Current News

Banking Conventions and Educational Events – June, 2014

With a service area stretching from the country’s Great Plains to the western states, Bankers’ Bank of the West participates in many conventions and educational activities involving community bankers – especially during the summer and fall. Those events include:

Arizona Bankers Association Convention
Sedona, Arizona — June 8-10
North Dakota and South Dakota Bankers Association Convention
Fargo, North Dakota – June 8-10
Wyoming Bankers Association Convention
Sheridan, Wyoming — June 15-17
Idaho, Oregon and Nevada Bankers Associations’ Convention
Sun Valley, Idaho — June 18-20
Utah and Montana Bankers Associations’ Convention
Sun Valley, Idaho — June 29-July 2
Bankers Foundation of Colorado Benefit Golf Tournament
U.S. Air Force Academy — July 11
ICBA-New Mexico Annual Meeting
Santa Ana Pueblo, New Mexico — Jul 24-26
Montana Independent Bankers Convention
Whitefish, Montana — July 31-August 2
Bankers’ Bank of the West Bank Card Conference
Black Hawk, Colorado — August 28-29
Independent Bankers of Colorado Convention
Vail, Colorado — September 18-20
Bankers Foundation of Colorado Benefit Event
Brighton, Colorado — October 3
Loan Officer Financial Management Training
Denver, Colorado — October 16 and 17

May 8, 2014
Please excuse the drywall dust: Renovations under way

The Denver office space occupied by Bankers’ Bank of the West since 1988 is undergoing a major three-phase renovation slated for completion during the third quarter.

The makeover will achieve a number of objectives. First, it will modernize and bring the offices into conformance with current building standards. Second, it will create more practical, efficient work spaces to accommodate both the people and the technology Bankers’ Bank of the West needs to serve its customers for at least the next decade. Third, it will allow some room for expansion, enabling the bank to flex with future demand for new services or need for additional staff.

The work is following a detailed plan that specifies which employees are to be temporarily located to available space in the same building, and for what period of time. Since early 2014, department managers have been working with their staff to make the short-term moves as smooth and orderly as possible. Their goal is to maintain a business-as-usual environment at all times.

“Our people hold themselves to high professional standards,” said Bankers’ Bank of the West EVP and CFO Alice Voss. “For the next three months or so, customers calling us might hear occasional construction activity in the background, but they’ll notice no change at all in BBW’s customer service and attention to detail.”

Topics selected for 2014 online training seriesMarch 24, 2014

WesPay and Bankers’ Bank of the West have chosen web-based courses to be scheduled exclusively for BBW’s customer banks starting in April.

The joint effort between BBW and WesPay, which acquired the ACH Regional Division of the Viewpointe® payments association early this year, is aimed at making effective job-specific training readily available to community banks. Many banks enjoy the convenience of training numerous employees at once—a solution that’s economical as well given that pricing for the webinars is based on the number of phone/Internet connections needed.

The 2014 webinars will be led by expert WesPay trainers; registrations and logistic preparations will be handled by BBW. The mix of courses to be offered in 2014 will give participants exposure to the payments system as a whole.

Course topics will be:

  • Payments Fraud
  • FFIEC and Corporate Takeover
  • 2014 New Rules Update
  • Essentials of Cards
  • ACH Policies and Procedures, Part 1
  • ACH Policies and Procedures, Part 2
  • Check Rules and Regulations
  • Check Returns and Adjustments

Complete information on these WesPay sessions—including course descriptions, session times, pricing and registration form —will soon be available to BBW customers. To learn more about the webinar training in the meantime, contact your cash management officer or email

Limiting exposure of the community bank directorate March 2014
Debbie L. Meyers, Senior Consultant
Bank Strategies LLC

The community bank director takes on significant responsibilities upon election to the community bank board. Given those responsibilities, the director would be exposed to various legal and personal liability should the director not fulfill these responsibilities with the duty and care expected of the position. In carrying out the significant responsibilities expected of the position, the directorate of a community bank must exercise sound and objective judgment and follow good governance practices given the special protection accorded the industry in the form of government insurance for bank deposits. Directors must be especially diligent to ensure they thoroughly review materials, request explanations to understand transactions for which they are unfamiliar or unclear, seek expertise or guidance as necessary for unusual transactions, and exercise their independent judgment. It is important that community banks orient new board members regarding the scope of their responsibilities and the extent of liability associated with their position by providing training. The community bank should also provide ongoing and periodic training for all directors to remind them of their responsibilities as well as keep them abreast of regulatory and industry changes. All regulatory agencies provide comprehensive director training programs, many of them online, which can be utilized for this purpose.

To evidence that actions and decisions of the board are considered with the duty and care of the position, a best practice is to prepare adequate documentation of the discussions and decisions of the directorate, both at the board level and in committee minutes, on all key matters facing the directorate. While the organization does not need to overly document all decisions, additional care should be taken to document any discussions regarding issues critical to bank operations and strategy. Those decisions and discussions warranting additional documentation should include, but not be limited to, those transactions associated with affiliates or insiders, actions which could raise potential questions regarding conflicts of interest, or those which could raise future concerns regarding if the transaction is in the best interest of the bank. Although directors and officers liability insurance provides protection under many circumstances, the coverage does not extend to acts of dishonesty and those that are criminal, conflicts of interest issues, or transactions that are undertaken for personal gain.

This is part of a series of articles providing suggestions for improving the performance and effectiveness of the directorates of community banks. It was posted by Bankers’ Bank of the West with the author’s permission.

About Bank Strategies LLC

Through a menu of strategic planning, profit improvement, corporate governance and other services, Bank Strategies, LLC has consistently demonstrated the ability to generate superior performance and profitability for its client banks while allowing them to continue to operate in a safe and sound manner. The firm’s professionals are well-known and respected in the community banking sphere of bank attorneys, bank certified public accountants, bank trade association executives, and the press due to their quality of service, expertise and knowledge, and bank reputation. More information about this bank consulting firm is available at

Training and education for operational staff remains a priority in 2014February 5, 2014

The importance of managing risk intelligently in the ACH payments environment is clear: Ongoing education of your entire operational team is essential.

As a partner to community banks, Bankers’ Bank of the West is working with WesPay—acquirer of the ACH Regional Association Division of the Viewpointe® payments association—to make web-based training both convenient and affordable to BBW’s customer banks. A roster of select courses will be developed and made available to customer banks during the second quarter. All of the classes will be led by WesPay, a leader in the area of field of electronic payments.

The joint effort between BBW and WesPay reflects a shared interest in extending the benefits of high-quality ACH-related training to front-line employees of community banks. For information on this educational effort, or to learn more about any cash management service Bankers’ Bank of the West provides, contact your cash management officer or email the Operations Department staff at