September 19, 2018

In This Issue: 
Message From the President

By John Witkowski, President & CEO

IBANYS Welcomes Our Four Newest Associate Members! 
  • The Financial Guys Insurance Agencyan independent wealth management firm in Williamsville, New York. Their independence allows broad access to financial products and services, and gives clients the opportunity to consider almost all investment, insurance and wealth management products available on the market. For details, contact April Hartloff at: or (716) 633-1515.
  • Advanced Cyber Security Corporationpatent holder of the keyboard encryption technology, is currently a security partner with McAfee/Intel. Services include dark web scanning, fully managed recovery if a breach occurs and breach protection insurance policies. For further information, please contact Stephen DelGiorno at: or (866) 417-9155. 
  • CB2 Financial Technologies was founded by bankers for bankers to bring the benefits of proven, secure cloud-based technology to the commercial lending arena of community banks. The firm is dedicated to providing affordable, easy to implement solutions to help community banks better serve their clients and achieve their financial goals. Contact Tim Finkenstaedt at: or (508) 505-8543.
  • S.R. Snodgrass, P.C. is an independent accounting and consulting firm founded in 1946. Serving approximately 160 financial services clients, the firm is known as "the banking experts" -- providing expertise in such areas as auditing and assurance, internal audit and regulatory compliance outsourcing, information technology, consulting, enterprise risk management and tax management. Contact Christina Lukas at: or (724) 934-0344. 
Welcome aboard! IBANYS' associate members and preferred partners provide products and services to our member banks to help them remain strong and profitable, and to continue serving their local customers and communities throughout New York State!


See You Next Week At IBANYS' 2018 Annual Convention!

New York community bankers and organizations gather NEXT WEEK for the  IBANYS 2018 Annual Convention in Albany.  It all starts Tuesday, September 25th with golf at the Wolferts Roost Country Club, the opening of our trade show, and our opening dinner with opening remarks by IBANYS Chairman Mike Briggs of USNY Bank and Albany historian/ "Explore Albany" expert Maeve McEneny-Johnson. 

Although our room block has lapsed, there are still some rooms available for the Convention by contacting the hotel directly. The Hilton Albany is located at 40 Lodge Street  in Albany and provides a setting rich in history with various nearby local attractions such as the NYS Museum and NYS Capitol Building to explore during downtime. 

If you are looking for a way to get involved in our Convention, you still can! 
Sponsoring an event provides your company a chance  to be recognized and enhances the visibility of your organization to attendees, in addition to showing your support for community banking. Another way to get involved is through our signature exhibitor tradeshowOur tradeshow puts your company and its products/services at the forefront with consumers and potential business prospects, while also providing something that is unmatched in today's digital age: face-to-face interaction. There are only six booths remaining, so don't wait to grab yours!

Our PAC Silent Auction is another great way to get involved. By donating an item, you are not only showcasing items from your region but you are also contributing to an essential committee that focuses and advocates or community banks in NYS legislative affairs. With our new PAC Silent Auction video, you can learn in-depth what PAC is all about, plus s ee some of the items that have already been donated to this year's auction, such as a Buffalo Sports Weekend: NHL & NFL, Mackenzie-Childs items, or a Sonos One Speaker. 

Still not sold? Our program will examine a number of timely -- and important -- topics for community banks spoken by experts in the field. Some of our speakers include Rebeca Romero Rainey-- President & CEO of ICBA, Maria Vullo-- NYS DFS Superintendent, among others. There is also a chance for you to earn up to 12.5 CPE credits! IBANYS is authorized by the New York State Department of Education to award continuing professional education (CPE) credits. Don't miss a valuable learning opportunity while connecting with individuals who share the common goal of promoting and enhancing community banking.

Register, sponsor, or exhibit for the signature event of the year and demonstrate your support for community banks. For full Convention information, including the brochure, see the 2018 Annual Convention section of today's newsletter. We look forward to seeing you in Albany next week!


Don't Miss This Fun Weekend -- For Great Causes!

On behalf of Buffalo Bills Alumni Foundation President, Booker Edgerson, I want to make sure that you are aware of the following dates for the annual Buffalo Bills Alumni Weekend of Events. 

P lease mark your calendars now and be a part of this outstanding fundraising event that benefits so many charitable organizations in the Western New York area.  Here are the dates for Alumni Weekend:
  • Friday, October 5 - Alumni Foundation VIP Gala
  • Saturday, October 6 - Alumni Charity Celebrity Golf Classic
  • Sunday, October 7 - Bills vs. Titans
For full information, click the image or download the flyer


As always, thank you for your support of IBANYS and all you do for community banking.

Remember: IBANYS is YOUR association. Make it work for you!

- John
Follow IBANYS On Social Media!

Have you found and followed IBANYS on social media yet? Connect with us today!


