Saturday, January 20 , 2018, 9:17 pm | Fair 52º



Montecito Bank & Trust Doles Out $1 Million at Community Dividends Awards Luncheon

Tradition of philanthropy benefits 159 regional organizations with a call for continued support of the work of nonprofits

When Janet Garufis joined the Montecito Bank & Trust team, she said she wanted to work somewhere where she could made a difference, and Michael Towbes taught her how.

“There’s no better way to encourage philanthropy than to model the way, and Mr. Towbes, you continue to do that for each and every one of us today,” Garufis said at Monday’s ninth annual Community Dividends awards luncheon.

Montecito Bank & Trust doled out $1 million to 159 nonprofit organizations at the luncheon held at the Four Seasons Resort The Biltmore Santa Barbara. Before handing out checks, Garufis said she felt privileged to learn how to give from a man who continues to perfect the art of philanthropy.

Through the life of the program, the bank has distributed $9 million in a region stretching from the Santa Ynez Valley to Westlake Village. While the bank received about 300 applications, officials said several organizations asked to be skipped this year so other groups could receive funding.

“Sometimes a few thousand dollars makes a huge difference in the budget of these organizations,” Towbes, Montecito Bank & Trust’s board chairman, said as the audience dined on a Thanksgiving-themed lunch. “We hope it sparks other donations for them as well. This is not the time to cut back support for nonprofits.”

One of the recipients included the Scholarship Foundation of Santa Barbara, which has given students scholarships provided by generous donors since 1962.

“This means that more students will be able to get scholarships because of their generosity,” Executive Director Colette Hadley said. “The bank supports so many types of nonprofits, but I know education has been a priority,” referring to the bank’s financial literacy program it teaches in local high schools. 

Montecito Bank & Trust can award nonprofit organizations with money that would have been paid out in taxes under its Subchapter S status. Under the status, the bank’s earnings are no longer subject to a double corporate tax.

Anais Borg-Marks of the Anti-Defamation League said she was impressed by the wide range of organizations the bank honored. Partners in Education Executive Director Ben Romo agreed.

“In the corporate world,” he said, “Montecito Bank & Trust leads the way in terms of philanthropy.”


