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Growing Forward with the Owners’ Dividend: Debbie

Perspective from Debbie, ESL personal banking member of 28 years (and counting)

Debbie has been an ESL member for 28 years. Her father was hired by Kodak in 1964 and was an ESL member from day one. When Debbie graduated from college and moved home, she did what her parents did—she joined ESL, too. And she’s stayed with ESL ever since, and for good reason.

Debbie’s first Owners Dividend wasn’t a lot, because as a recent college graduate at the time, she didn’t have a lot. But she remembers it coming right after Christmas, which is exactly what she needed to pay for gifts.

Debbie was so surprised and thrilled that a bank would even be able to do something like the Owners’ Dividend for its members. One of the things she appreciates most about ESL is that the team calls, emails, and checks in with her about her accounts, investments, and more.

Finances can be confusing, but ESL coaches her on where to keep her money—whether in investments, savings, retirements, or other accounts. Debbie recently worked with Jessica from the ESL Chili Office. “She was fantastic!” Debbie said. “We’re working on an investment, and it has me nervous, but she is counseling me. Every time I walk away from the branch, I feel better.”

“When I think about belonging, it’s important to human nature and ESL is doing it.”

As an educator, Debbie appreciates quotes and concepts by late American psychiatrist William Glasser, who talked about how humans are motivated: some through survival or freedom, and others through belonging, which makes her think of ESL.

“Belonging is one of our motivators for people. You want to be a member of something, and you want to ‘fit in’ and belong,” Debbie said.

Debbie’s with kids during the school year and always hears the phrase FOMO (fear of missing out). “With ESL, I’m not missing anything, because they are catching everything that can happen, and they are telling me how to earn more money, save more money, get the right information about my money.”

ESL supports Debbie’s daughter when needed, too. Their partnership puts her at ease. “When I think about belonging, it’s important to human nature and ESL is doing it.”

Debbie has recommended ESL to at least 50 people—friends and coworkers in the Rochester area. The proactive communications and benefits like the annual Owners’ Dividend are what keeps her and others going strong as ESL members. And for Debbie, it hasn’t been just 28 years. It’s 28 years … and counting.

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.