What is a Community Bank?
A community bank is any state or federally chartered bank or thrift with its charter located in the State of Arkansas. It is locally owned and locally controlled. These institutions either serve a single county , contiguous counties or counties statewide and make the majority of their loans in the trade areas from which their deposits are gathered. They prescribe to the philosophy of independent community banking as evidenced by the their actions and support.
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In 1980 a small group of like-minded independent bankers banded together to charter the Arkansas Independent Bankers Association. These pioneers in Arkansas banking represented some 65 independent community banks throughout our State. In 1993 the name of the association was officially changed to the Arkansas Community Bankers Association. May 1995 the membership voted to allow Arkansas based thrifts to be members of ACB. Today ACB represents 182 community banks and thrifts in Arkansas.
- ACB's created its niche in the bank products and services arena. Today, Community Bank Services, Inc. endorses over 25 bank product and service providers offering hundreds of products and services to our member banks. The annual volume purchased by the participating banks exceeds $40 million.
- The Arkansas Bankers' Bank was chartered in 1990. The purpose was to create and provide an alternative source for correspondent banking services for independent community banks. Organization of the bankers' bank was a project undertaken by ACB in 1989. It was the sixteenth bankers' bank to be organized in the country and the first to over subscribe its stock offering.
- ACB provides a strong voice for legislative issues on the state and national levels with superior lobbying representation. H. Lacy Landers is the ACB Director of Legislative Affairs. Lacy is a 36 year veteran of the Arkansas General Assembly having served as Speaker of the House and Vice Chairman of the House Insurance and Commerce committee.
- ACB was the first community bank association to develop a computer based bulletin board service for its members. Arkansas Community Bank Network provided information from regulatory, legal, accounting; service providers; and other professional sources. This network was used as the model for the creation of networks for several other state associations as well as the Independent Community Bankers of America's "community bank exchange" network. Arkansas Community Bank Network was the forerunner to today's ACB website www.acbonline.org.
- ACB was the first community bank trade association in the country to acquire a life insurance company as an affiliate serving as a product delivery mechanism for the benefit of member banks. Through the sale of stock, Community Bank Life is majority owned and controlled by the membership. Community Bank Life and Health produces over $60,000,000 annually in credit and disability insurance protection for customers of community banks.
Community Bank Services, Inc.
Community Bank Insurance, Inc.
Organized in 1988 as a delivery mechanism, Community Bank Services provides hundreds of bank products and services to the membership. By utilizing the aggregate purchasing power of the participating banks, we are able to negotiate significant discounts on quality products and feature rich services.
In 1990 the ACB Board of Directors authorized the organization of Community Bank Insurance, Inc. as a general insurance agency subsidiary. Employing the same concept used with bank services, Community Bank Insurance offers a complete line of insurance products to the membership including: group health, life and dental; fidelity bond; directors and officers liability; property and casualty; annuities; estate planning services; stocks; bonds; and mutual funds. CBI also actively assists members in creating retail insurance agencies, licensing and training bank insurance agents and providing a full array of insurance products.
Community Bank Life Insurance Company, Inc.
The acquisition of this company in 1996, and subsequent stock offering allowing member banks to take an equity position, places the ACB family in the unique position of being the provider as well as the underwriter of credit insurance products designed exclusively for use by community banks.
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