Facebook: @ibanys1 | Twitter: @ibanys1

Instagram: @ibanys1 | LinkedIn: @ibanys

2018 Annual Convention

                                                         PresidentMessConvention  2018 IBANYS Annual ConventionConvention

            September 25-27, 2018
                         Hilton Albany
                      40 Lodge Street
                    Albany, NY 12207

                    Hotel Information
A block of rooms has been reserved at the Hilton Albany. Reservations can be made by the following: 

Arrival Date:
 September 25, 2018
Departure Date:  September 27, 2018

           Price of Rooms & Exclusive Deals  

           Refer to Group Code:  1IBANY

                Web:  Click Here                     
         Phone:   1-866-691-1183

*Room Block Has Ended, But You Can Still Make A Reservation By Contacting the Hilton Albany directly at  (518) 462-6611*


Member banks:   Share this information  with your senior management teams, officers, directors, compliance, security and human resources officers.  Preferred partners, associate members and business show exhibitors:  Now is the time to plan to attend, participate, sponsor/exhibit.  Contact Linda Gregware at or at (518) 436-4646.

Brent Biernat, Sr. Vice President & Chief 
Marketing Officer

With over two decades of experience at COCC, Brent H. Biernat has proven to be the best ambassador for the company's growth. Prior to coming to COCC, Mr. Biernat managed his own computer consulting firm, as well as worked for the University of Connecticut Computer Center. During his time at COCC, Mr. Biernat played a primary role in building the company's network services platform and managed their security services while leading their numerous technical teams to great success. That experience, coupled with Mr. Biernat's client-centric focus and leadership, has springboarded him into becoming the perfect answer for COCC's business development strategy. Since his transition into this role, Mr. Biernat has created a business development team with excellent synergy and energy, enabling the company to sell more effectively than ever before.

Mr. Biernat earned his bachelor's degree from the University of Connecticut and an Executive Certificate from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Sloan School of Management focusing on executive leadership in the field of technology. Mr. Biernat has served on the board of the Connecticut Technology Council and as Chairman of AT&T National Focus Board. Mr. Biernat is a sought out and frequent speaker at financial industry events throughout the country. 

Mr. Biernat will be presenting on Wednesday, September 26 at 10:15 a.m., along with Kyle Charette, with their presentation "Threats and Opportunities: Navigating the FinTech Evolution".


Kyle Charette, Asst. Vice President,
Business Development

During his seven years at COCC, Mr. Charette has repeatedly demonstrated COCC's "get it done" attitude when it comes to delivering results. 

Most recently, Mr. Charette has been critical in building COCC's sales support team, which has been responsible for supporting the incredible efforts that have allowed COCC to sign several new clients over the past few years. Mr. Charette truly leads by example and is a shining example of the collaborative culture that is so important to the success of COCC.

Mr. Charette will be presenting on Wednesday, September 26 at 10:15 a.m., along with Brent Biernat, with their presentation "Threats and Opportunities: Navigating the FinTech Evolution".


Charles A. Amodio, CPA, Partner
Ferraro, Amodio & Zarecki, CPA's

Mr. Amodio is a Certified Public Accountant, a Master Analyst in Financial Forensics and is Certified in Financial Forensics. 

Mr. Amodio is a Partner with Ferraro, Amodio & Zarecki, CPAs Forensic Accountants and Financial Advisors and specializes in the areas of insurance loss accounting, economic damage analysis, litigation support and financial investigations. In addition, Mr. Amodio has provided lost profits and business interruption training to several insurance companies and trade associations.

Mr. Amodio has extensive experience in the conduct of No-Fault auto lost wage claims and Business Interruption claims. He analyzes and reports on lost wage and substitute wage assessments for self-employed motorists involved in automobile accidents. In addition, he analyzes lost profit and extra expense claims for businesses that have experienced an interruption and provides forensic accounting services of claims for financial motive and investigation of employee thefts.

Mr. Amodio is a member of the local and national Associations of Certified Fraud Examiners (ACFE), National Association of Certified Valuators and Analysts (NACVA), and the New York State Chapter of Special Investigation Units (NYSSIU). He earned his Master of Business Administration Degree with a concentration in accounting from the College of Saint Rose in Albany, New York, and a Bachelor of Science Degree from Pfeiffer University in Misenheimer, North Carolina.

Mr. Amodio will be our panel discussion moderator on Thursday, September 27 at 10:30 a.m. with the discussion of "Investigating and Preventing Employee Misconduct: Cybersecurity to Fraud".


Show Your Support At Our PAC Silent Auction! SilentAuction

Wednesday, September 26, 5:30 to 7:15 p.m.

Our PAC Silent Auction is back! This popular convention feature is the perfect opportunity to showcase items from your region, while contributing to an essential committee that focuses and advocates for community banks in NYS legislative affairs.

The PAC contributes to New York State candidates and officials who understand and support the vital role community banks play in our local and state economies, as well as our communities. 

