CORVALLIS – Citizens Bank has announced the winners of this year’s Citizens Bank Community Bank Week Scholarship. Five outstanding local high school seniors have each been awarded $1,000 to support their respective college educations. All applicants participated in a hosted visit with a local Citizens Bank Branch and the winners were selected based on their essays describing what they learned about community banks and their benefit to local economies. Below are this year’s scholarship awardees:
- Spencer Chase, Silverton High School
- Rebecca Prassas, Lake Oswego High School
- Anya Remsburg, Oregon City High School
- Anjana Sriram, Crescent Valley High School
- Braeden Torres, Willamette High School
This is the sixth consecutive year Citizens Bank has offered its Community Bank Week Scholarship and has awarded a total of $28,000 to Oregon high school seniors. “Citizens Bank is extremely proud to offer the Community Bank Week Scholarship to these amazing students from our communities,” said Gordon Zimmerman, President & CEO. “Once again, the quality of the pool of applicants and their essays on community banking made selecting winners a challenging task. We feel honored to have helped so many young people in our communities learn more about community banking.”
22nd Annual Flower Basket Sale Raises $5,000 for the American Cancer Society
McMinnville – For the 22nd consecutive year, Citizens Bank has partnered with Country Garden Nursery to raise money for the American Cancer Society with beautiful hanging flower baskets. Citizens Bank sold 500 Baskets, raising a total of $5,000. This year the weather was a little wet and cold, but with the colorful flowers and smiling faces it felt like the sun was shining bright.
Albany 14th Ave. Branch Raises Money for the ABC House
CORVALLIS – Throughout the month of April, our Albany 14th Ave. Branch sold “I Support ABC House” cards and collected loose change as a fundraiser for the ABC House. With the help of our wonderful customers, the Branch was able to raise over $200.
ABC House is the Children's Advocacy Center serving Benton & Linn Counties. They provide high-quality child abuse assessments and support services for local children and youth when there are concerns of abuse and neglect.
October 15, 2021
Citizens Bank Sponsors Coffee Cart to Boost Hospital Worker Morale
CORVALLIS – As this summer came to a close, hospitals throughout Oregon began experiencing their greatest surge of hospitalized COVID-19 patients since the pandemic’s inception. Frontline healthcare workers were dealing with an environment that was exhausting, stressful, and after nearly two years felt never ending. As the caseloads increased, healthcare workers’ morale was getting extremely low.
After a presentation from Doug Boysen, President/CEO of Samaritan Health Services, on the effects this latest surge was having on medical workers in Benton, Linn, and Lincoln Counties, Citizens Bank’s Board of Directors asked what they could do to help. That’s when Citizen Bank partnered with Good Grounds Coffee.
“We used the coffee truck to welcome back our employees at our Corvallis Main Branch when we reopened our lobbies to the public in June,” said Gordon Zimmerman, President/CEO of Citizens Bank. “When we were discussing a morale booster for the hospital, this was a natural choice.”
The original plan was to have the cart onsite at Good Samaritan Regional Medical Center one day per week for the month of September from 6 to 10 a.m. and 6 to 10 p.m. to provide access for employees working any shift at the hospital. Citizens Bank would cover the cost of all drinks and food to say thank you and show appreciation.
Susan Arredondo, Owner of Good Grounds Coffee was excited for the opportunity to give back. “Being in Healthcare Management as my full-time job, I understand the toll that COVID has taken on morale for everyone involved,” said Arredondo. “This incredible group of people needs to be reminded that they have not been forgotten for all the sacrifice and hard work they are doing.”
From the first day, the reaction from frontline workers has been overwhelmingly positive. “Community members continuing to reach out, like Citizens Bank, provides the fuel for healthcare workers to keep doing their good work,” said Boysen. “The free coffee and pastries are appreciated not only because everyone loves coffee and pastries, but because it shows that their work is still recognized and valued.”
Wanting to extend the schedule beyond the original plan, Citizens Bank reached out to other community leaders and businesses to ask if they would be interested in joining to support the hospital staff. The response was immediate, and the schedule expanded into October. Even more companies and organizations have reached out directly to Susan at Good Grounds. The cart is now scheduled at the hospital into November.
