Senior Vice President
In her 20 years in banking, Lauren Blackburn has learned a thing or two from her customers. She has learned by listening to their experiences and, then, providing financial solutions. She even takes some of her own advice. She says, “Working with customers and learning about retirement options has taught me to be a better saver for my retirement.”
Not that Lauren plans to retire anytime soon. Instead, she’s just taken on a new role as assistant vice president for INB. She is our new treasury services manager. She began her banking career as a teller, quickly moving to a personal banker in 2000. She continued to take on new roles serving as a treasury management assistant, deposit product specialist and, most recently, as branch manager.
Lauren has worked in banking most of her adult life. “Being able to provide sound advice and expertise has made me very passionate about my career decision.” She says, “I love being part of customers’ lives.”
Lauren, NMLS# 806339, remembers a customer who came to the bank looking for financial advice. “He told me that he had some credit issues and wanted to discuss how he could make some improvements. He was simply looking for advice at that point. I told him how to work on everyday habits to improve his credit score. He left that day thanking me for taking the time with him. The customer came back about six months later saying that he did everything that I suggested and wanted to try to apply for a loan. We put on an application, and he was instantly approved. He was elated! Over the years, he not only was a personal client, but he became a business client as well with several business loans. His relationship has always left me feeling good about the financial expertise I gave.”
But some days aren’t all wine and roses. “I have handled some difficult family situations that are sometimes hard to resolve,” Lauren says. “Homelessness or financial hardships due to death of a loved one. Letting customers know that I understand what they are going through and provide support or resources for them to reach out to within the community are sometimes the best option for them at that time.”
Lauren is a 2008 graduate of the University of Illinois, Springfield; she holds a degree in business administration with an emphasis on finance. She also attended Lincoln Land Community College. She completed the American Institute of Banking’s program in commercial lending.
When not working, Lauren says she loves “to cook, golf, hike, volunteer and travel! I love seeing and doing things that I have never done before. Life is an adventure!”
Her volunteer work includes serving on the board of directors for Best Buddies International, a nonprofit dedicated to creating opportunities for one-to-one friendships, integrated employment and leadership development for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. For the last two years, she’s chaired the organization’s annual fundraising walks.
Of her new job at INB, Lauren says, “Honestly, I believe the sky’s the limit! I come with a lot of banking experience from a big bank. I am learning how a smaller bank operates, and INB really allows employees to see their daily contributions at work.”