WELLINGTON, TX—The Independent Bankers Association of Texas (IBAT)—the largest state community banking association in the nation—recently honored Wellington State Bank with two Best of Community Banking (BOCB) Awards. It received a Silver Eagle award for its “Beans for Jeans” community service entry and a Silver Eagle award for its “Dragon Spirit Bank” financial literacy entry.
Beans for Jeans
In 2022, Wellington State Bank put a different spin on the annual canned food drive they held every year by rolling out their new campaign called “Beans for Jeans.”
For the entire month of November, if Wellington State Bank employees wanted to wear jeans for the day, they had to bring a can of beans (or other canned good or food item) for donation. To make it interesting, marketing recruited a team of “Jeans Police” – an individual at each branch that would keep an eye out for any violators wearing jeans without donating. If an employee was caught wearing jeans without donating, the employee donated $5 to “get out of jail” for the day. All money collected was also donated to each branch's food pantry of choice. The bank raised a record number of food items that was donated to fourteen food pantries across the state thanks to the efforts of Wellington State Bank employees and customers.
Dragon Spirit Bank
Dragon Spirit Bank was created in 1999 by First National Bank of Paducah (which later merged with Wellington State Bank) to help the local youth of Paducah ISD learn about banking and develop an understanding of the need to save. Originally, the Gifted and Talented Class acted as the tellers for this project to encourage financial careers, but with current scheduling and other conflicts, the bank elected to keep the project alive by sending two of its own tellers weekly to take the deposits.
The motto of Dragon Spirit Bank, which is proudly displayed on the bank’s teller station at the school, is “Learning to Save, Saving to Learn.” Wellington State Bank strives to teach the importance of financial literacy, even at a young age, and encourages students to use this knowledge as they get older. The bank discusses how to save money, teaches ways to save, gives examples of what money could be used for if they did save, and why it’s important. It also discusses basic knowledge about how bank accounts work. The students stay engaged and ask questions, and at the end of the year, they’re eager to keep up their savings habits through the summer.
2023 marks the 32nd year that IBAT has celebrated the outstanding accomplishments of Texas community banks with the BOCB Awards. Community banks, such as Wellington State Bank, play a critical role in their local communities. The Best of Community Banking competition is designed to honor local banks for their commitment to helping their customers, neighbors, employees and community. BOCB Awards recognize community banks throughout the state for their innovation, creativity and success in fulfilling a specific community or internal need. Each submission received a gold, silver or bronze eagle award in one of six categories: architectural design, bank culture, community service, financial literacy, marketing and innovation.
All BOCB gold, silver and bronze submissions can be viewed at www.ibat.org. For more information about Wellington State Bank’s submissions and the programs they highlight, please contact Vice President of Marketing & Human Resources Kelsey Goates at (254) 968-2265.
About Wellington State Bank
Wellington State Bank has proudly served its communities for over 100 years. Currently there are 14 branches in Texas including Bowie, Canadian, Canyon, Childress, Dalhart, Granbury, Littlefield, Lubbock, Memphis, Olton, Paducah, Stephenville, Wellington and Wheeler.
About the Independent Bankers Association of Texas
Formed in 1974, the Independent Bankers Association of Texas (IBAT) represents Texas community banks. The Austin-based group is the largest state community banking organization in the nation with membership comprised of almost 5,000 banks and branches in more than 700 Texas communities. Providing safe and responsible financial services to all Texans, IBAT member bank assets range in size from $28 million to $51 billion with combined assets statewide of $296 billion. IBAT member banks are committed to supporting and investing in their local communities.