I am thankful.
I am grateful.
I am fortunate.
I am blessed.
And … I am optimistic. When I think back through all of 2021, I am hit by a wave of different emotions:
I am thankful to live in a community, where as a community banker, I am on the front line of making a positive difference every day – in so many ways – in the lives of those around me. I am thankful for the resilience of my own fellow citizens, and to lead an institution that can assist them to rebuild after a tornado and life-threatening storm.
I am grateful for being named Chairman of PACB’s Board of Directors for 2022, and for the opportunity to follow so many of the wise and astute past chairpersons who came before me. I am also grateful for the wisdom and knowledge that I have benefitted from in my years in community banking, which I can now embrace as I travel the Commonwealth and get the chance to meet so many of my peer members.
I remain fortunate to live in a country where each person can still chart their own success and destiny. Working within the community banking marketplace, I can join with so many other great bank leaders in moving forward that original principle of the Founding Fathers of “the pursuit of happiness.”
I am blessed to work with an Association that through its support – especially in those early days of finding innovative ways to process countless PPP loans – provided us all the chance to create a financial “lifeline” to our respective Main Street businesses, and which also developed a supportive relationship with the state secretary of banking and securities in carrying out that mission. I feel blessed to have a great team of bank professionals at my own institution, a group that has stood tall in facing many new challenges created by COVID and for having the adaptability to make needed adjustments, to best serve our customers.
Most of all, I am optimistic – now, as we turn the proverbial page, I look forward to what 2022 holds for us!
I see an Association focused on its priorities of genuinely helping keep community banks competitive, independent, strong and profitable. In reviewing 2022s strategic plan at our recent board meeting, I see a PACB that will deliver high-quality education, training and networking to all members, and new programs, as we continue to keep-up the momentum of our common successes. That has never been so important, as we begin a New Year still working through what seems to be a never-ending pandemic.
I hold the memories of my past year with many mixed emotions – but I do so with comfort, knowing there is a shared sense of strong enthusiasm amongst all of us, that 2022 will give us fresh opportunities for reaching even greater success!
Zacharia serves as Chairman of PACB Board of Directors for 2021-22. He was named President and CEO of Ambler Savings Bank in 2014 and is a certified public accountant with 20 years of banking, finance and accounting experience.