Bank receives state approval for new banking development district program
Bank of Akron officially opened its new branch in Wilson last week. This is the bank’s sixth location in Western New York and its first in Niagara County.
As part of this news, Bank of Akron also confirmed it has received approval from the New York State Department of Financial Services to participate in the banking development district (BDD) program in Wilson. Through this approval, the bank will be able to provide services for underbanked consumers and small businesses in the community, who have been without a bank branch since 2016.
The announcements were part of a ceremonial press event hosted at the adjacent Woodcock Brothers Brewery, attended by Bank of Akron President and CEO Anthony J. Delmonte Jr., Town of Wilson Supervisor Doyle H. Phillips, Town of Wilson Mayor Arthur Lawson, and Financial Services Superintendent Linda A. Lacewell, as well as bank leadership, Wilson branch staff, local and state elected officials, and members of the general public.
“With this new branch and BDD designation, we are proud to expand access to banking services in Wilson,” Delmonte said. “In partnering with the New York State Department of Financial Services and the Town and Village of Wilson on this BDD program, we will provide accessible and reliable services to an underbanked community that has not had them available for some time.”
“It is an honor to receive designation as a banking development district,” Phillips said. “The collaboration between New York state, Bank of Akron, and the Town and Village of Wilson shows the positive, meaningful impact of working together to better serve the greater needs of our town, village and its residents.”
“This is a special day for our region,” Lawson said. “For years, our community has been without local banking services to support those who live and work here. Today, we are proud to bring these services to the Town and Village of Wilson, for every resident in need.”
The new Wilson branch will offer a range of personal, commercial and lending services for its customers. Its manager, Colleen Bowman, is a lifelong Wilson resident with 35 years of banking experience.
The accompanying BDD approval represents New York official recognition Wilson has a demonstrated need for banking services. It marks the culmination of a co-application process with Bank of Akron and the Town and Village of Wilson, which began in late 2018.
“New Yorkers should have equal access to basic banking services,” Lacewell said. “Until today, the Town of Wilson was a banking desert where residents had to travel nearly 15 miles roundtrip to access affordable banking products. The beauty of the BDD program brings those services close to home and will help spur opportunities for economic growth and job creation for residents and main street businesses.”
New York’s BDD program, administered by the DFS, is designed to encourage the establishment of bank branches in areas across the state that are underserved by banking institutions.
This news follows a year of sustained growth for Bank of Akron, which most recently included the launch of a new online and mobile banking system. Headquartered in the Village of Akron, in Erie County, the bank is a $388-million-asset lender.
Bank of Akron’s Wilson branch is now accepting new customers. It is located at 638 Lake St. Hours of operation are 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday to Thursday, and from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday. For more information, visit bankofakron.com.
Established in 1900, Bank of Akron provides a full range of financial services, including residential mortgages, construction loans and home equity lines of credit, as well as commercial loans and mortgages. Bank of Akron has six branches located in Akron, Clarence, Clarence Center, Lancaster and, now, Wilson.