The Institute for Extraordinary Banking has awarded The Peoples Bank with the Money Smarts Banky Category Excellence Award for Financial Literacy Education.

The Peoples Bank has provided an array of financial services for decades in Pratt and its other facilities. The Institute for Extraordinary Banking has recently honored the bank with the Money Smarts Banky Category Excellence Award for Financial Literacy Education among all community banks in the United States.

"We are extremely humbled and pleased to receive this award," said Porter Loomis, President of The Peoples Bank. "It is especially gratifying to see the difference that innovation and effort by strongly committed individuals in our partnering organizations can make in our communities."

The Extraordinary Banking Award highlights the often overlooked role that community banks play in local economy, said Scott Smith, The Peoples Bank business development.

The Peoples Bank works with local community partners to share valuable banking information. The bank works with Pratt High School to produce their "Go Day" for seniors, a career day, mock interviews and classroom economic instruction, Smith said.

The bank works with Prairie Independent Living Resource Center to host a Disability Mentoring Day and a Job-a-thon.

Both The Peoples Bank and PILR work together to help Pratt Community College present a Student Advocacy Day where young adults are taught the importance of checking and savings accounts and establishing and maintaining good credit, Smith said.

Besides working with these community partners, the bank also provides a first time homebuyers seminar that includes helpful information including how to apply for a first time homebuyers grant. The bank helps the potential home buyers fill out the application. Tonya Huslig, bank loan officer presents the seminar.

This is very important for first time home buyers. It's a one evening event and provides important information the home buyer needs to know, said Monty Hostetler, The Peoples Bank chief financial officer.

"It's nice to be recognized for our efforts. It's a joint effort. We work with other entities in the process," Hostetler said.

Banks have to apply for this award. The submitted information includes the programs and institutions the bank works with in the community. Competition for the award is among other banks with similar assets amounts.

This is the second "Banky" award for The People's Bank. Last year they received a Banky for being one of the top outstanding community banks in the nation.

The bank provides banking, farm management, trust and investment services for five counties in central Kansas. The People's Bank has 50 people working at the Pratt locations, Hostetler said.

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