2020 Cornerstone & LiFE Award Winners

Strong Banks. Stronger Communities.

Texas Bankers Foundation honors 12 banks with Cornerstone and LiFE Awards

Last month, the Texas Bankers Foundation, the philanthropic arm of the Texas Bankers Association, presented the annual Cornerstone and Leaders in Financial Education (LiFE) awards to eight banks at a luncheon during the Texas Bankers Association’s 136th Annual Convention held at the Hilton Austin Downtown.

For the past 19 years, the Texas Bankers Foundation has recognized excellence in community engagement with the Cornerstone Awards. Over the years, award winners have been recognized for helping low- to moderate-income families, deserving students with financial difficulties, economic development initiatives, community celebrations and more.

Also, because providing financial capability is such an important part of the industry’s community involvement, the Foundation recognizes these efforts through the Leaders in Financial Education Awards.

Cornerstone Winners

Amarillo National Bank

 Amarillo National Bank was honored for its ANB A-Team program. The A-Team, the bank’s community volunteer group, is made up of employees who are willing to get involved on at least three occasions each year. Through the program, these bankers helped with administrative work, blood drives and outdoor events such as the Our Colors Run Together 5K benefiting the Harrington Cancer and Health Foundation. In 2020, the A-Team helped with food distribution through the Eastridge Mission Center and Snack Pak 4 Kids and helped to deliver groceries and meals to low-to-moderate income families who had tested positive for COVID-19. As the families worked to recover, the A-Team continued to deliver groceries to those who had lost their jobs or were unable to work due to quarantine. Today, the team currently boasts 172 employees.

FirstCapital Bank of Texas, N.A., Midland

FirstCapital Bank of Texas was honored for its Supporting our Communities in Times of Crisis project. During the COVID-19 pandemic, the bank worked tirelessly to provide support to its customers in every way possible. From processing loans through the SBA Paycheck Protection Program to providing support to small businesses and frontline healthcare workers, FirstCapital Bank of Texas made its communities a priority. The bank processed a total of 1,801 loans in its six markets and on numerous occasions assisted local restaurants with take-out orders for team meals and first responders. In addition, FirstCapital Bank of Texas held a special drive-thru version of their annual Christmas with Bonham event, offering children experiences with Santa, Mrs. Claus and other Christmas characters for a true holiday affair.

First National Bank Texas, Killeen

First National Bank Texas was honored for its Power of Change campaign, an initiative implemented to raise funds to support the growing demand community food banks were facing during the COVID-19 pandemic. The community bank saw an opportunity to increase the financial impact of its fundraising campaign and pledged to match up to $40,000 in community-raised donations. In addition, First National Bank Texas employees volunteered their time at various food banks such as Brazos Valley Food Bank, South Plains Food Bank, Harvest Regional Food Bank and many more. In total, the Power of Change campaign donated a total of $166,476.14 to 40 food banks across the communities in which they serve.  

Mineola Community Bank, S.S.B.

 Mineola Community Bank was honored for its Small Town Strong project. The bank worked with local EDCs and First National Bank of Winnsboro to create a reinvestment fund that allowed independently owned small businesses in East Texas to apply for financial assistance during the COVID-19 pandemic. Mineola Community Bank contributed $88,823 toward the fund and through various additional donations, Small Town Strong operated on $146,543.00. The project funded 98 local businesses that applied for financial assistance totaling over $86,000 — all of which are open to date. The program also donated funds to various community organizations such as Food Pantry, Lindale Christmas Helpers, Historic Select Theater, City of Grand Saline/City Park, Salvation Army, Winnsboro Volunteer Fire Department, The Back Pack Ministry and the Winnsboro Communities Foundation.

LiFE Winners

Comerica Bank, Dallas

Comerica Bank was recognized for its Comerica Business $ense Bootcamp program. During the COVID-19 pandemic, it was clear early on that minority- and women-owned small businesses and entrepreneurs, as well as underserved communities, were disproportionately affected and in response, the bank launched a virtual format of its bootcamp program in collaboration with various community partners. The program offered free and/or low-priced financial literacy workshops that were designated to provide financial education resources and technical assistance to small businesses and entrepreneurs while helping them scale and sustain the pandemic. Topics included marketing/branding, legal matters and bank relations/funding. In 2020, Comerica hosted more than 110 instructional bootcamps for small businesses in all of its markets, serving 1,250 small businesses.

Texas Security Bank, Dallas

Texas Security Bank was recognized for its Texas Security Bank Education Program. The TSB Academy, an executive leadership program, helps local business owners develop the basic skills they need to run and grow their businesses. Participants learn foundational, strategic and functional principles from industry experts in 18 classes designed specifically to help business owners run better businesses. In addition, Texas Security Bank also offers a free monthly educational seminar called the Business Speaker Series and BOLD Speaker Series 2.0. These executive education presentations bring together a diverse mix of business leaders and experts together to discuss the topics that concern entrepreneurs most. In total, the bank had 53 TSB Academy graduates and in 2020 alone, the Business and BOLD Speaker Series had 1,629 attendees.

Apply for 2022 awards

We know every Texas bank has community service projects and consumer education programs that are making a difference in their communities today. The Texas Bankers Foundation wants to honor the best of these with a Cornerstone or LiFE Award in 2022. Submission deadline is Feb. 28, 2022.

For more information, please contact Jocelyn Carby at [email protected] or 512-472-8388.

First National Bank Texas, Killeen

First National Bank Texas was recognized for its Virtual Financial Literacy program. With many communities affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, the bank helped its employees deliver virtual financial literacy classes to meet the community’s financial health needs. The bank met with different institutions and age groups to build trust and enable meaningful discussions that build financial confidence. First National Bank Texas held virtual presentations with various partner organizations such as Goodwill, Tarrant County Community College, Fort Hood and the Killeen Independent School District, to name a few. The bank also held a special SBA Payment Protection Program informational session with the Central Texas Workforce to discuss the outcomes of the program and raise awareness for local businesses to use the program to meet their financial needs.

Woodforest National Bank, The Woodlands

Woodforest National Bank was recognized for its Woodforest Foundry’s Entrepreneurship 4 All program. Last year, the bank turned its immersive onsite experience into a 100% virtual format in less than 60 days. From the safety and comfort of their home offices, “wantrepreneurs” and small businesses connected with Woodforest bankers to conceptualize and test new business ideas. Woodforest bankers practiced Woodforest Foundry rapid development concepts by quickly pivoting and building an online community of peers who acted as mentors to support, share, test and challenge their business ideas. Participants were also able to leverage a new way of accessing support, resources and financial education for entrepreneurs and small businesses. As of 2019, Woodforest has demonstrated its commitment to financial literacy for Texans through Woodforest Foundry by hosting 16 Entrepreneurship 4 All events, including six virtual event sessions. 

Biz2X ad