Community banks are invested in their communities and their customers. Here at First Federal, we thrive when our customers and communities do the same, so taking care of our customers and looking out for the best interest of our community is ingrained in the way we conduct our business.
When calling us, be assured that you are talking to someone who lives and works in the same community you do. Go local and bank locally with us! The money invested in your local community bank will be reinvested in ways that drive the local economy, such as in the form of loans to local residents who want to buy a home. By driving local economies and creating local jobs, community banks are an integral part of our financial system and play a key role in our nation's economic recovery.
First Federal takes pride in great customer service and with reinvesting in our Van Wert and surrounding communities.
Relay For Life is the American Cancer Society's signature event and offers everyone in the community the opportunity to participate in the fight against cancer during this 18-hour event. First Federal was recognized as one of the top fundraising teams again this year during the Van Wert County Relay for Life closing ceremony on May 4th. Brian Renner, President/CEO accepted the Silver Team award banner, raising $3,500.
To help with fundraising prior to the event, First Federal sponsored two raffle drawings to win a 2013 gold eagle collector's coin and an Urban Meyer autographed mini OSU helmet. Suzie Grimes, Controller, presented the winner, Chris Thomas, the gold coin, as Tina Miller, Loan Operations looked on. Nancy Elston, Receptionist, presented Jon Okuly with the OSU helmet.
Members of the First Federal Employee Team took shifts and walked all through the night. Team members that raised funds/walked were Rhonda Belt, Tina Miller, Brian Renner, Diana Cearns, Ruth Schutz, Nancy Elston, Suzie Grimes, Amber Evans, Lori Garwood, Julie Perkins, Jenny (Jim) Nelson, Tammy Nihiser, Patty Lassiter, Becky Scheidt, Sheri Tindall, and Ashley Kittle.
Special thanks to local racers, 14-year old Cooper Clouse from Ohio City along with Russ Belt from Van Wert, who had their race machines on display at the First Federal campsite in the spirit of this year's relay them "Drive Out Cancer." First Federal was recognized for having the best themed campsite.
To add to the fun of the event, Ruth Schutz, Operations Department, made a cardboard box car for a relay event race, and First Federal won the overall design award for the car. First Federal wants to thank all of its supporters and customers that purchased raffle tickets, relay for life luminaria, moons and stars that were displayed in the lobby in memory or in honor of loved ones, and individual donations to support First Federal's team efforts.
First Federal Promotes Cearns to Officer
Brian Renner, President of First Federal of Van Wert, announced that Diana Cearns was promoted to BSA Officer and Operations Officer during First Federal's March board meeting. Cearns joined First Federal in May 2011 and has a combined 20 years in the financial services industry. She currently manages the operations department.
Cearns is a graduate of Van Wert High School and received a bachelor's degree in finance and accounting from The Ohio State University. She has also attended various banking classes and seminars, graduating from the Ohio School of Banking, Bank Leadership Institute, and Community Bankers for Operations/Deposit Compliance School. She is currently attending the Leadership Program sponsored by the Van Wert Chamber of Commerce.
She is a longtime member of the Van Wert Optimist Club and Calvary Evangelical Church and has also been involved in various community activities including Relay for Life.
Cearns and her husband, Paul, reside in rural Convoy with their daughter, Courtney and son, Cameron. Posted 05/02/2013
First Federal has fun with a Cupcake Day
On Friday, April 19th, First Federal served a large variety of cupcakes in the lobby in appreciation for customers and in celebration of April being "Community Banking Month". Employees participated by baking and bringing cupcakes for the occasion. To add fun to the event, Brian Renner, President, had two Board members, Paul Svabik and Randy Myers stop by and judge the cupcakes for best taste and appearance. Ruth Schutz received first place for her best tasting chocolate cupcake topped with a peanut butter cup, and Amber Evans received second place with her coconut topped spice cupcake. Diana Cearns won first place for appearance with the raspberry topped chocolate cupcake, and Ashley Kittle was second for her oreo topped cupcake. Posted 04/23/2013
First Federal assists with gateway sculpture for Wassenberg
A steel sculpture archway portal which will be crafted by sculptor Michael Bendele of Delphos will stand 12 feet on both sides of the sidewalk leading to the entrance of what will become the new Wassenberg Art Center at 214 S. Washington St.. A model of the work is pictured at the former Van Wert Armory Building, along with representatives of the Wassenberg Art Center. First Federal of Van Wert has contributed to the financing of this archway sculpture project.
Pictured are (from the left): Brian Renner, First Federal President; Thad Lichtensteiger, Van Wert County Commissioner; Mike Cross, Van Wert County Foundation Board Member and First Federal Board Chairman: Terry Eikenbary, Wassenberg Art Center Board of Directors President; Hope Wallace, Wassenberg Art Center Executive Director; Larry Wendel, Van Wert County Foundation Executive Secretary; and Michael Bendele, Sculptor. Posted 04/01/2013
First Federal Promotes Grimes to Officer
The Board of Directors of First Federal of Van Wert, OH has announced the promotion of Suzie Grimes to an officer of the Association. Grimes began her career at First Federal in November, 2007 as Accounting Clerk. She was promoted to Controller in 2010.
Grimes is a graduate of Van Wert High School and the University of Northwestern Ohio. She is a graduate of the Van Wert Leadership class and now serves on the Van Wert Leadership committee. Grimes is also the treasurer for the Van Wert Youth Baseball and serves on the board of the United Way of Van Wert County.
Grimes and her husband, Jon, reside in rural Van Wert along with her son, Gavin, and her stepson, Travis Grimes.
First Federal of Van Wert is a locally owned and operated institution. First Federal has been serving the Van Wert community since 1893. As an independent community bank,
First Federal takes great pride in supporting the Van Wert community.
