Teachers Put Arvest Bank Prize Money to Good Use in Classrooms

Wednesday, December 13 at 01:00 PM
Category: Arvest Community News

Arvest Banks recently awarded more than $15,000 to teachers throughout the state of Oklahoma, and the prizewinners in our Oklahoma City market already have plans to put their winnings to use in their classrooms. 

This marks the second year for the initiative in Oklahoma. The decision to award $500 gifts to individual teachers from a pool of more than 90 communities was made not only out of respect and appreciation for the work teachers do, but as a sign of support at a time when many school budgets across the state have been cut. 

“We know how important teachers are to our children, our communities, and our future,” said Brenda Gauntt, Arvest’s marketing manager in Oklahoma City. “We hope these awards will be recognized as a sign of how appreciative we are for all the hard work these teachers do for our children.” 

Here is a quick look at how the winners plan to use their winnings: 

  • Angela Braggs, Skyline Elementary, Stillwater: Games and materials to support our reading and math center.
  • Maryjane Burton, Choctaw High School, Choctaw: Purchasing new chairs for the performing arts center dressing rooms.
  • Hannah Hensley, Independence Elementary, Yukon: Materials for flexible seating for my classroom.
  • Jim Hudson, Mid-Del Technology Center, Midwest City: Four special tools used in the HVAC industry will be purchased for four students. There will be a monthly drawing and the individual holding the lucky ticket will get to choose their prize. Each student will have an opportunity to receive three tickets a day, based on meeting certain conditions.
  • Amber N. Neighbors, Central Junior High, Moore: Items such as floor pillows and low-standing tables. I also plan to purchase a few needed items like glue and colored pens. In addition, my classroom also has a library that I would like to update with a few new and popular titles such as April Henry and James Patterson books. 
  • Shelby Wagner, Frontier Elementary, Edmond: Purchasing items to help with flexible seating in my classroom, as well as materials for hands-on lessons and projects.
  • Sabra Wixson, Windsor Hills Elementary, Oklahoma City: Storage for station work, tools for arts infusion, technology opportunities, etc. I would also like to purchase a small laminator and laminating sheets for the classroom. 
  • Denise Andrews Wright, Truman Elementary, Norman: Items for hands-on Literacy and Math Centers, and stem bin materials to enhance the Science curriculum.
Tags: Oklahoma, Oklahoma City
 

Give Yourself the Gift of Identity Protection

Tuesday, December 12 at 02:00 PM
Category: Personal Finance

It may not show up on many shopping lists, but identity protection could be one of the biggest gifts consumers can give themselves this holiday season. 

That’s because, according to Javelin Strategy & Research, an estimated 15.4 million consumers were victims of some type of ID theft in 2016. That number is up from 13.1 million in 2015. 

Arvest Bank understands how much people enjoy the holiday season, but we also want to remind everyone that December is Identity Theft Prevention and Awareness Month. Arvest also wants consumers to know it is critical to know how to help protect themselves from identity thieves because of the long-lasting effects such an attack can have on their credit and bank accounts. 

With that in mind, here are some tips created by the Federal Trade Commission that can help consumers avoid identity theft. 

  • Lock your financial documents and records in a safe place at home, and lock your wallet or purse in a safe place at work.
  • Limit what you carry. When you go out, take only the identification, credit, and debit cards you need. Leave your Social Security card at home.
  • Before you share information at your workplace, a business, your child's school, or a doctor's office, ask why they need it, how they will safeguard it, and the consequences of not sharing.
  • Shred receipts, credit applications and offers, insurance forms, checks, bank statements, expired charge cards, and similar documents when you don’t need them any longer.
  • Take outgoing mail to post office collection boxes or the post office. Promptly remove mail that arrives in your mailbox. If you won’t be home for several days, request a vacation hold on your mail.
  • Before you dispose of a computer, get rid of all the personal information it stores. Use a wipe utility program to overwrite the entire hard drive.
  • Before you dispose of a mobile device, check your owner’s manual, the service provider’s website, or the device manufacturer’s website for information on how to delete information permanently, and how to save or transfer information to a new device.
  • Keep your browser secure. To guard your online transactions, use encryption software that scrambles information you send over the internet. A “lock” icon on the status bar of your internet browser means your information will be safe when it’s transmitted. Look for the lock before you send personal or financial information online.
  • Use strong passwords with your laptop, credit, bank, and other accounts. Be creative: think of a special phrase and use the first letter of each word as your password. Substitute numbers for some words or letters. For example, “I want to see the Pacific Ocean” could become 1W2CtPo.
  • If you post too much information about yourself via social media, an identity thief can find information about your life, use it to answer ‘challenge’ questions on your accounts, and get access to your money and personal information. Consider limiting access to your networking page to a small group of people. Never post your full name, Social Security number, address, phone number, or account numbers in publicly accessible sites.
  • Install anti-virus software, anti-spyware software, and a firewall. Set your preference to update these protections often.
  • Don’t open files, click on links, or download programs sent by strangers.
  • Before you send personal information over your laptop or smartphone on a public wireless network in a public place, see if your information will be protected. If you use an encrypted website, it protects only the information you send to and from that site. If you use a secure wireless network, all the information you send on that network is protected.
  • Don’t use an automatic login feature that saves your user name and password, and always log off when you’re finished. 

For more information on privacy and identity protection, visit www.ftc.gov* and look for the ‘Tips & Advice’ tab. If you’re interested in the kind of identity-theft protection that includes theft-resolution and file-monitoring services, Arvest offers IDProtect®* with some of its checking accounts. Identity monitoring services can alert you if someone tries to open an account or secure a loan in your name. To learn more about Arvest Bank and IDProtect®, visit www.arvest.com and select IDProtect® under the ‘Personal’ tab.

