GRBblog

Welcome to the GRBblog! Get to know GRB, Rochester's only locally owned and managed commercial bank. A commercial bank, but also a community bank, with an entrepreneurial spirit about everything we do. We're committed to Growing Rochester Business and making our community a better place to live and work.

The GRBblog is where we post bank news and information, stories about the great organizations we support, and share relevant local and national business news.


GRB Rolls Out 55,000+ Surcharge-Free ATMs, Just in Time for the Holidays

STAR and Allpoint logos stacked

Responding to rising ATM fees, Genesee Regional Bank (GRB) has partnered with the Allpoint and STAR® ATM networks to provide the bank’s debit card customers with more than 55,000 surcharge-free ATMs around the world.  The network includes ATMs located within premier retailers in the Rochester region including Wegmans, Speedway, Walgreens, Rite Aid, Sunoco, Costco, Target, Walmart, Sam’s Club and more.

A 2017 Bankrate.com survey found that ATM fees have risen for the 11th consecutive year, now averaging $4.69 nationally for out-of-network withdrawals.  Coupled with the fact that consumers will use an out-of-network ATM an average of at least 30 percent of the time when they withdrawal cash, ATM fees add up quickly for accountholders.  With the holiday shopping season set to kick off next week, GRB hopes its customers will see an immediate benefit in both convenience and cost savings.

“As a Rochester-based financial institution, we do not want our local customers to pay fees to access their money.  We already offer up to a $10 credit each month for any out-of-network ATM fees, but we think providing more options for surcharge-free ATMs creates an even better experience for our customers,” said Paul Keenan, Senior Vice President, Retail Banking Manager.  “Adding the Allpoint and STAR surcharge-free networks, which have ATMs located in many major retailers, provides considerably more convenience and will help lower costs for our customers as they do their holiday shopping – and on an ongoing basis.”


Congratulations to Winners of the Greece Small Business Awards Program

“Even the largest companies began as a small business.  Our support for this program highlights the importance of all businesses to our community,” said Pecora.  “It is vital that we support the development of our community and recognize the efforts of those who are contributing to its economic stability and growth.  Through this awards program, and the work they do every day, the Greece Regional Chamber of Commerce is providing a supportive framework to help business owners achieve success.”

If you want to know more about the Greece Regional Chamber of Commerce or the Greece community, check out the radio interview featuring chamber President and CEO Sarah Lentini on Entercom radio on our Facebook page:


GRB Moves Up on 2017 Top 100 List

Chamber 2017 Top100 logo

GRB is pleased to announce it has moved up 14 spots to #30 on the Rochester Chamber and KPMG “2017 Top 100” list.  GRB is the only bank on the Top 100.

To be eligible for the Rochester Chamber Top 100, businesses must be privately held, headquartered in the nine-county Rochester region, and have earned at least $1 million in revenue in each of the three most recent fiscal years. The Rochester Chamber Top 100 is computed based on revenue growth, taking into account both dollar and percentage growth.

We are also proud to note how many GRB customers and partners are on the Top 100.  The exciting new ideas brought to market by newer companies on the list and the consistent growth of those who have made the list numerous times since the Rochester Chamber started the program 31 years ago, is a testament to the strength and innovative spirit that characterizes our region.  Congratulations to everyone!

And finally, a tremendous thank you to all our employees.  Your commitment and dedication to serving our customers made this achievement possible.


“Focus on the Rochester Community” Topic of GRB Radio Interview

Photo of Community Relationship Manager Chris Kiley

We are pleased to share that GRB Community Relationship Manager Chris Kiley was recently a guest on the “Business Voice” radio show on WYSL and hosted by the Greece Regional Chamber of Commerce.

Kiley discussed GRB’s focus on serving the Greater Rochester community and the bank’s commitment to supporting and developing small businesses in the region.

In speaking with Greece Regional Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Sarah Lentini, Kiley emphasized the differences in working with GRB over larger banks.

“We’re 100 percent local, so our decision makers are in Rochester,” said Kiley.  “Our board of directors are local all businessmen so they can look at a business opportunity a little bit different than just as a banker – they can see the big picture.  We can be a little bit more flexible in our lending and how we structure a deal.”

If you missed the program, you can still catch the podcast on the Chamber’s YouTube podcast link.  Chris’ interview begins at the 50-minute mark.

To contact Chris in our Greece branch, go to our Personal Banking page.


GRB Co-founder and Entrepreneur E. Philip Saunders Honored by RIT

Phil Saunders photo

On Oct. 10, RIT’s Saunders College of Business honored local entrepreneur, philanthropist and GRB Co-founder E. Philip Saunders with a permanent wall display at the college to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the naming of the Saunders College of Business.  Mr. Saunders’ contributions to both the business community and to the community at large has been the cornerstone of his success.  As the president and CEO of Saunders Management Co., Mr. Saunders remains committed to enhancing the Rochester region.

In an article written by RIT and available at https://www.rit.edu/news/story.php?id=63918, Mr. Saunders explains the importance of his work with the Saunders College of Business:

Image of the Phil Saunders Wall at RIT

“Giving back to the community is an important thing to do for a person who has been successful.  In the last decade, Saunders College has increased enrollment, attracted quality faculty and achieved high rankings.”