By donating a gift, you are also utilizing an exciting and creative opportunity to communicate to others what your organization and local community are all about. Items from your local region such as wine, food, tickets to special events, art, etc. convey what is unique and exclusive to your area: what makes your community, your community. Some auction items that have been donated to this year's convention are: 3-piece gift set from Cooperstown Distillery (Bourbon, Vodka, & Whiskey), Buffalo Sports Weekend: NHL & NFL and most recently 4-pieces of Loren Hope jewelry which is pictured below. View our new PAC Silent Auction video to see all of the items that have been donated so far.

Page 11 of the brochure provides full details and a list of suggested donation items. Our website also contains full PAC Silent Auction details. There is still time to donate an item. so take advantage of this opportunity and donate a gift today! View the PAC Silent Auction form to submit an item.


Sponsorships & Booths-- Few Remaining!

There are only a few exhibitor booths and sponsorships left, but there is still time to demonstrate your support for community banking by becoming a sponsor or exhibitor at our Annual Convention! 

Sponsoring an event provides your company an opportunity to be recognized and enhances the visibility of your organization to attendees. Our Convention has various sponsorships available, including bronze silver, gold, and platinum sponsorships. Page 9 of our Convention brochure lists sponsorships available and what is included. For full detailed sponsorship information, visit the Sponsorship page on our website.

Our Convention Trade Show puts your company and its products/services at the forefront with consumers and potential business prospects, while also providing something that is unmatched in today's digital age: face-to-face interaction. IBANYS' exhibitor tradeshow begins Tuesday, September 25 at 5:30pm and concludes Thursday, September 27 at 11:00am. Exhibitor registration and tradeshow details can be found on page 10  of the brochure. For full, detailed exhibitor information including the exhibitor kit and booth floor plan, visit the Exhibitor page on our website. 

These two important opportunities give your organization a chance to both present your firm's products/services and show your support for community banking while networking with individuals who all value one common thing: the power of community banking.

Please take a moment to carefully review, and act soon to secure both your exhibitor booth location for the trade show and the event/activity you wish to sponsor.

Please note: Both will be assigned on a first come, first served basis.
As always, thank you for your support and participation, and we look forward to seeing you next week in Albany for the Convention!


Don't miss any Convention news. Follow us today!


New Feature!
Spotlight Bank of the Week

Spotlight Bank of the Week is a new feature that we have added to our website and e-newsletter. It is an opportunity to promote anything about your organization, such as fun facts, organization news, special events, etc. The Spotlight Bank of the Week will be featured on our homepage slider, e-newsletter, and our social media platforms for one week. So don't miss out on this exceptional opportunity to showcase your bank to thousands of people!

To apply, just fill out our registration form and email it to Natalie Rowan at

IBANYS Education/WebinarsWebinars
IBANYS Webinars

Are you participating in IBANYS' webinars? Your peers are! They provide timely, important information on subjects of interest to New York community bankers. They are valuable not only for their content, but for their convenience. Take part from the comfort and privacy of your office, without leaving the bank.  Our  Webinar Series  offers many topics in the following categories:
  • Audit & Accounting
  • Collections
  • Compliance
  • Directors
  • Frontline & New Accounts
  • Human Resources
  • Information Technology
  • IRA
  • Lending
  • Operations
  • Security & Fraud
  • Senior Management
We are always adding more programs based on needs and requests of our members,
who drive our focus!  Take a look at the various series of webinars we offer by clicking each of the links below.



What the New Law Means for Banks
Thanks to the newly signed regulatory relief bill, most reciprocal deposits are no longer brokered. This comes as banks face intense and increasing competition for deposits.

Join Us for a Webinar
Join Promontory Interfinancial Network-- the nation's leading provider and inventor of reciprocal deposit placement services-- for a free webinar that outlines key provisions of the new law and the impact ICS®, or Insured Cash Sweep®, and CDARS® can have on banks' balance sheets. The webinar will also cover how banks can use ICS and CDARS to capitalize on the opportunities at hand; presenters will discuss cost-effective ways to use the services to attract high-value relationships (even as deposit competition intensifies) and to lock-in more low-cost funding (even as interest rates continue to rise.) This webinar is a "must" for decision-makers at banks of all sizes, especially for community banks that utilize collateralized deposits and/or listing services.

Choose a date and time that works for you!


Presents a  Complimentary Recorded Webinar for
Our Valued Webinar Participants


GDPR is a hot topic! The General Data Protection Regulation is the European Union's new data protection and privacy regulation that became effective May 25, 2018. Although these EU rules were developed a continent away, don't underestimate how they might affect you.

Privacy is a fundamental human right under the EU Charter. GDPR is intended to protect EU residents' data privacy rights even outside the EU. Mandatory compliance may be closer than you think. A few states have introduced similar legislation and others are following suit. This free webinar will explain how to analyze when and how your institution will be affected by GDPR, and how it differs from your existing privacy rules.