Links marked with * go to a third-party site not operated or endorsed by Arvest Bank, an FDIC-insured institution

Tags: Financial Education, IDProtect
 

Arvest Bank Announces Giles Hiring

Monday, December 11 at 02:00 PM
Category: Arvest News

Arvest Bank is pleased to announce the hiring of Justin Giles. 

Giles will serve as a client advisor for Arvest Wealth Management. As such, he will work with individuals, families and businesses to build, manage, protect and transition wealth. Leveraging the vast resources available, he will work with a team to provide customized solutions in the areas of investment management, insurance, trust and estate planning, and banking. 

An Accredited Asset Management Specialist®, Giles has 16 years of experience. He will be based out of the Arvest branch at 4140 S. Fremont. 

“I am excited that Justin has joined our team,” AWM regional manager Tracy Barnas said. “He has a track record of building long-term relationships using a client-centric approach to planning and offering solutions. I have great confidence that he will serve customers relentlessly and represent the Arvest culture well.” 

In addition to earning a finance degree at Missouri State University, Giles is a graduate of Merrill Lynch’s Practice Management Development program. 

Giles lives in Ozark, where he is active in numerous civic endeavors. He is a charter member of the Christian County Children’s Charities Sertoma Club, past board member for the Discovery Center of Springfield, and an active member and former board member of the Ozark Area Chamber of Commerce. 

About Arvest Bank

Arvest Bank, named by Forbes magazine as one of “America’s Best Large Employers” for 2017, operates more than 250 bank branches in Arkansas, Oklahoma, Missouri and Kansas through a group of 16 locally managed banks, each with its own board and management team. These banks serve customers in more than 120 communities, with extended weekday banking hours at many locations. Arvest also provides a wide range of banking services including loans, deposits, treasury management, credit cards, mortgage loans and mortgage servicing. Arvest is an Equal Housing Lender and Member FDIC. 

About Arvest Wealth Management

Arvest Wealth Management offers wealth management, trust services and insurance products. Investment products and services provided by Arvest Investments, Inc., doing business as Arvest Wealth Management, member FINRA/SIPC, an SEC registered investment adviser and a subsidiary of Arvest Bank. Insurance products are made available through Arvest Insurance, Inc., which is registered as an insurance agency. Insurance products are marketed through Arvest Insurance, Inc., but are underwritten by insurance companies. Investments and Insurance Products: Not FDIC Insured, May Lose Value and Not Guaranteed by the Bank. Trust services provided by Arvest Bank.

    

Tags: Associates, Springfield
 

Arvest in Greater Kansas City Welcomes John Edwards

Monday, December 11 at 02:00 PM
Category: Arvest News

Arvest is pleased to announce the addition of John Edwards, Mortgage Loan Officer to the Mortgage Team in Greater Kansas City.

John Edwards has dedicated over 15 years to the home-buying industry. He operates on the Arvest core values to strive for excellence and communicate openly. John takes pride in working hard for his customers, being readily available and keeping customers informed throughout every step of their loan process.

John is a Kansas City transplant from Wichita, Kansas. He is a University of Kansas graduate where he earned his Bachelors in Journalism. John later earned his Masters in Higher Education Administration from Emporia State University.

John and his family are active in the community by volunteering for area organizations such as Mission Southside, Kindcraft, Great Plains SPCA and Sunnyside Elementary. When he has downtime from getting customers in their dream home and volunteering throughout the community, he spends his spare time coaching youth soccer and baseball. John enjoys spending time with his wife while trying to keep up with their two children. John admits he loves to cheer on the Kansas Jayhawks (even football).

Welcome to Arvest, John!
 

Tags: Associates, Kansas City
 

Arvest Bank Announces Richards Hiring

Friday, December 08 at 03:00 PM
Category: Arvest News

Arvest Bank is pleased to announce the hiring of Nichoel Richards. 

Richards, who has more than 15 years of commercial lending experience, will serve as senior vice president and commercial relationship manager. As such, she primarily is charged with developing business relationships with wholesalers, manufacturers, distributors and service companies across a broad range of industries.

 Richards will be based at the Arvest branch at 6300 Nall Ave. in Mission, Kan., but will serve the entire metro area. 

“We look forward to combining Nichoel’s experience and credit expertise with the corporate culture and service model we embody at Arvest,” said Brian Lee, executive vice president and commercial loan manager. “She is a leader who has continually demonstrated the ability to uncover and serve the needs of her customers during her career. We’re thrilled to add her to our team of experienced commercial bankers.” 

Richards most recently worked as an executive director, relationship executive with JPMorgan Chase, where she assisted in helping build and expand the Kansas City region and won several national awards. She also spent 12 years at Wells Fargo, where she held numerous roles in collateral exam, credit and new business. 

Richards earned a degree in finance at Concordia University and has participated as a panelist for the Turnaround Management Association. She lives in Shawnee, Kan., with her husband, Tom, and their children.

About Arvest

Arvest Bank, named by Forbes magazine as one of “America’s Best Large Employers” for 2017, operates more than 250 bank branches in Arkansas, Oklahoma, Missouri and Kansas through a group of 16 locally managed banks, each with its own board and management team. These banks serve customers in more than 120 communities, with extended weekday banking hours at many locations. Arvest also provides a wide range of banking services including loans, deposits, treasury management, credit cards, mortgage loans and mortgage servicing. Arvest is an Equal Housing Lender and Member FDIC.

Tags: Associates, Kansas City

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