Enroll Now, Buy a Home Next Summer with First Home Club

first home club program logo

Enroll now.  Save money.  Earn a $7,500 grant.  Buy a house in 10 months.  That’s First Home Club with GRB.

A home remains one of the best long-term investments you can make.  To make it easier for first-time buyers to purchase a home, GRB and the Federal Home Loan Bank of New York (FHLBNY) work together to provide down payment assistance through the First Home Club.

The First Home Club provides $4 in matching funds at closing for every $1 saved in a dedicated First Home Club Savings Account at GRB, up to a total grant amount of $7,500.  Participants make monthly deposits into this account over a 10-month period and then use that money when the obtain a mortgage with GRB.  And for a limited time, GRB is also offering a $50 gift card upon enrollment and $250 off mortgage closing costs.

The catch…we only receive a limited number of First Home Club enrollment spots each year, and we’re coming to the end of the year.  Our remaining spots will go fast, but there is still time to get enrolled.  GRB handles everything in house, so it takes less than 10 business days to get approved!

Buying a home is a significant investment, but GRB and the FHLBNY make it easier – and more cost effective – with First Home Club.

For more details on the program, see our First Home Club page.


GRB’s David Halladay Named to Bivona Board

Photo of David Halladay - GRB EVP and Chief Lending Officer
Bivona Child Advocacy Center logo with link

Congratulations to GRB’s Executive Vice President, Chief Lending Officer David Halladay on his recent appointment to the Bivona Child Advocacy Center’s Board of Directors.  Bivona’s mission is to deliver excellence in child abuse response, healing and prevention through collaborative service, awareness, education and leadership. Established in 2004, the organization has served more than 16,000 children in our community deal with the effects of physical and sexual abuse.

Congratulations, Dave!


Local Favorites Coming to the Village of Webster

Village bakery and jojo logos

We are pleased to congratulate The Village Bakery and Cafe, JoJo Bistro & Wine Bar, the Pittsford Farms Dairy & Bakery and ROC and Soul Fitness on their move to the Village of Webster on the northeast side of Main Street.

As the property owner of the largely retail space since 2014, GRB has been looking for the right mix of businesses for the stretch of shops, now known as North 43:  The Shops at Main Street.  It took time, but the wait has been worth it.  The renovated and reimagined space for these businesses (and others!) promises to be a great area for Webster residents to gather and enjoy a wide variety of delicious restaurants and other services.  North 43:  The Shops at Main Street is a great example of partnership, creativity and community.

We congratulate Charlie Fitzsimmons, owner of The Village Bakery and Cafe and JoJo Bistro and Wine Bar and visionary for this project, as well as the other businesses that will be adding great new destinations to the village scene.  Look for additional updates and photos as this project progresses…and find out details about the development in a recent Democrat & Chronicle article.


Information Regarding the Equifax Breach

Graphic representing a data breach

It has been widely reported that more than 143 million Americans may have had their personal information compromised in a breach reported by consumer credit reporting bureau Equifax.

Find out if you have been impacted

Because of Equifax’s role as a credit repository, nearly anyone could be at risk.  We recommend using the website established by Equifax to determine whether you may have been effected www.equifaxsecurity2017.com. Click on the “Potential Impact” button and follow the instructions for entering your last name and the last six digits of your social security number.  Equifax will notify you of your status.

Tips for protecting yourself

  • If you have been impacted, Equifax is offering a free year of identity theft protection and credit monitoring. There are also other services available for identity theft protection and credit monitoring that you may also want to consider.
  • Don’t forget to check the social security numbers of all members of your family who may have a credit history on file.
  • Keep monitoring your accounts for any suspicious activity and notifiy us immediately if you see something unfamiliar.
  • You may also want to add new alerts or tighten the parameters of the alerts on your accounts for added protection.

You can learn more directly from Equifax at https://www.equifaxsecurity2017.com/. You can also learn more by visiting the Federal Trade Commission’s web page on the breach at https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/blog/2017/09/equifax-data-breach-what-do. To learn more about how to protect yourself after a breach, visit https://www.identitytheft.gov/Info-Lost-or-Stolen.

Identity theft is a serious issue and we encourage all of our customers to take extra care at this time – and every day.  Please see our Security Resources page for more information.


Helping Hurricane Harvey Victims

Hurricane Harvey helping hands graphic

Although GRB is usually focused on helping those in the Rochester region, it’s impossible to ignore the misery that those in Houston and surrounding areas are feeling in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey.  Like many here in our area, GRB is ready to help.

We have already placed a donation with the local chapter of the American Red Cross earmarked for Hurricane Harvey relief efforts and our mortgage team is donating $25 on every application taken in the month of September to the Greater Houston Community Foundation.

We know that many of our friends and associates in the community are also helping out.  The Weather Channel has a list of recognized organizations that are currently assisting with relief efforts.  We also want to pass along a cautious reminder about responding to email requests for donations.  This week, the FTC issued an alert warning consumers to be on the lookout for scams and Krebs on Security reports that hundreds of new Web sites using “hurricane” and “harvey” have been registered in the last few days.

We know the recovery effort in Texas and the Gulf Coast will be long and difficult.  Today, we keep those who are struggling in our thoughts, say thank you for what we have, and take stock in being part of a community that reaches out to help those in need, wherever they are.