Click the image below to access this complimentary webinar.

This free webinar is available until December 31, 2018.

View full information , including info about the presenters.

Government Relations

Last Week's Primaries Clarified November Choices

Last Thursday's primaries for statewide offices and state legislative seats produced the candidates for the November general election. The results:
  • Governor Cuomo easily defeated Cynthia Nixon in the Democratic  gubernatorial primary, and will square off against the Republican candidate, Dutchess County Executive Marc Molinaro, as well as minor party candidates..
  • Lt. Governor Kathy Hochul defeated her challenger, New York City Councilman Jumaane Williams. The GOP candidate for Lt. Governor is former Rye (Westchester County) deputy mayor and two-time state senate candidate Julie Killian
  • New York City Public Advocate Letitia James won the four-way primary for Attorney General, and will face Republican candidate, attorney Keith Wofford.
  • Six incumbent State Senators who were members of the former Independent Democratic Conference, which voted with Republicans to form a majority coalition the past few years, lost their primaries. (Several defeated IDC members have not conceded, and could continue on third party lines.) Losing IDC incumbents included:
    • Former IDC Leader and Co-Senate Leader Sen. Jeff Klein (Bronx/Westchester) lost to Alessandra Biaggi
    • Sen. David Valesky (Central NY) lost to Theresa May
    • Sen. Tony Avella (Queens) lost to John Liu
    • Sen. Jose Peralta lost to Jessica Ramos
    • Former Senate Banks Chair Jesse Hamilton (Brooklyn) lost to Zelnor Myrie
    • Sen. Marisol Alcantara (Manhattan) lost to Robert Jackson
    • Also, Non-IDC member but incumbent Democratic Senator Martin Dilan lost to Julia Salazar
Of the former IDC members, only former Senate Banks Chair  Diane  Savino (Brooklyn/Staten Island) and Sen. David Carlucci (Rockland County) won their primaries.  Sen. Simcha Felder (Brooklyn) who was not an IDC member but voted with Senate Republicans, also won his primary.  With control of the State Senate up for grabs in November, the demise of the IDC (which was officially ended as an entity last April) means there will almost certainly be a united Democratic conference in the 2019 session. Seven Democratic incumbents lost their primary bids last Thursday, while five Republicans are retiring -- an unnaturally large amount of churn for the 63-member chamber.

State DFS Sues OCC Over FinTech Firm National Charter

Maria Vullo, DFS Superintendent
In early September, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) gave conditional approval of a national charter application by a fintech firm. Now, the State Department of Financial Services has filed a new lawsuit challenging OCC's authority to do so. (A similar DFS lawsuit earlier this year was dismissed because the claim "was not ripe.")

Superintendent Maria Vullo, who will speak at IBANYS' Annual Convention next week in Albany, called the OCC's decision to allow fintech companies to obtain bank charters, "lawless, ill-conceived and destabilizing of financial markets."  The DFS complaint stated: "Financial centers like New York, which have developed comprehensive and well-functioning regulatory bodies, should not needlessly bear the harmful brunt of an overreaching federal agency."  T he Council of State Bank Supervisors (CSBS), which represents state regulators across the country, plans to pursue a similar lawsuit. 

2018 Is A Crucial Election Year-- Have You Contributed to NYSIBPAC?

This year's election may well be one of the most important in recent history for New York community banks. Control of the New York State Senate is very much up for grabs. Traditionally, the Senate -- under Republican control for most of the last half-century or more -- has provided a firewall for businesses, the financial services industry -- and particularly, for local independent community banks. 

Now, with five incumbent GOP senators not seeking reelection -- and predictions of a "blue wave" that could produce Democratic gains on both the national and state levels -- there could be significant changes ahead beginning in January 2019, both in Albany and Washington, D.C.

IBANYS' state political action committee, NYSIBPAC, works hard to determine candidates and incumbents for state offices, including the NYS Legislature, who understand the needs, priorities and challenges of New York's community banks. This is the year to make certain you support our efforts -- it could make all the difference going forward.  View our 2018 PAC brochure with suggested minimum contribution levels. 

Remember: You can also support our PAC Silent Auction at the Convention to further support NYSIBPAC. You can read how to do so in the  Convention section of the newsletter.

