consistent industry information via our new website (bluegrassbankers.com), e-newsletters, social media, and print. We also plan to be out on the road some as well. For those of you that are already members, just to visit and get your ideas on how we can be of better service. For those of you not yet members, a chance to tell you our story and to answer any questions that you may have.
In closing, let me also be one of the first to give you an early invite to our 2018 BCBA Annual Convention in Bowling Green, Kentucky next August 26th-28th. While Lexington has been good to us and we expect to return there in future years, we are just as excited to bring our event to another part of our state. Even though the location is changing, it is our full intention to offer the same educational and networking opportunities that it has in the past. Please mark your calendar, we would love to see you there!