See What's New at Santa Cruz County Bank
Stuff the Bus school supply drive - July 1st through July 31st at all branches
We invite you to join us for Stuff the Bus! Santa Cruz County Bank has teamed up with the United Way of Santa Cruz County and the Santa Cruz Office of Education – Write Start Project to collect backpacks and school supplies to support youth experiencing homelessness in our community. Pop-up school buses will be displayed at each Santa Cruz County Bank branch to collect donated items. On August 8th, Santa Cruz County Bank employees will join community volunteers to fill backpacks with school supplies and stuff the yellow school bus!
George Harrison joins as Senior Vice President and Chief Credit Officer
Santa Cruz County Bank is pleased to announce George Harrison will join the bank as Senior Vice President and Chief Credit Officer, effective June 29, 2015.
Mr. Harrison has an extensive education and professional background in finance, lending, credit administration and credit review, and has held the title of Chief Credit Officer and Senior Loan Officer for four independent community banks in Northern California. Most recently, Mr. Harrison was Chief Credit Officer for the past three years for Community Bank of the Bay where he managed a diverse loan portfolio, supervised lending and credit administration, and supervised the growth of the loan portfolio while maintaining strong credit quality.
Early in his career, with Lloyds Bank, Mr. Harrison established himself as a proficient manager and commercial banker with strong analytical skills. With his comprehensive understanding of banking, he accelerated through the ranks in commercial banking and lending to Chief Credit Officer. Later, he established Restuccia & Harrison, the largest independent loan review and examination firm in Northern California, where he spent ten years as a General Partner. In 2010, he launched The Harrison Financial Group, an independent bank consulting and credit review firm.
Mr. Harrison obtained a Bachelor of Science degree in Finance from the University of Utah, and graduated from the American Bankers Association’s Commercial Lending Graduate School in Oklahoma.
Commenting on his new appointment, Mr. Harrison stated, “Santa Cruz County Bank is well known in the industry as a well-managed bank with exceptional financial ratings. I am extremely honored to become part of the bank’s experienced management team and I look forward to contributing to its continued growth and future successes.”
The Bank’s Chief Credit Officer position was previously held by Geoffrey Loftus, who passed away in January 2015.
David Heald, President and CEO commented, “George brings a well-rounded and unique background to the Chief Credit Officer position though his experience managing credit portfolios and his understanding of credit risk and loan reviews. His experience managing credit portfolios and understanding of credit risk are essential to his position and are an asset to the Bank. We look forward to George’s contributions to the Bank and to our community in the years ahead.”
Mr. Harrison will be based out of the Bank’s Administrative headquarters in Santa Cruz.
Santa Cruz County Bank is a 4-Star "Excellent" Rated Bank
Santa Cruz County Bank is rated a 4-Star “Excellent” bank by Bauer Financial, Inc. based upon its financial performance for the quarter ending March 31, 2015. Bauer Financial has been reporting on and analyzing the performance of U.S. banks and credit unions since 1983. For more information on Bauer Financial, Inc. visit www.bauerfinancial.com. Santa Cruz County Bank has ranked as a 4-Star “Excellent” and 5-Star “Superior” bank every quarter in the history of our ratings from Bauer Financial.
Santa Cruz County Bank Reports First Quarter Earnings for 2015
The Bank reported a 44% increase in net income for the first quarter ended March 31, 2015 to $1.25 million compared to the prior year. The Bank’s reputation as a leading lender with responsive decision making has continued to drive its loan production. For the first quarter, gross loans increased 4%, and year over year increased 18% or $51.1 million. The Bank had zero loans on non-accrual and no OREO at March 31, 2015. Total deposits increased $61.8 million or 17% to $428.1 million and total assets increased $67.3 million or 17% to $474.5 million over the prior year.
For the period ended March 31, 2015, the Bank’s return on average equity was 12.78% and return on average assets was 1.09%. The book value per share of Santa Cruz County Bank’s common stock at March 31, 2015 was $18.62 up from $16.35 for the same period in 2014. Shareholders' equity increased by $5.1 million, 15% to $40.0 million as of March 31, 2015 over the prior year.
David V. Heald commented, “We are very pleased to report a 44% increase in earnings over our prior year. Our superior earnings have resulted from a $51 million in growth in loans over the past 12 months. Deposits have increased 17% or $62 million, which represents a further strengthening of our market share, and pushes us over the $474 million mark in total assets.”
To read more about the Bank’s performance, please visit our Investor Relations page, which includes quarterly and annual financial reports dating back to 2004.
Santa Cruz County Bank Named Super Premier Performing Bank
Santa Cruz County Bank has been recognized as a Super Premier Performing Bank for its 2014 financial performance. This is the fifth consecutive year Santa Cruz County Bank has been recognized as a Super Premier Performing Bank by The Findley Reports, Inc. a highly regarded financial industry consulting firm that has been recognizing the financial performance of banking institutions for over forty years. In evaluating banks for recognition, The Findley Reports focuses on four components: growth, return on beginning equity, net operating income as a percentage of average assets and loan losses as a percentage of gross loans. Super Premier is the highest rating level established by The Findley Reports, Inc. David Heald, President and CEO of Santa Cruz County Bank commented, “This designation is the result of the hard work and dedication of our Board of Directors, our Management team and our employees to meet high service standards and deliver exceptional value for our shareholders.”
Santa Cruz County Bank Voted “Best Bank”!
The votes are in! Once again Santa Cruz County Bank was voted “Best Bank” in the annual Best of Santa Cruz County Good Times Readers’ Poll. Thank you to all Good Times readers and customers who cast their vote for us! The results mirror our mission to be the community’s bank of choice.