Washington, D.C.WashingtonGR

New York Community Banks: Join the Grassroots Efforts On
Fair Lending, BSA

IBANYS joins with ICBA in urging community bankers to continue advancing two grassroots campaigns using  ICBA's Be Heard grassroots resource center .
  • Disparate Impact: Tell the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to amend its fair lending disparate-impact rule to meet the limitations imposed by the U.S. Supreme Court. ICBA's custom message calls on HUD to align its rule with the high court decision.
  • Bank Secrecy Act: Community bankers can also use the resource center to call on Congress to introduce legislation that will streamline the BSA/AML framework and alleviate compliance burdens.
  • Rep. Chris Collins (R-27th CD) will remain on the ballot this November after his criminal defense attorneys expressed concern that more litigation stemming from the ballot substitution could complicate Collins' criminal case (he has been indicted on insider trading charges.) Collins refused to say whether he will resign or continue in Congress if he wins reelectionThe Democratic candidate is Nathan McMurray.
  • Richard Clarida was ceremonially sworn in as a member of the Federal Reserve Board of Governors and as Vice Chairman on Monday, Sept. 17. Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell presided.  Clarida was nominated to an unexpired term as a board member, ending Jan. 31, 2022, and a four-year term as vice chairman in April. He was confirmed to both positions by the Senate August 28.
  • The U.S. Senate recently confirmed Charles RettigPresident Trump's nominee to lead the Internal Revenue Service, by a vote of a 64-33. 
Industry Trends & Updates

ICBA's Romero Rainey: "Time To End Credit Union Tax Exemption

Rebeca Romero Rainey
A new op-ed in The American Banker by  ICBA President and CEO Rebeca Romero Rainey (who will speak at IBANYS' Annual Convention next week in Albany) states that cedit unions are feeling pressure from policymakers who are finally beginning to question whether their tax exemption is still justified. 

Romero Rainey noted that the cost of the tax exemption is on the rise, and projected to cost more than $10 billion through 2021.  "This annual subsidy comes in handy in a competitive financial services marketplace, particularly as the National Credit Union Administration continues finding new ways to increase the powers of the industry it is charged with regulating," Romero Rainey wrote. 

Who Would Bank At Amazon?

According to a report from consultant Bain & Company, about two-thirds of  Amazon  Prime members would try a free online bank account from the e-commerce giant.  That's considerably higher than the percentage of regular Amazon customers (43 percent) or non-Amazon customers (37 percent) who indicated they would do so. 

Almost 70 percent of those in the 18-to-34 age bracket would try the Amazon account, compared with about 50 percent of those 35 to 54 years old and under 40 percent of those older than 55. Last spring, it was reported that Amazon is in talks with banks, including J.P. Morgan Chase and Capital One, to create a checking-account-like product for its customers. Large U.S. lenders, including Chase and Citigroup, have announced or rolled out digital-only accounts targeting some of the same millennial customers that the Amazon product may appeal to.

Fed Survey: Small Businesses Prefer Community Banks As Credit Source

Community banks and community development financial institutions remain top-rated sources of credit for small-business borrowers, according to the latest survey from the 12 Federal Reserve Banks. According to the 2017 Small Business Credit Survey, community banks and CDFIs had net lender satisfaction scores of 73 percent and 76 percent, respectively. That compares with 49 percent for large banks and 35 percent for online lenders. 

The survey found an increase in applications to online lenders between 2015-17, from 20 percent. While borrowers said they were attracted to speedy credit decisions (70 percent) and a high chance of being funded (62 percent) by online lenders, they also reported high interest rates (52 percent) and unfavorable re-payment terms (33 percent). Meanwhile, community bank borrowers were least likely to report challenges with their lender.

Phishing Attacks on National Bank of Blacksburg Result In $2.4 Million Loss PhishingAttacks
by titanadmin | July 25, 2018 | Email Scams, Phishing & Email Spam

Cyber theft and identity theft are among the biggest challenges we face -- as an industry, and as individuals in society. Beginning today, and over the coming weeks, I will be sharing with you a series of articles on these issues.

The National Bank of Blacksburg in Virginia has discovered just how important it is to have effective controls in place to protect against phishing. The bank suffered two costly phishing attacks in the space of eight months that have resulted in losses exceeding $2.4 million.
Phishing is the leading tactic used by cybercriminals to gain access to login credentials, steal data, and install malware. Emails are sent to employees with malicious attachments, which if opened, result in the installation of malware. Alternatively, links are sent in emails that direct employees to fraudulent websites where they are fooled into disclosing their login credentials.

The first attack on Blacksburg Bank took place on May 28, 2016. Malware was installed on its systems which gave the attackers access to the STAR Network - The system that manages debit card ATM activity. After gaining access to the STAR Network, the hackers were able to change account balances, remove security measures such as anti-theft and anti-fraud protections, conduct keystroke logging, and authorize withdrawals from customers' accounts via ATMs.

In the two days that the hackers had access to the system, they were able to make withdrawals at hundreds of ATMs across the country and stole $569,648.24 from customers' accounts. This was possible without stealing customers cards or using skimmers to create fake bank cards.

The malware was detected on May 30, 2016 and the attack was investigated by the computer forensics firm Foregenix which determined that the malware was installed as a result of an employee being duped by a phishing email.

