Photo provided by Tompkins VIST Bank

Tompkins VIST Bank celebrated the 110th anniversary of its founding by giving back to the community. During a ceremony last week at its branch in Leesport, the town where it began, the bank presented two $1,000 checks to the Schuylkill Valley Emergency Medical Services and the Schuylkill Valley Community Library.

“These organizations do so much for the community,” said Scott Gruber, president and CEO. “We’re still locally headquartered and offer local decision-making, but I think our founders would be most proud of the fact that we still care about our communities,” As part of the celebration, the bank also received a citation honoring the anniversary from State Representative Barry Jozwiak.

About 500 people attended the day-long event, which included displays of photos of the original branch, refreshments, caricatures of attendees, and other activities. Special guests included John Connelly, who was a former president of the bank.

Gruber said that the bank was formed by a group of residents who wanted to give area farmers and business people a place to deposit money and obtain loans. Today, it has grown to 19 offices throughout southeastern Pennsylvania, affiliate financial services, and online and mobile banking.

“Some people might wonder why the age of a bank is important, when there are so many new banks and online financial alternatives available,” Gruber said at the ceremony. “The answer is that being successful over a long period demonstrates continuity, commitment and the ability to change with the times,” he said. “We’re proud to have achieved that while keeping our focus on our communities.”