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    The idea for Tri City National Bank started in 1955 when Dave Ulrich was denied a small business loan. Ulrich’s goal became to establish “a bank that cares about all customers.” The family-operated Tri City Foods was founded in 1959, where Ulrich’s wife, Agatha, would bake hams at their house and bring them to the store for Dave to sell.

    Dave Ulrich opened his first Tri City National Bank in 1963 on the corner of Oak Creek’s 27th and College Avenue. The bank surpassed $100 million in assets for its first time in 1983, with a groundbreaking year of firsts six years later. In 1989, Ulrich was the first to place a bank inside a Wisconsin grocery store. That same year, Tri City National Bank formed a 30+ year partnership with Milwaukee County Zoo, and the 10th Tri City National Bank location opened in Brookfield.

    Ulrich started the 1990s by donating $250,000 to an Oak Creek Community Center before ending the decade (1998) with over $500 million in assets. Ulrich didn’t have the chance to see his bank grow into the 2000s with his death in 1998. However, the bank would continue to thrive, celebrating over $1 billion in assets in 2009 and its 50th anniversary in 2013.

    Montreal Bank was Canada’s first bank, opening in 1817. Montreal Bank would be a central factor for constructing Canada, its financial organizations, and the success of its citizens. Nine men, some of Montreal’s elite and Canada’s “most enterprising merchants and aspiring financiers,” signed the original Articles of Association founding the Bank of Montreal.

    The bank would open the first Canadian railway in 1837. Despite a short length of 16 miles, the railway connected Montreal to New York and played a pivotal role in the country’s business feats. Montreal Bank would fund Canada’s first telegraph service in 1847, allowing communications across all of Canada.

    Today, BMO Harris is North America’s eighth biggest bank by assets, $988 billion to be exact. BMO serves over 12 million people worldwide, 8 million in Canada, and over 2 million in the United States. The “engaged and diverse team of employees” has allowed the bank to flourish and grow for 205 years.

    Samuel C. Johnson was the fourth-generation leader of SC Johnson, one of the world’s most prosperous privately owned businesses. In 1970, S.C. Johnson IV recognized the need for a different kind of bank. Johnson Financial Group is established on his “vision of unmatched personal service and a commitment to our communities.”

    S.C. Johnson IV died in 2004, when his daughter, Helen Johnson-Leipold, became Chairman of Johnson Financial Group. As the fifth generation to direct the company, Johnson-Leipold is greatly influenced by her father’s inspirational legacy. Her greatest lesson was learning the “balance of tradition and change. Every generation has to bring something new to the enterprise. Knowing what to change and what not to change is key.”

    Presently, the company has $15 billion in assets and donates $2 million to charity each year. Johnson Financial Group is guided by Helen Johnson-Leipold and President and CEO Jim Popp. Together, “the company has sustained continued growth and profitability.” Learn more about Johnson Financial Group’s leadership, community involvement, and career opportunities.

    U.S. Bank, originally First National Bank of Cincinnati, was established during the Abraham Lincoln administration by national bank charter No. 24 on July 13, 1863. Continuing to function by the charter, “The capital of a bank should be a reality, not a fiction … Let no loans be made that are not secured beyond a reasonable contingency … Pursue a straightforward, upright banking business” First National Bank of Minneapolis was instituted in 1864.

    With over 11,000 employees in the Twin Cities metropolitan area, the bank is headquartered in the Minneapolis U.S. Bancorp Center. In 1933, banks were allowed to restrict customer withdrawal amounts due to the Great Depression. Unlike many banks, First National Bank of Cincinnati did not limit its customers’ withdrawals.

    Presently, U.S. Bank is one of “the highest-rated banks in the world.” Following George Floyd’s death in June 2020, U.S. Bank gave “$100 million in annual capital and $16 million in grants to Black-owned or -led businesses, housing and workforce advancement, and committed to doubling Black suppliers.” During the Paycheck Protection Program of 2021, 90% of the businesses served had less than 20 employees.

    A group of local teachers founded The North Shore Building & Loan Association in the backroom of Perkins Hardware Store in 1923. The association started with $22,000 in assets, and the branch network grew throughout the 1970s. The first branch opened in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, in 1972.

    As the bank merged and acquired several banks, The North Shore Building & Loan Association spread to Green Bay and Racine. The North Shore Building & Loan Association became North Shore Bank in 1989 and had 33 locations by 1998, marking the bank’s 75th anniversary. North Shore Bank didn’t stop there, opening branches in Kenosha, the Fox Valley, Union Grove, Ozaukee County, and Milwaukee metropolitan area.

    Today, North Shore Bank has more than $2.5 billion in assets and 45 offices in eastern Wisconsin and northern Illinois. For more than 95 years, North Shore’s almost 500 employees have proven their customer dedication “by providing personalized service both in-person and from anywhere in the world.” Learn how North Shore Bank can help you invest, retire, and about their community impact.

    In 1991, Ed Wehmer, one of Wintrust’s creators and current CEO, had the idea “to provide an alternative to the big banks.” Over the last 30+ years, the suburban storefront of the north Chicago area has grown to 175 locations and hasn’t lost touch with its founding principle.

    As your friends and neighbors, the Wintrust Community Bank family believes “there’s a need, and a desire, for a true community bank: where tellers know their customers by name; bankers frequent local businesses; and the bank invests in the neighborhood it calls home.” Town Bank was “built in this area, for this area.” The staff strives “to be an asset to the people and communities we serve.” By getting to know their customers personally, they can fully understand their needs to provide “the best banking products and even better service.” Learn more about the Wintrust Credit Academy, summer internships, and career opportunities.

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    About Belle City Square

    Introducing Belle City Square, the historic home of the Horlick Malted Milk Factory beautifully reimagined for today’s apartment dweller. Get in on Great Lakes living at its finest AND most affordable – right here in Racine.


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