Eight months later, on January 7, 2017, a similar attack occurred which involved cybercriminals gaining access to the STAR Network. Similarly, access was possible for two days, although in this case approximately $1.8 million was withdrawn from customers' accounts. Verizon investigated the breach and concluded that access was gained as a result of an employee falling for a phishing scam.

The National Bank of Blacksburg holds an insurance policy against cyberattacks although its insurer, Everest National Insurance Company, has refused to cover the losses. Blacksburg is now suing its insurer for breach of contract.

What these incidents show is just how easy it is for major losses to be suffered as a result of employees falling for phishing scams and the importance of having robust anti-phishing measures in place.

There is no single solution that will provide total protection against phishing, although a good place to start is with an advanced spam filtering solution such as SpamTitan.
SpamTitan uses dual antivirus engines (Bitdefender and ClamAV) that provides superior protection against phishing and block emails containing malware and malware downloaders. The solution performs multiple checks on each incoming email to determine whether it is genuine, spam, or malicious, including standard checks of email headers, a Bayesian analysis on message content, and greylisting. 

Together, these controls ensure 99.97% of spam emails are detected and blocked, with a false positive rate of just 0.03%. Independent tests at Virus Bulletin have confirmed a 100% malware detection rate.

No anti-spam solution will block 100% of all spam and phishing emails so it is essential for employees to be trained how to recognize phishing emails. While it was once a best practice to provide annual training, with the volume of phishing emails now being sent and the increased sophistication of attacks, an annual training session is no longer sufficient.

Training needs to be ongoing, with regular training sessions scheduled throughout the year and employees conditioned through phishing simulation exercises. With effective spam filtering and employee security awareness training, the majority of phishing attempts can be thwarted.

   Learn Bond Basics with Your PeersBondAcademy

The Bond Academy, presented by ICBA Securities and Vining Sparks, is designed to provide community bankers with the basic knowledge needed to help plan and create effective investment portfolios. A high performance investment portfolio can provide a noticeable increase to your bank's bottom line. The learning objectives of Bond Academy are aimed at providing you with the tools to understand how debt instruments work and their overall role in complementing the entire balance sheet. This all new curriculum has been specifically designed to equip a new portfolio manager with basic portfolio management issues. Specifically, fundamentals of bond pricing, valuation, and selection will be covered extensively.  

Who should attend? CPAs and those new to their roles as investment officers, cashiers, controllers, and internal control professionals will benefit the most from Bond Academy. New directors serving on the investment or asset-liability committee will also find this course beneficial. No advance preparation is necessary. You'll learn the basics of the bank portfolio investment process. 

Dates: October 22-23, 2018  
Where: Embassy Suites of Memphis, TN

Members-$595, Non-members-$695

Room Cost:
*Save $150/session per additional registration from your bank*

CPE Credit:
Earn up to 12 hours of credit

You Will Learn:
  • Bond basics, including bond pricing, duration, and price volatility
  • Bond types, including agencies, municipals, mortgage securities, and floating rate instruments
  • The composition of a high performing portfolio
  • How to understand the rate market: yield curves, spreads, monetary policy
  • How economic data affects the bond market
  • The impact of interest rate risk on portfolio management
  • Portfolio strategies of laddering, barbells, riding the yield curve
  • Day-to-day portfolio management techniques
  • Evaluating investment portfolio performance

Seminar Schedule

Monday, October 22           8:00 AM - 5:00 PM        Bond Academy
                                          6:00 PM - 9:00 PM        Dinner provided

Tuesday, October 23          8:00 AM - 12:00 PM      Bond Academy
                                          12:00 PM                       Depart

Breakfast provided in the Atrium Café for those staying at Embassy Suites. Luncheon provided on Monday. Participants will receive a debit card for lunch on Tuesday.

Wall Street Update: 
Salaries Best Since 2008; Paid 20 Percent Of All State Taxes Collected

State Comptroller DiNapoli
According to a new report by State Comptroller DiNapoli, salaries on Wall Street rose last year to their highest level since the 2008 financial crisisThe average salary in New York City's securities industry in 2017 was $422,500, a 13 percent increase over 2016 and the highest since 2008.  "Wall Street has profited every year since the end of the recession in 2009, and compensation last year reached its highest point since the financial crisis. 

The industry is on track for another good year absent a major setback later in the year."  Nearly 200,000 people are employed in the securities industry in New York, more than any other state. T he industry and its workers paid $14 billion in taxes to state coffers - or nearly 20 percent of all state tax collections last year.

Builder Confidence Unchanged; Housing Starts Up

According to the National Association of Home Builders.Builders, confidence in the market for newly built single-family homes was unchanged in September. The Housing Market Index remained at a strong 67 on firm demand for housing, especially as millennials and other newcomers enter the market. The U.S. Commerce Department reported today that h
ousing starts rose 9.2 percent in August with much of the gain in the multi-family component that which was up 29.3 percent. (Single-family building, the largest share of the housing market, rose 1.9 percent.  Groundbreaking activity was flat in the Northeast. 