According to Susan, the ripple effect has not only given back to healthcare workers, but it has meant a great deal to her partner businesses. “We provide pastries that are baked by small business owner, Annie Zentz of Crumble and Glaze. The exposure of her delicious baked goods and the increase in her volume has been a great blessing for her business.”
Not only did Citizens Bank provide the coffee and pastries, but they and other sponsors have had leadership onsite to personally thank the workers. “You really need to spend a few hours out there with these hospital workers and see what they are going through for our communities,” said Zimmerman. “It’s overwhelming but also rewarding. The small, simple gesture of saying ‘thank you’, providing a token of appreciation via this coffee cart really lifts their morale and their spirits. They feel the appreciation and are happy to know the community is behind them.”
March 12, 2021
Citizens Bank $15,000 Challenge Grant Helps Support the Corvallis Public Schools Foundation COVID-19 Relief Fund
CORVALLIS – At the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, Citizens Bank announced a $15,000 challenge grant to the Corvallis Public Schools Foundation (CPSF) to aid emergency fundraising efforts. According to CPSF, nearly 1,900 students in the Corvallis School District are enrolled in the free lunch program with 500 additional students qualifying for the reduced-lunch program and many students also lack access to adequate technology for remote schooling.
Thanks to the support from our community and the power of matching funds, CPSF quickly surpassed the initial $30,000 fundraising goal and set a new target of $50,000. They then surpassed $50,000 and increased the goal to $100,000. By summer, CPSF had raised $115,000 for their COVID-19 Relief Fund.
"Citizens Bank helped our organization build momentum and take action in a pivotal moment,” said Liv Gifford, CPSF Executive Director. “Because of their challenge grant, we mobilized an emergency fundraising effort that exceeded our greatest expectations and made an enormous difference in the community."
Donations paid for food (grocery gift cards, shelf-stable items, and local produce), hygiene items, laundry cards, school supplies, internet access, and emergency financial assistance for families on the verge of losing their housing. Funds also supported a CPSF program called Care and Connect, which paid a team of educators to spend the summer months contacting students who had become disconnected from school in the spring.
“In response to the challenges posed by the pandemic, Citizens Bank wanted to find a way to support our communities,” said Gordon Zimmerman, Citizens Bank President and CEO. “We’re proud to work with CPSF and partner with the generous Corvallis community to help the children impacted by COVID-19 school closures.”
Since schools were shuttered in March 2020, all supplies have been delivered directly to students' doorsteps, typically within 24 hours of a referral or request. The school district's ability to provide wrap-around support for families, thanks to private donations through the Corvallis Public Schools Foundation, has built trust and helped students access an education in these challenging times
Citizens Bank Approves $126.5 Million in PPP Loans for 1,029 Local Businesses
Under the program’s guidelines, banks have 10 days to close and fund a loan once it is approved by the SBA, but according to Gordon Zimmerman, President and CEO, Citizens Bank’s dedicated staff was able to complete the process for many customers in just a few short days.
“Our staff has worked around the clock to go above and beyond for our customers and communities,” said Zimmerman. “We have closed months of normal loan volume in just days.”
While the PPP is a government sponsored program, funding these loans is the responsibility of Citizens Bank. Local deposits from the Bank’s customers are providing critical support to our friends and neighbors throughout our communities during this Pandemic. This is true community banking at its best.
“Our communities deserve our best and I assure you Citizens Bank and its employees will continue this meaningful work until program funds are exhausted,” stated Zimmerman. “We remain committed to disbursing these funds within the guidelines of the program - fairly, equitably and timely. We will continue these efforts until every single loan is funded and the program is complete.”
“Don Zinter from Citizens Bank, along with my CPA and I worked a lot of hours over the weekend of April 17th to get the applications completed and submitted correctly. The game kept changing, the rules were vague, and we needed the money. We got our application submitted early and without the support of Don and Citizens Bank, we would not have received the money.”
CEO, Columbia Roofing & Sheet Metal
"Jon Johnson and Citizens Bank were beyond great. I was late on a submission for round 1 and Jon was great at following up and making sure I got in to round 2 consideration. He even walked paperwork from the bank to the store for me to sign. They were just amazing."Linda Hays
Owner, Hopscotch Toys