The Wisconsin Bankers Association’s (WBA) mission is to promote a healthy environment for banks in Wisconsin that, in turn, focus on helping their local communities. Ensuring that a broad mix of individuals with a variety of ideas, differing viewpoints, thought processes, backgrounds, and experiences play a meaningful role in all aspects of the banking industry is critical to the success of WBA and its members. Embracing differences and promoting equity is at the foundation of WBA as an employer and as a trade association.
Similar to the banking industry we serve, WBA understands that in order to more fully accomplish our mission, and live our values, we must leverage the diverse backgrounds, skills, knowledge, and perspectives of our members, Board of Directors, vendors, and employees. WBA is passionate about fostering a culture for members and employees where everyone feels welcome, included, empowered and valued. This includes attracting and retaining a diverse workforce, and encouraging our staff to promote diversity, equity, and inclusion in all internal teams and across external relationships and services.
Below are a variety of resources that banks can utilize in their efforts surrounding diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI). These resources have been curated by WBA and our DEI Advisory Group of members. To find out more, please contact one of the DEI Advisory Group’s WBA staff liaisons: Rose Oswald Poels, president and CEO; Lori Kalscheuer, director of education; or Cassandra Krause, communications manager.
Get Involved with the WBA Connect DEI Peer Group
WBA Connect is a collection of peer communities, designed to be a safe space to keep bankers connected and help one another grow. Membership in the WBA Connect DEI group comes with access to the group’s exclusive online peer-to-peer listserv, andfour peer connection meetings per year.
Download a DEI Sample Policy For Banks
A customizable DEI Sample Policy is available for banks to use when implementing and/or revising their institution’s policy. The sample policy is designed to serve as a template or a discussion prompt to help banks develop and maintain policies that fit their organization’s specific mission, values, strategy, and policies.
WBA’s DEI Statement
View WBA’s statement on DEI above as an integral part of our mission and service to our members.
Diverse Voices in Banking
WBA’s Diverse Voices in Banking video series celebrates and helps viewers get to know bankers across Wisconsin from a wide variety of backgrounds. In the interviews, WBA President and CEO Rose Oswald Poels speaks with bankers about their careers and perspectives on the banking industry.
Resources from the American Bankers Association
For more DEI resources from one of WBA’s national partners, please visit ABA’s website.
Financial Inclusion Resources
Bank On Greater Milwaukee is a collaboration between financial institutions, community-based organizations, and local government to ensure that all residents have the opportunity to be financially healthy. Together, we are working to connect people to safe, affordable, and certified banking accounts. Many Wisconsin banks already offer products that would qualify for certification or could qualify with small changes. Find out more and get certified.
Wisconsin Saves encourages automatic savings by splitting payroll deposits into two separate accounts (one for saving, one for spending). When employers sign up to provide this employee benefit, they receive a toolkit to help them communicate about the program and its advantages to employees.
BankWork$® is Employ Milwaukee’s occupational skill development program, which provides eight weeks of retail banking career training. Banks can sign up to become an employer partner to be connected to talented candidates for positions including bank teller, customer service representative, relationship banker, and personal banker.
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