Centinel Bank was founded in Taos in 1969 with a mission to serve the financial needs of our community. Through the years, they have remained focused on serving Taos County. Centinel Bank remains Taos’ only locally owned and operated community bank, working with customers to help them realize their financial dreams, whether opening a business or purchasing a home. They also nurture our community by donating time and money to important causes, and contributing tax dollars that help maintain local municipalities.
“We remain dedicated to making a positive impact on our local communities, the people on our team, and the industry for which we care,” said Centinel Bank’s President and CEO, Angel Reyes. “I’m proud of the fact that we can continue to help businesses grow, are able to continue helping young people attend college through our scholarship and internship programs, and we can continue to shift and adapt with our community.”
Centinel Bank’s Community Scholarship Program for high school seniors in Taos County was started in the mid-1980s. Over the past five years alone, Centinel Bank has awarded over $220,000 to 59 students in Taos County to help them pay for their college tuition and books.
The Centinel Bank and UNM-Taos Internship and Scholarship Program creates a strong foundation for students pursuing a degree. It helps them gain exposure to a career and employment. Through the program, Centinel Bank provides scholarships and paid internship opportunities for selected UNM-Taos students who are studying in the areas of accounting, business, customer service or information technology.
Centinel Bank’s ability to respond to customers’ and employees’ needs through this pandemic is a success they credit to their commitment to remaining an independent community bank. They have made strategic decisions based on local community needs, as well as customer and employee safety. They made the decision early on to operate strictly through drive-through branches, by curbside appointments, and digital services such as online and mobile banking, email exchanges and video chats.
As they currently navigate the third phase of the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), Centinel Bank is helping new borrowers and second draws for existing PPP borrowers. In 2020, Centinel Bank processed more than 285 loans totaling just over $24.5 million under the Small Business Administration’s Paycheck Protection Program, to help local small businesses support payroll and related costs, saving approximately 3100 jobs within the Northern New Mexico region.
A major part of navigating the pandemic has been supporting the Centinel Bank family — the bank’s employees and the families that they go home to each day. Many of the bank’s employees have needed extra flexibility to care for their families. In Spring 2020, the bank set up a new space dedicated to Centinel Bank families needing to support their children with remote learning. Children can go to work with their parents and, from their own Centinel Bank workspace, can safely complete their school day right next to mom or dad. In addition, some individuals are working from home or are working flexible schedules to accommodate their needs.
“Creating and maintaining a healthy workplace has always been very important to us, but is even more so now,” said Leslie Mondragon Romero, the bank’s Organization Development Specialist. “Caring for our employees helps us to provide quality service to our customers and community. We appreciate our Centinel Bank family.”
“We prefer building relationships with people in person, face-to-face, whether at our offices or onsite with our customer’s,” said Reyes. “We look forward to the day we can interact with our customers in person again. We will continue to use technology to connect with our customers. We value and appreciate the convenience it provides to customers to bank from the comfort of home or wherever they choose. Thank you to our customers, employees, and community. We are honored and privileged to serve you and are committed to serving Taos County for many years to come.”
Centinel Bank is Member FDIC and an Equal Housing Lender. For information about any of Centinel Bank’s programs , employment opportunities, or a full history, see their website www.centinelbank.com.