(The below press release is from Reading Cooperative Bank. Reading Cooperative Bank has two branches in Wilmington.)
READING, MA – Reading Cooperative Bank President and CEO, Julieann Thurlow, attended the 2015 American Bankers Association (ABA) Government Relations Summit from March 23-25 in Washington, DC. Each year more than a thousand bankers gather to speak to Congress and regulators in a unified voice to advocate for the changes hometown banks need to better serve their customers. This year, the Summit, which is the industry’s largest annual advocacy event, drew more than 1,100 participants from across the country and featured visits to Capitol Hill where bankers met with legislators and others to discuss policy priorities.
Prior to meeting with legislators, the ABA honored 12 of its members during the Summit for “going above and beyond” in advocating for the banking industry. Reading Cooperative’s Thurlow was among this year’s “Excellence in Advocacy” recipients. The award’s presenter remarked that, “Julieann’s commitment to mutuality, community banking and ABA is well known and is evidenced by her participation in several different councils and virtually every major meeting and conference. But it’s her grassroots leadership that is most inspiring,” further noting that she, “Once single-handedly ensured that ABA had a successful membership outreach event in New England by making phone calls, sending emails and encouraging her banking colleagues to attend.” Her efforts resulted in not only in bringing bankers together, but in new membership, as well.
During the conference, Thurlow had an opportunity to make a presentation to 250 fellow bankers about Reading Cooperative’s new brand, highlighting how important recognizing its cooperative status has become to the Bank and to its owners.
While many bankers met with their local congressmen, Thurlow joined a delegation led by ABA Chairman-elect, Dan Blanton, which met with U.S. Treasury Secretary, Jack Lew, to discuss the need for regulatory relief and the importance of reviving bank start-ups. Blanton, CEO of Georgia Bank & Trust, Augusta, GA, reminded Summit attendees that, “Building personal relationships with our lawmakers is a key to continuing our tradition of engagement,” as he encouraged them to host senators and representatives at least once a year in their banks.
Julieann Thurlow is a tireless advocate for community banks, and a firm believer in the benefit that a local bank provides to the community by way of jobs, loans and philanthropy. She is proud of Reading Cooperative Bank’s legacy as a cooperative bank, and recently oversaw the successful effort to make it harder to ever convert the Bank’s status from being a mutually owned company to a publicly traded one.
To learn more about Reading Cooperative Bank and Julieann Thurlow visit readingcoop.com.