A couple of years ago I met John and Linda Burroughs at a mixer hosted by my friend, winemaker Ryan Beauregard. John was in the process of starting a new local bank: Lighthouse Bank. I was asked to come in and do some design work for them, and in the process of that I got to know many of the organizers behind the bank. It wasn’t long before I moved my business’s bank account over there.
I can’t believe I waited so long to start banking locally. It makes a big difference for me, as a business owner… but the difference is even greater for the community as a whole. Local banks support local businesses. In 1989, when our downtown was completely leveled by the Loma Prieta earthquake, the national banks were largely unwilling to lend to the local business owners who wanted to rebuild their businesses. It was local banks who stepped up to the plate a helped bring our downtown back to life. Without them, it’s likely we’d still have craters in the ground downtown, and landmark businesses like Sockshop and Shoe Co & Bookshop Santa Cruz would likely be gone.
The impact is broader, however. I don’t need to go into causes behind the current recession here– most of us know that the big banks had a lot to do with it. But it goes beyond that. Check out the video below, by local film maker Kyle Thiermann.
Changing where you bank might be the most simple and effective way to support your community and stop destructive projects all at the same time! Surfer, Kyle Thiermann shows you how your money gets used to create the world you live in by taking you on a trip to Chile.