First Federal Elects New Director
At the January 16th, 2012 Annual Meeting of the Members of First Federal S&L Association of Van Wert, MHC, Randy D. Myers was elected to the Board of Directors. Myers replaces C. Allan Runser who retired after 37 years of service to First Federal. The other current directors for First Federal are Michael T. Cross, Paul W. Svabik, J. Andrew Czajkowski and Brian R. Renner.
Myers is a life-long resident of Van Wert County. He began his insurance career in 1980. In 1984, Myers started Leland Smith Life and Health in Decatur, IN. In 1994, he opened Leland Smith Insurance Services in Van Wert. He currently operates offices in Van Wert, Antwerp, Convoy and the Shisler Insurance Agency in Paulding.
Myers has been a member of the Van Wert Service Club for 25 years. He is currently serving as County Representative on the Van Wert County Board of Health and previously was a representative on the Westwood Behavior Health Board.
Myers and his wife, Betty, reside in rural Van Wert. They have raised three daughters, Krista Schlemmer of Van Wert, Amy Amstutz of Hilliard, OH and Brooke Myers of Van Wert.
First Federal of Van Wert is a locally owned and operated institution. First Federal has been serving the Van Wert community since 1893. As an independent community bank, First Federal takes great pride in supporting the Van Wert community. Posted 01/24/2013
Fun United Way Fundraising Events
First Federal had a lot of fun, along with many other area banks, leading the way as Pacesetters for the 2012 United Way fundraising campaign. Beginning September 10th, First Federal participated in "Penny Wars" with the other area banks, asking for customer donations to support the fundraising. With employee and customer support, First Federal received a total of $950.90 in donations for the pacesetter events. To assist with fundraising, First Federal sponsored a popcorn day for donation, and held raffle drawings.
Tina Miller & Becky Scheidt helped serve the popcorn. Suzie Grimes presented prizes to raffle winners.
First Federal President, Brian Renner was duct-taped to a wall on October 3rd as one of the fundraising events, raising $1 for a foot of duct-tape. On October 11th, First Federal was named the 1st place winner in the 2012 Pacesetter Chili Cook-off that took place in downtown Van Wert in front of the courthouse. First Federal raffle drawing winners were drawn on October 12th. Brad Schwartz won the Ohio State Scentsy Warmer, Leland Oakley won the 20" Huffy Bicycle (donated by Walmart), and Carol Kill (not pictured) won the 9/11 Commemorative Coins. The 2012 United Way pacesetters presented a check for $3,565.94 to United Way of Van Wert County in the combined bank effort. First Federal would like to thank their employees and customers as they participated in and supported the fundraising events. Posted 10/19/2012.
Brian Renner was duct-taped to raise funds. Amber Evans & Suzie Grimes served the winning chili.
Rhonda Belt, Loan Officer with First Federal volunteered throughout a 9-week program and taught the YWCA Summer Food Program participants about basic money management and savings. This is the third consecutive year that First Federal has participated in the education of the Summer Food Program children ages 10-12. Posted 8-17-2012.
John White of the Van Wert City Tennis Association was presented a check by Lori Garwood (left) and Suzie Grimes (right) representing First Federal of Van Wert, in support of the Van Wert County Foundation Tennis Complex. Posted 7-18-2012.
First Federal is sponsoring a "When Pigs Fly" event where pigs will fly through Van Wert for this year's sixth annual Rib Fest. At approximately 3 p.m. on August 4, little plastic piggies will be dropped from overhead and fly over the festival grounds as part of this first annual fundraiser.
Each pig is numbered to a corresponding raffle ticket that the United Way is selling for $10 each. The person holding the number of the piggy that lands closest to the "pig pen" wins $750. The second-place prize is $250 and furthest away prize is $250. In case of a tie, the money will be divided equally.
The goal this year is to sell 500 tickets, with 60 percent of the proceeds going directly to the United Way, and the other proceeds to benefit the Van Wert Convention and Visitors Bureau. Tickets can be obtained from First Federal at 679 Fox Road, from any United Way Board member, the United Way office at 1151 Westwood Drive or by calling that agency at 419.238.6689. Tickets are also available at the Van Wert Area Convention and Visitors office at 136 E. Main St.
The Rib Fest was established six years ago as a fundraiser to benefit the Van Wert Area Convention and Visitors Bureau. There will be lots of great food with eight of the area's best rib cookers along with live musical entertainment. The Rib Fest will be held on August 3-4 at the Van Wert County Fairgrounds. Festival hours are from 11 a.m. to midnight on Friday and noon to midnight on Saturday. A $2 admission will be charged after 5 p.m. on Friday and all day on Saturday. Posted 6-27-12
The Van Wert County Foundation appointed Brian Renner as a new trustee during a meeting held June 12, 2012.
Executive Secretary Larry L. Wendel said Brian Renner was elected as a trustee, with a five-year term running from June 2012 through June 2017. Renner is currently chief executive officer of First Federal Savings & Loan Association, and is a graduate of Lincolnview High School and Bluffton College.
Renner has attended several banking classes and seminars and is a graduate of the Academy of Financial Executives, and Fisher College of Business of The Ohio State University. He has also been very active in the community, serving as a member of the former Sertoma Club, Van Wert Service Club, and Guild Inc. Renner is a member of the Middle Point Ballpark Board and also serves as a youth sports coach. He and his wife, Stephanie, have two children, Carter and Emerson, and reside in Van Wert. Posted 6-27-12
The Holiday at Home July 4th fireworks show will be coming soon! Rhonda Belt, Loan Officer, presented a $500 donation from First Federal to support the fireworks show, along with many other private contributors from the community which raised a total amount of $13,200 to fund the event. Posted 6-27-12.