First Interstate Bank volunteer day

Brooke Kaufman, a teller at First Interstate Bank, pulls grass and weeds from the path along the Sculpture Trail with her coworkers during their annual Volunteer Day on Wednesday at that National Museum of Wildlife Art.

First Interstate gives back

Tellers, loan officers and other employees of First Interstate Bank left work early on Wednesday, closing their doors and heading out into the community to donate their time on an annual volunteer day for the company. Nationwide, more than 150 branches of the bank closed early to give more than 2,000 employees time to volunteer. Headquartered in Billings, Montana, First Interstate owns banks throughout Idaho, Montana, Oregon, South Dakota, Washington and Wyoming.

“Giving back to the places we call home is what makes us who we are,” First Interstate President and CEO Kevin Riley said. “Yes, we’re a full-service community bank, but more importantly, we’re a trusted community partner and neighbor. We are honored to celebrate the power of community with you on Volunteer Day, and every day.”

Meridian Trust starts merger

A small Nebraska credit union will become part of Meridian Trust Federal Credit Union by early next year.

Meridian Trust Federal Credit Union announced Monday the proposed merger with Nebraska-based Western Heritage Federal Credit Union, which has about $65 million in assets, 8,000 members and branches in Alliance and Scottsbluff, Nebraska.

Meridian Trust has $575 million in assets, nearly 32,000 members and branches in Wyoming, Colorado and Nebraska. The two credit unions will be merged under the Meridian Trust name.

According to a release, members and employees of both entities will benefit from economies of scale. No layoffs are expected.

“We look at this as an opportunity that will benefit the great members of both credit unions,” Meridian Trust CEO Kim Withers said. “Each organization has a strong passion for serving their existing and potential membership, providing local as well as world-class digital services.”

Meridian Trust was also recently named the Best Credit Union in Wyoming, according to Forbes.

BOJH president to retire

After eight years at the helm of Bank of Jackson Hole, President Jim Ryan plans to retire in April, according to a release from the bank.

Dawn Pruett, senior vice president of mortgage and commercial lending at Bank of Jackson Hole, will step up into the president role. A Wyoming native, Pruett has 22 years of banking experience and has been with Bank of Jackson Hole since 2015.

“We value Jim’s leadership and contributions to the banking community in Jackson Hole,” Bank of Jackson Hole CEO Pete Lawton said. “For the last 25 years, he has served in a variety of roles to develop staff, create opportunity, and assist our community with their dreams. He is leaving big shoes to fill.”

Ryan’s career started in Walnut Creek, California, as a construction lender and later as branch manager and business banker. During that time, Ryan attended Pacific Coast Banking School, a post-graduate level banking school. While at school, he met several Wyoming bankers and was given the opportunity to relocate to Jackson.

In 1997, he joined The Jackson State Bank and Trust as a lender. When Wells Fargo bought The Jackson State Bank and Trust in 2008, Ryan managed the business banking department for the Jackson, Star Valley, Pinedale, Victor and Driggs markets. In 2011, Ryan was promoted to market president for Wells Fargo in addition to managing the business banking for those markets. In August of 2013, Ryan accepted his current position as president at Bank of Jackson Hole.

Ryan plans to stay involved in his civic engagements and will be joining the Bank of Jackson Hole board of directors. “I look forward to a new role at Bank of Jackson Hole. This institution is an incredible asset to this community, and I feel fortunate I was able to finish my career with a local bank,” Ryan said.

Contact Johanna Love at 732-7071 or​

Editor in Chief Johanna Love has covered the Jackson Hole community as part of the News&Guide staff since 1998. She took the helm of the newsroom in 2017. She fields story tips and kudos as well as criticism and questions.

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