First Northern Bank Receives ‘Outstanding’ Rating From FDIC For Community Reinvestment Efforts

First Northern Bank, a wholly owned subsidiary of First Northern Community Bancorp (OTCQB: FNRN), is pleased to announce that it has received an “Outstanding” rating—the highest possible—from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) for its performance under the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA).

The Community Reinvestment Act is a federal law that requires regulatory agencies such as the FDIC to examine banks to ensure that they are meeting the credit needs of the communities they serve—including low- and moderate-income communities—consistent with safe and sound business practices. With regard to the CRA, the FDIC audits First Northern every two to three years to evaluate the Bank’s performance in three areas: lending, community development, and services. The current evaluation covered the Bank’s CRA activities from May 27, 2008, through November 21, 2011. The FDIC announced the results earlier this month.

“The Bank has demonstrated that it is a leader in making community development loans, particularly during the poor state of the economy,” the FDIC report said.

“We are extremely pleased to be recognized by the FDIC for our efforts to give back to the community and help our business customers grow,” said Louise Walker, President & CEO.

“That strong commitment has guided the Bank since its founding 102 years ago,” she continued. “While it has been challenging during the prolonged economic recession, First Northern has not wavered in its support of the communities in which our employees and customers live. Additionally, the Bank’s strong capital and liquidity positions have enabled us to remain active and competitive in extending loans to businesses and individuals throughout our communities.”

The full FDIC report is available for viewing on First Northern’s Website, under Community Reinvestment Act.

Employees Dedicated to the Community

Over the past five years, Bank employees have volunteered more than 33,700 hours of their time for community service—providing the equivalent of more than 16 full-time staff people. Remarkably, 77% of those hours were volunteered since the recession began in late 2007, and include:
  • Serving as Treasurer and Board members for non-profit organizations that serve the mentally disabled, feed hungry families, and develop affordable housing.
  • Serving on the boards of local economic development and business organizations to bring new business to the area and serving on the loan committee of a city’s economic development program to make loans to area businesses.
  • Feeding the elderly and homeless; providing holiday gifts for families in need and children fighting cancer; and providing safe after-school alternatives for at-risk teens.

Since 2005, the Bank has contributed more than $1.1 million in cash and in-kind services to over 200 non-profit organizations, 45% of which are serving people and families in need.