The rich history of Better Banks dates as far back as 1898. Over 113 years ago Dunlap Bank was founded in the small Village of Dunlap, Illinois. Having enjoyed a proud history, Dunlap Bank was one of the select rural banks in the country allowed to stay open in 1933 when President Roosevelt declared a "bank holiday" and temporarily closed nearly every bank in the U.S.
In 1957, B.F. "Chip" Backlund, a Senior Bank Examiner, joined Dunlap Bank as an Executive Vice President, became President in 1967 and later Chairman. Chip could see the ongoing need for locally owned community banks and organized the purchase of Wyoming Bank in 1967 and Bartonville Bank in 1970. Bartonville Bank, founded in 1918, and Wyoming Bank in 1935, enjoyed the same philosophy as Dunlap Bank - "serve the banking needs of their community". During his tenure as Chairman, Chip Backlund also served on the Board of Directors of the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago from 1986 to 1992. To this day, Chip Backlund is a leading spokesman for small community banking.
Steve Backlund, youngest son of Chip Backlund, joined Dunlap Bank in 1979. Steve was named Vice President of both Dunlap Bank and Bartonville Bank in 1981. In 2002, Steve became CEO and Chairman of Bartonville Bank. To offer enhanced services and products, and seeing the need for additional locations, Steve was instrumental in opening Bartonville Bank II in 1982 and Dunlap Bank II on North Knoxville in Peoria in 1990.
Due to the overlap in the Peoria market and common ownership, the leadership of Dunlap Bank and Bartonville Bank saw an excellent opportunity to maximize the strengths of both banks and in October of 2004, Dunlap Bank and Bartonville Bank combined to become Better Banks.
In September of 2006, Wyoming Bank merged into Better Banks and in June of 2011, Farmers State Bank of Astoria became the latest addition. While further strengthening the bank, these combinations allow Better Banks to offer their customers an enhanced line of products and services while providing them with additional locations and ATMs for added banking convenience. Providing exceptional customer service to current and future customers continues to be Chairman Steve Backlund's goal and vision. Furthermore, Better Banks is true to Chip Backlund's banking philosophy of over fifty years ago: "To remain a strong, locally owned community bank".
Better Banks is a part of Backlund Investment Co., a multi-bank holding company. Other community banks in the holding company are Glasford Bank - Glasford Illinois and State Street Bank and Trust Co. - Quincy, Illinois. The holding company also includes CFC, a full service insurance agency located in the Better Banks Knoxville office in Peoria.
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Better Banks 5600 SW ADAMS ST BARTONVILLE, IL