Meanwhile, total mortgage application volume was up 1.6 percent last week compared with the previous week, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association.  Refinance volume was up 4 percent, but was 39 percent lower than the same week one year ago when rates were nearly a full percentage point lower. Refinance share of mortgage activity represented 39 percent of total applications. (Mortgage applications to purchase a home were basically flat, but were 4 percent higher than one year ago.) The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with conforming loan balances rose to its highest level in more than seven years. 

Banking News

Further Your Education at Barret Graduate School of Banking BarretGradSchool

Barret and IBANYS are aligned with a common interest: to represent the interests of the industry through effective advocacy and high quality educational offerings.

Located in Memphis, TN, Barret Graduate School of Banking offers a comprehensive graduate learning program for professionals in the financial services field. IBANYS has established partnerships with key industry educators including the Barret Graduate School of Banking. The school provides community bankers with an opportunity for a graduate degree in banking. 

We are currently endorsed by ICBA, ICBA Securities, Arkansas Community Bankers, CBAofGA, Indiana Bankers Association, CBAofKS, MIBA, CBAofOH, CBAofWV - with a couple more on the way. 

To learn more about Barret Graduate School of Banking, please visit


Keep The Door Open For Your Small Business Customers

Excelsior Growth Fund (EGF) is NYBDC's nonprofit Community Development Financial Institution and IBANYS' exclusive online lending partner. Join the growing number of banks that work with EGF to offer their customers an affordable and responsible option when they do not qualify for traditional financing. EGF offers loans up to $500,000 with a convenient, digital process. Loans under $100,000 are disbursed within 5 business days.

 EGF's experienced team can work hand-in-hand with yours to develop a customized process to make referring seamless. To learn more about offering your customers a second look through EGF contact Bryan Doxford, SVP, at at at (212) 430-4512. 

Spotlight Bank of the WeekSpotlightBank

In 1996, two successful businessmen, E. Philip Saunders and Dan Gullace, purchased an established bank in Rochester, New York. They renamed it Genesee Regional Bank (GRB) with a vision of re-establishing a community bank presence, and helping to grow small business in the Rochester region. From this vision has emerged not only a successful financial institution, but one known for being a trusted advisor to its small business clients in a wide range of industries.      

Steady Growth

With that entrepreneurial spirit in mind, President and CEO Philip L. Pecora leads GRB with a customer-centric philosophy that sets the bank apart as a powerful advocate for its clients. GRB's original vision of growing local businesses has expanded to include helping individuals, nonprofits, and municipalities achieve their financial goals. The bank has continued on a consistent growth path, increasing its assets more than ten-fold since 2003.

The 2013 addition of three residential mortgage companies to the GRB team brought yet another critical service to the bank's customers and the local community. GRB's residential mortgage team has grown rapidly and GRB is now one of the leading mortgage lenders in the region. With assets now topping more than $550 million, GRB offers competitive products and rates -- but with the added benefit of hometown knowledge, service and decisions.
Recognition and Awards

The bank's growth is fueled by its commitment to the community and to its employees, earning the bank awards and recognition for growth, culture and community support including being named:
  • A Small Business Administration "Silver Award" lender
  • A "Greater Rochester Chamber of Commerce Top 100" company
  • One of the "Best Companies to Work for in New York"
  • One of Rochester's "Top Workplaces"
A New Chapter

GRB is launching an aggressive community-focused brand awareness campaign in September 2018 to encourage businesses and individuals to consider the benefits of working with a local, independent financial institution like GRB. 
Featuring reflections on the theme "Community Banking. Community Building." the integrated marketing campaign will include television, radio, and targeted digital advertising.  At launch, the campaign features GRB customers - Isaac Heating & Air Conditioning, Hybridge Dental Implants, Radio Social, Parkleigh and Dr. and 
Mrs. Michael Maloney. In their own words, these customers discuss the importance of receiving local support from GRB to achieve their personal financial goals and enable growth for their Rochester-based businesses. The campaign reinforces the bank's mission to provide products and services exclusively to the Greater Rochester region - working to keep us all, as the campaign concludes, "ROC" solid.

The commercials and extended interviews with each customer can be found at

Dan Morgenstern, founder of Radio Social and a GRB customer featured in the campaign said, "To bank with somebody that's outside of our community doesn't necessarily help our community.  What's critical for us is depositing our dollars into a bank like GRB that turns around and supports the local economy and local business.  Rochester can't grow if we don't have a community bank.  Because outside banks wouldn't have done what we needed for Radio Social.  GRB is unique.  They really understand and care about the success of the local market."

