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Growing Forward with the Owners’ Dividend: Bow Morse

Q&A with WM B Morse Lumber’s Sales Manager Bow Morse

WM B Morse Lumber is a fifth-generation local business leading the way with innovations in the wood products industry. In 2013, the local business turned to ESL Federal Credit Union for its business banking needs. We connected with Morse Lumber Sales Manager Bow Morse to get his insights on the ESL Owners’ Dividend program.

Fun fact: We talked to Bow right after he put his 13-month-old son (The soon-to-be sixth generation of WM B Morse Lumber!) to sleep for the night. Will he sleep through this whole interview? Find out at the end!

How long has your company banked with ESL Federal Credit Union?

Morse Lumber was banking with another bank for many years, and when I graduated from college and my position at the company was changing, we were switching to ESL. Truthfully, ESL is really all I know. I’ve heard a lot about other banks, but I know ESL the best.

What is it about the Owners’ Dividend that you and your team appreciate?

We appreciate the Owners’ Dividend—and reinvest it back into our company and people—but the dollars aren’t even what’s most important. It’s what is represents: ESL is running a profitable company, and they’re able to share what it’s like when you’re running on all cylinders. For us, it’s the respect, honesty, and integrity of the company that we appreciate the most. It shows me ESL is a good company run by good people.

Bow Morse

ESL and Morse Lumber are two local companies. What synergies have you felt there?

Our team goes out and deals with people who need something or want something, and we listen and try to provide this the best way possible. Instead of being a statistic, there are people who come to meetings and sit down with you and hear what’s going well and what’s not going well.

This is exactly what ESL has done with us. I’ve always respected and admired ESL. They care about us, our mission, and the people who work here. We work with Elaine Lyons, and we have a lot in common—she’s lived and worked in Rochester for many years—and I know her personally and professionally.

ESL believes strongly in “belonging to something bigger.” What does this mean to you?

Having people who are making decisions locally—in Rochester—is so much better for us than banking decisions made in a big office outside of Rochester.

We work so hard to take care of our customers, and ESL is the same for us. They’ve listened to us, sat down with us, spent hours with us, and understand why we need the money we do for the things we need to do. It’s been nothing but a strong partnership for us.

If a leader at ESL is reading this Q&A, what do you want them to know?

The fact that ESL is talking to its members—talking to the people it does business with in the community—thank you! Thank you for sticking to your roots and keeping this about the people and our community, and for making decisions here in Rochester. We don’t bank with ESL because of the Owners’ Dividend, but we do appreciate it!

Note: Bow’s son slept through this entire interview!

Learn how an annual dividend payout has grown to become so much more >

The individual Owners’ Dividend payout amounts ESL members receive are based on established Owners’ Dividend criteria. For more information about the criteria, please visit Qualification for the Owners’ Dividend is subject to eligibility requirements and payment of the Owners’ Dividend is not guaranteed.