Independent Banker

Rebeca Romero Rainey: Focusing on our communities

Independent Banker

Photo by Robert Severi. Unlike our credit union counterparts, we pay taxes, and those tax dollars are spent at home to ensure our communities grow. The more things change, the more they remain the same.

Rebeca Romero Rainey: You make an impact

Independent Banker

“From your focus on people to the good that you do, you make a lasting impact, and that’s what makes you uniquely who you are.”. When I consider what I love about community banking, I get a clear visual: overlapping concentric circles with one common center.

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Rebeca Romero Rainey: Leadership is about teamwork

Independent Banker

“Well-executed leadership is less about marching to your own beat and more about creating a well-choreographed team play.”. Remember that childhood game follow-the-leader where one person directed, and the others walked in line?

Rebeca Romero Rainey: Building hope for 2021

Independent Banker

“After a very challenging 2020, I encourage you and your loved ones to end the year strong and fill up with hope for what 2021 may bring.”

Realizing the Benefits of Automated Machine Learning

How are organizations using machine learning and artificial intelligence (AI) to derive business value? Renowned author and professor Tom Davenport explains the rise of automated machine learning, its benefits, and success stories from businesses that are already using it.

Rebeca Romero Rainey: A sense of connection

Independent Banker

“There’s an undeniable sense of connection among us, and I’ve seen how community banks have responded.”. What a different August this will be than in previous years.

Rebeca Romero Rainey: The power of our stories

Independent Banker

Our marketing efforts as community banks often center on the stories we tell, and they resonate because they unveil the beauty of our joint community experience. The art of storytelling began as a way to solidify cultural history and preserve details for future generations.

Rebeca Romero Rainey: Address customers’ hurdles

Independent Banker

“Just as we responded to the PPP loan curveball, so, too, have we been there to address the additional hurdles our customers face.”. When we flip our wall calendars to October, we’re regaled by images of pumpkins, ghosts and black cats. Halloween—the ultimate holiday.

Rebeca Romero Rainey: Let’s bring people together

Independent Banker

“With a heart led by compassion, let’s ask ourselves a question: Who do we want to be when we grow up?”. At times in our country, true independence has arisen from points of crisis—critical moments in time that require us to listen and reflect.

Rebeca Romero Rainey: A world of opportunity

Independent Banker

“Today’s technology environment opens the door to a world of opportunity for community bankers.”. Welcome to Independent Banker’s ICBA LIVE 2020 issue! It’s amazing that we’re already celebrating our first convention of a new decade. As a child, the concept of the year 2020 seemed so far-fetched.

The Best Sales Forecasting Models for Weathering Your Goals

Every sales forecasting model has a different strength and predictability method. It’s recommended to test out which one is best for your team. This way, you’ll be able to further enhance – and optimize – your newly-developed pipeline. Your future sales forecast? Sunny skies (and success) are just ahead!

Rebeca Romero Rainey: Cornerstones of the community

Independent Banker

“As the cornerstones of the community, community bankers offer a light in the darkness of hard times.”. September traditionally acts as “back to school” month, where, after the slower-paced dog days of summer, we settle back into our normal routines.

Rebeca Romero Rainey: Do today for tomorrow

Independent Banker

“As community bankers, making the next right choice today will ensure we have a strong, flourishing future.”. We have entered a challenging environment, to say the least.

Rebeca Romero Rainey: Building hope for 2021

Independent Banker

“After a very challenging 2020, I encourage you and your loved ones to end the year strong and fill up with hope for what 2021 may bring.”

Rebeca Romero Rainey: We make every day better

Independent Banker

“Community banks work hard to ensure that every day is just a little bit better than the last.”. As community bankers, we strive for excellence.

How to Choose an AI Vendor

This report explores why it is so challenging to choose an AI vendor and what you should consider as you seek a partner in AI.

Rebeca Romero Rainey: We resolve to support you

Independent Banker

“Our resolution is to continue to bring you the very best support for your prosperity, growth and success in the new year.”. As we enter a new year, we’re filled with a sense of anticipation for everything that will unfold in the coming 12 months.

Rebeca Romero Rainey: Tell your incredible story

Independent Banker

“You’ve got an incredible story to tell, and ICBA is honored to help you tell it.”. Community Banking Month holds a special place in my heart. It began early in my career at Centinel Bank of Taos. Every April, I would visit local elementary schools to speak about community banking.

Rebeca Romero Rainey: Connections are critical

Independent Banker

“A plethora of new digital payments offerings now must factor into business strategies.”. What does “the best” mean? It can be a tricky question, as “the best” of anything is usually subject to interpretation. What I think is the best restaurant may not fit your palate, and vice versa.

Rebeca Romero Rainey: You are the backbone of our nation’s financing

Independent Banker

“When our customers’ needs take center stage, we identify creative solutions to help them achieve their dreams.”. When I think about how the lending market has changed over the past decade, there is one consistent theme—community banks have been, and continue to be, the backbone of our nation’s financing. Despite regulatory hurdles and increased competition from nonbank providers, community banks thrive in both consumer and commercial lending.

B2B Pocket Playbook: End-to-End Guide to Sales Enablement

Sales enablement is the strategic process of providing sales teams with the content, guidance, and mentorship needed to engage targeted buyers. It’s all about equipping sales professionals with the tools they need to put their best-selling foot forward. And if sales teams want to continuously sell better -- and faster -- their sales enablement process must have a game-winning strategy. It's time for you to start selling smarter - and hitting your sales number - with the best B2B database in the market. Get started today.

Rebeca Romero Rainey: Community service is at our industry’s heart

Independent Banker

“Community service is a timeless tradition that’s core to every community bank.”. By Rebeca Romero Rainey, President and CEO, ICBA. As I work on this column, I’m in Santa Fe, preparing to speak at the Independent Community Bankers Association of New Mexico’s annual convention. I was chairman of this great organization 10 years ago, and the theme of that convention was “Independent Community Banks—A Timeless Tradition.”