"Community banking is really about reinvesting into the Rochester community and really being focused on one market," said Frank LaMar, co-founder and CEO of Hybridge Dental Implants, a GRB customer and campaign feature. "I think having a bank like GRB whose focus is one market like Rochester, New York, is really much more profound to the business owners of that town compared to, frankly, what we've had in the past with large banks."

GRB has ambitious plans to continue its growth, and continue driving the success of businesses and individuals in the Greater Rochester community. Learn more at

IBANYS Spotlight Is On...

In July 2000, several leading regional accounting firms with tenures dating back to the 1960's merged to form a national professional services firm. Today, its hundreds of employees serve clients ranging from the dynamic middle-market to Fortune 500 companies. 

UHY Advisors is one of the top professional services firms in the US, and UHY International is one of the largest accounting networks in the world.  Financial services companies are facing a myriad of challenges in today's rapidly changing economic environment including increasing regulation, managing capital and liquidity, evolving competitive positioning, leveraging new technology, and determining how to achieve new levels of growth and sustainable profitability. Mitigating the impact these changes will have on your daily business - to say nothing of managing the additional risk to your organization requires the help of trusted advisors that understand the industry and provide personal, partner-level service to help overcome these challenges. 

UHY's National Financial Services Practice has assembled a team of seasoned professionals to cater to the needs of the financial services industry. They take a broad view of your business, and work with management to design strategically oriented solutions, combining traditional audit and tax services with information technology, operational analysis, risk management and other advisory services.  Through this integrated approach UHY delivers the deep knowledge and insight needed to help meet your biggest challenges and greatest opportunities. 


Howard Foote, Partner
Phone: (518) 449-3171

IBANYS Endorsed Services
IBANYS identifies offers products and services that provide value to your banks, companies, employees communities. These brief summaries provide links for information. Please contact IBANYS President John Witkowski with questions.

Health & Wellness

My Wellness Resource & TELADOC

The health and wellness landscape continues to evolve. "My Wellness Resource" can be a nice addition to your existing benefit package. 

Teladoc can save your banks time and money, and provide real value to your employees as this testimonial from a New York community bank CEO proves:
"I wanted to let you know that some of our employees and I have been using "Teladoc" and it is one of the best things we have done for the bank. We all love it: We are saving time, avoiding waiting in an urgent care center or a doctor's waiting room for non-emergency related illnesses . . .and it is easy to use and convenient. Once you use it, you are hooked! This was a great find! Would recommend it to all banks."

Mario Martinez 
Chairman & CEO
Catskill Hudson Bank

Contact Alan Justin: (716) 907-5500. 

"Cure the Blue" Helps Banking Industry Battle Prostate Cancer!

The "Cure the Blue" program sponsored by the Buffalo Bills Alumni Foundation allows New Yorkers to participate in one of the most comprehensive efforts to help promote prostate cancer awareness and research in the United States.  Lake Shore Savings Bank has provided prostate cancer literature and Cure the Blue information at all eleven of its branches and their headquarters in Dunkirk. The bank also offered Cure the Blue ceramic lapel ribbon pins for a $5.00 donations to Cure the Blue to all their customers. "We fully understand the severity of this disease and the devastating effect it can have on families" said Lake Shore Savings Bank President and CEO Dan Reininga. "Our support of the Buffalo Bills Alumni Foundation's "Cure the Blue" initiative is something that we are taking very seriously and are proud to support." Buffalo Bills Wall of Famer and Alumni Foundation President Booker Edgerson, a two time prostate cancer survivor, said the bank has been a tremendous longtime supporter, noting: "They have really stepped up to the plate with their unwavering support of our Cure the Blue initiative." 

IBANYS urges all of our member banks, associate members and allies to join the effort. Cure the Blue" raises funds and awareness regarding prostate cancer in New York State. Visit  to get involved! Of all new cancer cases in the nation, prostate cancer represents 9.6%. In 2017, there were an estimated 161,000 new cases, and more than 26,000 fatalities due to the disease. Support IBANYS' "Cure the Blue" campaign to help New Yorkers participate to promote prostate cancer awareness and research.

Secure, Enhanced Internet Presence

The .bank program by fTLD operates trusted, verified, more secure, easily-identifiable internet locations for financial companies and  customers. 

Did You Know?

. . .That when IBANYS was formed in 1974 as the only state trade association solely representing the interests of local community banks: 
  • The 30-year fixed rate mortgage rate was 9.59 percent 
  • The Dow Joines Industrial Average declined from from 797 in early August to 584 in early October
  • There were no 401k accounts. . .they weren't introduced until 1978
New York community banks play a key role in our state and local economies. Help spread the good news among our customers, business, elected leaders and the media!

John J. Witkowski
President & Chief Executive Officer

Stephen W. Rice
Director of Government Relations & Communications

Linda Gregware
Director of Administration & Membership Services

William Y. Crowell III
Legislative Counsel

Natalie Rowan
Marketing & Social Media Assistant