Montecito Bank and Trust Donates $1 Million

Montecito Bank and Trust Donates $1 Million title=
Montecito Bank and Trust Donates $1 Million
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Montecito Bank & Trust CEO Janet Garufis (Photo: UBGC)

By edhat staff

At their annual Community Dividends luncheon, Montecito Bank & Trust donated $1 Million to local nonprofits.

Hundreds of nonprofits, 188 to be exact, from Solvang to Westlake Village received varying amounts of financial contributions from the local bank chain. The luncheon event was held last week at the Coral Casino with nonprofit honorees and bank employees.

It began in 2003 by past chairman Michael Towbes with the idea of donating $1 million dollars to organizations that serve low and moderate-income individuals and families, as well as organizations that serve the arts, youth and education, social welfare, and medical and health services.

"We do this because we recognize and support the invaluable role nonprofits play in enhancing the quality of life for all segments of our society. We do this to encourage other organizations to follow in our footsteps. We do this to encourage our employees to volunteer to support these worthy organizations. We do this because we think it’s the right thing to do," Michael Towbes has said before his passing in 2017 at age 87.

Montecito Bank and Trust Chairwoman and CEO, Janet Garufis, announced a new addition this year to honor Towbes. The Michael Towbes Community Impact Grant was announced with a $100,000 donation to the Santa Barbara Rescue Mission. The nonprofit was founded in 1965 to help those homeless and addicted serving meals, providing safe shelter to 200 men and women each night, and graduating over 40 people from its 12-month Residential Recovery Program each year.

Other beneficiaries include the Santa Barbara Police Foundation, an organization that supports the Santa Barbara Police Department by raising community awareness and providing funds for equipment, counseling services and more. Habitat for Humanity, the Teacher's Fund, Angel's Foster Care, the United Boys & Girls Club, and many more were also recognized.

The full list of 2019 Community Dividends Recipients can be found here.

Rolf Geyling of the Santa Barbara Rescue Mission hugging MB&T CEO Janet Garufis (Photo: John Palminteri)
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a-1575324196 Dec 02, 2019 02:03 PM
Montecito Bank and Trust Donates $1 Million

Mr. Towbes truly left a "legacy". His passion for giving back was, and remain, community-based and unconditional. By understanding people, he was able to get the right players in place to carry on his work.

Luvaduck Dec 02, 2019 04:26 PM
Montecito Bank and Trust Donates $1 Million

Not to knock the donation, but where does the money that a bank donates come from? Isn't it from depositors who get artificially low interest rates, borrowers who pay more than they should or employees who get paid less than they deserve?

Factotum Dec 03, 2019 07:13 AM
Montecito Bank and Trust Donates $1 Million

People invest, take risks and work hard so they can make a profit .for themselves, while staying competitive in the marketplace. Earned profits are the owners reward and the owners property for carrying out a successful business plan. Which can be spent anyway that owner chooses to spend them. If workers are unhappy with low wages, they are free to work elsewhere. If investors are unhappy with low interest rates, they can take their deposits elsewhere too. This is a case if you did not earn these appropriate and market-friendly profits, you don't get to choose how to spend them. Towbes, and his surrogates, chose to spend honestly earned profits in the way they saw fit. Any depositors and employees can go elsewhere in protest. There is plenty of competition. Which keeps the Towbes group on its toes. Envy and resentment are very views. Healthy capitalism and reward for risks and investments remains the best model for everyone's well-being.

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