Santa Cruz County Bank Arts Collaborative presents “California Dreaming"
When you think of California, what images come to mind? Opening February 20th, five local contemporary painters explore new frontiers of expression in California Dreaming in answer to that question. This large format exhibition offers a broad perspective of the mesmerizing beauty of the central coast.
Curated by Joan Blackmer, California Dreaming will be shown at all five Santa Cruz County Bank branches through August 7, 2015. The exhibit includes 55 works by artists John Crawford, John Maxon, Michael Mote, Charles Prentiss and Margaret Rinkovsky.
Promotion of Heather La Fontaine
Santa Cruz County Bank has promoted Heather La Fontaine to Chief Administrative Officer. Ms. La Fontaine joined the Bank in 2006 as Risk Management Officer and has been responsible for administering the Bank’s Human Resources, Compliance and Risk Management programs. Since joining the Bank she has been appointed Senior Vice President, and during her tenure, has served as its Enterprise Risk Manager, holding Officer positions responsible for Regulatory Compliance, BSA/AML, OFAC/FinCEN, S.A.F.E. Act, CRA and Human Resources management.
In her new position as Senior Vice President and Chief Administrative Officer, Ms. La Fontaine will continue to manage Human Resources, Risk Management, Compliance and Legal matters with added responsibilities for Central Operations, eBanking and Branch Operations.
In addition to her Business Administration degree with honors in Finance and Psychology attained at California State University, Stanislaus, Ms. La Fontaine took graduate courses in substantive law application, criminal law, torts and contract law at Lincoln School of Law. Most recently, she is a graduate of Pacific Coast Banking School (PCBS), a National Graduate School of Banking at the University of Washington in Bellevue, Washington and a graduate of the ABA National Compliance School. Ms. La Fontaine has over 18 years of banking experience.
Ms. La Fontaine was born in Santa Cruz and now lives in the Santa Cruz mountains with her husband and two children.
Celebrating 11 Years Serving Santa Cruz County
To commemorate our 11th year serving Santa Cruz County, we invite our community – customers, founders, directors, shareholders, and community partners to join us for a week-long celebration. Come in to any of our five banking locations for Customer Appreciation celebration week from February 2 – 6, 2015. We thank you for supporting our vision to be the local community bank of choice.
Ventura D. León joins as Vice President and Branch Administrator
Santa Cruz County Bank is pleased to welcome well-known local banker, Ventura D. León, as Vice President and Branch Administrator.
In his 38 year banking career, Mr. León has established himself as a professional leader in the banking industry for branch operations, employee development, training and overseeing sales. His professional background includes Vice President and Branch Manager for Wells Fargo Bank’s Santa Cruz and Pajaro Valley offices from 1996-2012 and most recently as Branch Manager for U.S. Bank in Scotts Valley and Santa Cruz.
“I am very excited to work for a local community Bank that is actively engaged and committed to community outreach on an ongoing basis. Santa Cruz County Bank is well respected for its outstanding financial performance and ratings and I’m honored to be a part of it,” stated Mr. León.
David Heald, President and CEO commented, “Ventura is a well-known and respected banker in our community. He has built a reputation for developing loyal client relationships through his outstanding customer service. We look forward to his contributions to our bank and our community in the years ahead.”
Mr. León is a past board member of the California Grey Bears and Dientes Community Dental Clinic and a prior Rotarian for Santa Cruz and Watsonville Rotary clubs.
Mr. León is based out of the Bank’s Aptos office at 7775 Soquel Drive.
Best Bank in Santa Cruz County!
We wish to thank everyone who cast a vote to identify us as the “Best Bank” in Santa Cruz County in the Santa Cruz Sentinel's 2014 Readers Choice Awards poll. Our mission is to be the community’s bank of choice. According to the results of this poll as well as the Good Times readers poll, we have succeeded in our mission to be the community’s bank of choice.
Santa Cruz County Bank Ranks in American Banker Magazine’s Top 200 Best Performing Community Banks and Thrifts in the United States
Santa Cruz County Bank ranked 115th in American Banker Magazine’s Top Performing 200 Community Banks and Thrifts in the United States. A total of 851 institutions, with less than $2 billion in assets, were included in the nationwide ranking. Ranking was based upon 3-year average return on equity for the years ending December 31, 2011, 2012 and 2013. This is the second consecutive year Santa Cruz County Bank has ranked in the Top 200 Community Banks.
David Heald, President and CEO commented, “This outstanding performance ranking is the result of our focus and commitment to enhance shareholder value. Our Board of Directors, our Management team and our entire staff are to be commended for our performance.”
Be The Difference Award
One important mission for Santa Cruz County Bank is to offer continued support for our community. We are proud to provide volunteers, fundraising efforts and sponsorships throughout the county for various events. For more information regarding our community involvement visit our Community Involvement page.
In October, Santa Cruz County Bank received the 2013 Volunteer Center of Santa Cruz “Be The Difference” Business Award for leadership and volunteer efforts. We attribute the achievement to all of our employees, our Management team members and our Board of Directors, who are all actively engaged in reinvesting in our community.
Read the full story about Be The Difference Award recipients, nominees, groups, individuals and businesses, including Santa Cruz County Bank.
To view our Be The Difference Award Video, which includes a thank you to all of our Board of Directors and employees, click here
Green Minded Businesses
Meet some of the Green Minded Businesses that bank with us! We're pleased to have relationships with local businesses that have made a commitment to environmental practices. If you're a green minded business that would like to bank with Santa Cruz County Bank, let us know!