Vol. 108 2024 Issue 3 (may/June)

Chairman’s Report

Ben-Bochnowski- Chairman IBA FEATURE

Bankers like consistency from our regulators – knowing what we can expect so we can keep our efforts focused on planning for the future and how we can best leverage our resources to build stronger communities where we work and live. As regulatory agencies continue to propose new rules and changes to old ones, it can be easy to grow frustrated and blame it on Washington politics. That is why we must remain engaged. When regulatory uncertainty increases, it is our responsibility to double down on advocating for the best environment to serve our customers.

We have opened registration for the IBA Annual Washington Trip, this Sept. 23-25. Our dedicated team at the IBA is diligently coordinating in-person meetings with representatives from the American Bankers Association, Independent Community Bankers of America and banking regulators at The Willard InterContinental Hotel. They are also arranging meetings with Indiana’s congressional delegation on Capitol Hill, providing a prime opportunity for you to carry the message of Indiana banking directly to our elected representatives.

Grassroots advocacy is at the heart of this organization. The Association demonstrates that in part by not charging a registration fee for this event. We do ask that bankers cover their own travel and hotel costs, but the Association and our valued associate-member sponsors will cover group meals. From personal experience, the investment is well worth it to be a part of shaping our regulatory environment. Nothing impacts legislators and regulators like the in-person, up-front personal stories from bankers across the state so secure a spot for yourself and others from your bank at the IBA Annual Washington Trip.

On behalf of all IBA members, my heartfelt congratulations and gratitude go to the IBA Government Relations Team for another session of incredible work at the Statehouse advocating for bankers in Indiana. Learn more about their successes during this year’s legislative session summary.

I also want to thank the rest of the IBA staff for an incredible year last year, as you’ll see detailed in our 2023 Member Benefits Report, and thank you to all our members for your continued engagement and support.

Ben is chairman and CEO of Peoples Bank, Munster, and its holding company, Finward Bancorp. He also serves on the board of directors of the Indiana Department of Financial Institutions, a position he was appointed to by Gov. Eric Holcomb in 2019.

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