Rebeca Romero Rainey: Embrace the opportunity

Independent Banker

“A plethora of new digital payments offerings now must factor into business strategies.”. As Winston Churchill said, “To improve is to change; to be perfect is to change often.” That sentiment rings true for digital payments. Today, community bankers hold a place at the digital payments table, both as drivers of change and as witnesses to the flurry of activity.

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Rebeca Romero Rainey: We flourish in times of change

Independent Banker

“When community bankers join their voices, they are a powerful force, taking the industry to new levels.”. We’re in a season of unprecedented industry change, particularly when we look at faster payments. In August, the Federal Reserve announced the launch of FedNow, a round-the-clock, real-time payments and settlement service. For the first time in more than 40 years, the Federal Reserve will be standing up a new payments system, the penultimate example of industry change.

Rebeca Romero Rainey: Take pride in the work we do

Independent Banker

“While community banks could certainly benefit from the tax advantages credit unions have, we flourish despite them.”. There’s something about September that inspires a focus on priorities. Maybe it’s a throwback to back-to-school, or perhaps I’m gearing up for the switch of seasons. But come September, I spend some time reflecting on where I stand against my goals and what still needs to be done.

MLOps 101: The Foundation for Your AI Strategy

Machine Learning Operations (MLOps) allows organizations to alleviate many of the issues on the path to AI with ROI by providing a technological backbone for managing the machine learning lifecycle through automation and scalability.

Rebeca Romero Rainey: See you at ICBA LIVE

Independent Banker

. “Tim Zimmerman embodies what it means to be a community banker.”. I’m looking forward to seeing you at ICBA LIVE 2019! We’ve been working hard to ensure this year’s convention is the best yet. Our theme is “Community Banks Turn Up the Volume,” and community bankers and our ICBA chairman Tim Zimmerman did just that over the past year.

Rebeca Romero Rainey: We stand the test of time

Independent Banker

“We stand the test of time as pillars of our communities.”. I recently attended an ICBA Services Network meeting where a group of us started reminiscing about the evolution of banking over the past few decades. We collectively wondered at how much has changed for the better. From new products and services to digital strategies and internal efficiencies, we’ve evolved our business to support our customers’ growing needs. Thankfully, we’re no longer filing checks and stuffing statements!

15 Minutes With—Les Leskovin

Independent Banker

Photo by Aggie Brooks. Les Leskoven. Senior Vice President and Senior Trust Officer. for the $521 Million-Asset. Community National Bank & Trust of Texas. in Corsicana, Texas. IB: Tell me about Corsicana. Where’s it located? Leskoven: We’re about 45 miles southeast of Dallas. We’re very centrally located on Interstate 45. It’s a town of about 25,000 people. Our county’s about 50,000. We have several large manufacturing facilities and distribution centers, due to its central location.

Rebeca Romero Rainey: Create opportunities for new leaders

Independent Banker

“Leadership lies not in the position you hold but in what you do with it.”. After college, I moved back to my hometown of Taos, N.M. I was driven by the goal of doing whatever I could do to make a difference in my community. At the young age of 22, I became the third generation of my family to take the helm as president of Centinel Bank of Taos. I was given a significant opportunity by the board and bank management—one I didn’t take lightly.

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Pressure Points: How to Ensure Your B2B Pipeline Passes Inspection

This eBook highlights best practices for developing a pipeline management process that helps sales leaders and their team C.L.O.S.E (you’ll see what we mean in this eBook) more revenue through data-driven prospecting, stage analysis, and subsequent sales enablement.

Analytical and Personable

Independent Banker

Jamey Smith Citizens Bank in Kilgore, Texas. Jamey Smith forges complete partnerships for successful commercial lending. By Judith Sears. As a successful commercial lending specialist for more than 30 years, Jamey Smith, Houston region CEO of Citizens Bank in Kilgore, Texas, has pursued a strategy of getting an in-depth understanding of potential customers and their businesses.

Rebeca Romero Rainey: The future is bright

Independent Banker

“The future is bright, and the opportunities for growth are endless.”. I had the opportunity to read this month’s cover story ahead of writing my column. I’m so glad that I did. I was blown away by the incredible community banks that are featured, and I have a feeling you’ll feel the same way! Even after such a phenomenal ICBA LIVE and the ICBA Capital Summit, which may be happening as you read this, I can still draw such inspiration from our nation’s community bankers.

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15 Minutes With … Jimmy Rasmussen

Independent Banker

In addition to spending time with family, Jimmy Rasmussen enjoys sporting activities, including fishing and deer hunting. Photo by Robert Seale. President and CEO for the $543 Million-Asset HomeTown Bank, N.A., in Galveston, Texas. IB: You were recently reelected to serve a second term on the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas board of directors. Rasmussen: Yes, it is an honor to serve the Group 3 Banks in Texas, southern New Mexico and northern Louisiana for three more years.

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Rebeca Romero Rainey: Let’s continue to push the boundaries

Independent Banker

. “Stepping into the unknown can help us accomplish great things.”. It was wonderful to see so many of you at ICBA LIVE a few weeks ago in Nashville, Tenn. It’s always great to be with fellow community bankers, and now, as ICBA president and CEO, our members! What a great time we had—full of learning, inspiration and fun. Our theme this year was all about being bold, in innovation, leadership and life. Stepping into the unknown can help us accomplish great things.

10 Keys to AI Success in 2021

Capitalizing on the incredible potential of AI means having a coherent AI strategy that you can operationalize within your existing processes. Learn how organizations are overcoming hurdles and realizing the enormous rewards that AI can bring to any organization.