Giving and growing

May 6, 2024

Horizon Bank

With a history stretching back 151 years, Horizon Bank has long understood the importance of community. “We see ourselves as a local community bank,” said Tom Rowland, Horizon Bank’s market president of the north region. “We have all the programs of a big bank but with a small-town feel.”

A commitment to local involvement and a desire to get to know customers enhances that community feel. Lynette Goodin-Belknap, Fremont branch manager, grew up in Newaygo County. “We genuinely care about our customers,” she said. “We like getting to know them. Here they can come in and know we’re going to take care of them.”

Founded in Indiana in 1873, Horizon Bank expanded into Michigan in 2003 and now has branches as far north as Charlevoix. They have had a branch in Fremont for two years, and for two years they have made generous donations to the Newaygo County Economic Development Fund at the Community Foundation.

Supporting economic development felt like a natural fit for the bank. “We want to see businesses and the economy grow,” said Tom. “That goes hand-in-hand with banking. A healthy economy makes a community grow. Economic
growth and development is what we’re about.”

Making giving a priority is a point of pride for the bank but also for individual staff members.

“The people who work here are very proud of giving back to the community,” said Lynette. Last year on Veterans Day, the bank closed and staff chose local volunteer projects that everyone could participate in for the day.

“We want to give back to the community,” said Tom. “That’s why we give to organizations like the Community Foundation. It’s important to us because giving is in our blood.”