» Adventures in Caring Foundation
» AHA! (Academy of Healing Arts for Teens)
» Alano Club of Santa Barbara, Inc.
» Alliance for the Arts
» Alzheimer’s Association, California Central Coast Chapter
» American Heart Association of Santa Barbara County
» American Red Cross, Santa Barbara County Chapter
» Angel’s Foster Care of Santa Barbara
» Anti-Defamation League
» Arthritis Foundation
» Atterdag Village of Solvang
» Bishop Garcia Diego High School
» Boys & Girls Club of Moorpark
» Boys & Girls Clubs of Ventura
» Boys & Girls Club of Santa Barbara
» Breast Cancer Resource Center of Santa Barbara
» California Lutheran University
» California State University Channel Islands Foundation
» Cancer Center of Santa Barbara
» Carpinteria Beautiful
» Carpinteria Education Foundation, Inc.
» Casa Pacifica Centers for Children and Families
» Casa Serena, Inc.
» Catholic Charities
» Center Stage Theater
» Children’s Museum of Santa Barbara
» Coastal Housing Coalition
» Community Arts Music Association of Santa Barbara, Inc.
» Community Conscience / Under One Roof
» Community Counseling and Education Center
» Community Environmental Council, Inc.
» Community Memorial Health System
» Conejo Valley Senior Concerns, Inc.
» Congregation B’nai B’rith
» Cornerstone House of Santa Barbara
» Council on Alcoholism & Drug Abuse
» Court Appointed Special Advocates of Santa Barbara County
» Crane Country Day School
» Direct Relief International
» Domestic Violence Solutions for Santa Barbara County
» Dos Pueblos Engineering Academy Foundation
» Dream Foundation
» Easy Lift Transportation, Inc.
» Elings Park
» Elverhoj Museum of History & Art
» Ensemble Theatre Company of Santa Barbara
» Fielding Graduate University
» FOOD Share
» Foodbank of Santa Barbara County
» Friends of the Carpinteria Library
» Friends of the Library of the Santa Ynez Valley, Inc.
» Friendship Adult Day Care Center, Inc.
» Friendship Manor
» Ganna Walska Lotusland Foundation
» Garden Court, Inc.
» Girl Scouts of California’s Central Coast
» Girls Incorporated of Carpinteria
» Girls Incorporated of Greater Santa Barbara
» Goleta Valley Cottage Hospital Foundation
» Goleta Valley Historical Society
» Habitat for Humanity of Southern Santa Barbara County
» Habitat for Humanity of Ventura County
» HomeShare of Ventura
» Hospice of Santa Barbara, Inc.
» Hospice of the Conejo
» Housing Trust Fund of Santa Barbara County, Inc.
» Interface Children & Family Services
» Isla Vista Youth Projects, Inc.
» Jewish Federation of Greater Santa Barbara
» Jewish Film Festival
» Kids Helping Kids
» La Casa de Maria Retreat & Conference Center
» Laguna Blanca School
» Laguna Cottages for Seniors
» Legal Aid Foundation of Santa Barbara County
» Lobero Theatre Foundation
» Marjorie Luke Theatre
» Museum of Ventura County
» Music Academy of the West
» NAWBO-SB Foundation
» New Beginnings Counseling Center
» Notes for Notes
» Old Spanish Days
» Opera Santa Barbara
» Pacific Pride Foundation Inc.
» Page Youth Center
» Parks and Recreation Community Foundation
» PathPoint
» Peoples’ Self-Help Housing Corporation
» Planned Parenthood of Santa Barbara, Ventura and San Luis Obispo Counties, Inc.
» Providence Hall
» San Marcos Parent Child Workshop
» Sansum Clinic
» Sansum Diabetes Research Institute
» Santa Barbara Birth Center
» Santa Barbara Botanic Garden, Inc.
» Santa Barbara Bowl Foundation
» Santa Barbara Center for the Performing Arts, Inc.
» Santa Barbara Chamber Orchestra
» Santa Barbara Channelkeeper
» Santa Barbara Community Housing Corporation
» Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital Foundation
» Santa Barbara County Genealogical Society
» Santa Barbara Education Foundation
» Santa Barbara Family Care Center
» Santa Barbara Family YMCA
» Santa Barbara Historical Museum
» Santa Barbara International Film Festival
» Santa Barbara Maritime Museum
» Santa Barbara Meals on Wheels, Inc.
» Santa Barbara Museum of Art
» Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History
» Santa Barbara Neighborhood Clinics
» Santa Barbara Partners in Education
» Santa Barbara Police Activities League
» Santa Barbara Rape Crisis Center
» Santa Barbara Rescue Mission
» Santa Barbara Revels
» Santa Barbara Soccer Club
» Santa Barbara Symphony
» Santa Barbara Trust for Historic Preservation
» Santa Barbara Village
» Santa Barbara Zoological Foundation
» Santa Ynez Valley Cottage Hospital Foundation
» Santa Ynez Valley People Helping People, Inc.
» Sarah House
» Scholarship Foundation of Santa Barbara
» Segue Career Mentors
» Solvang Friendship House
» Solvang Senior Center
» Special Olympics Santa Barbara
» St. Vincent’s
» State Street Ballet
» Storyteller Children’s Center
» Teddy Bear Cancer Foundation
» Foundation for Girsh Park
» Foundation for Santa Barbara City College
» Howard School
» The Little Cottage
» Transition House
» Triad Properties
» Turning Point Foundation
» United Boys & Girls Club of Goleta
» United Boys & Girls Club of Santa Barbara West Clubhouse
» United Boys & Girls Club of Carpinteria
» United Way of Santa Barbara County
» United Way of Ventura County
» Unity Shoppe, Inc.
» Valley Haven, Inc.
» Ventura County Community Foundation
» Ventura County Housing Trust Fund
» Ventura County Medical Resource Foundation
» Ventura Music Festival
» Visiting Nurse & Hospice Care of Santa Barbara
» Westmont College
» Wilderness Youth Project
» Women’s Economic Ventures
» YMCA Youth and Family Services: Noah’s Anchorage Youth Crisis Shelter
» YMCA: Stuart C. Gildred Family Santa Ynez

Noozhawk business writer Alex Kacik can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

  • Ask
  • Vote
  • Investigate
  • Answer

Noozhawk Asks: What’s Your Question?

Welcome to Noozhawk Asks, a new feature in which you ask the questions, you help decide what Noozhawk investigates, and you work with us to find the answers.

Here’s how it works: You share your questions with us in the nearby box. In some cases, we may work with you to find the answers. In others, we may ask you to vote on your top choices to help us narrow the scope. And we’ll be regularly asking you for your feedback on a specific issue or topic.

We also expect to work together with the reader who asked the winning questions to find the answer together. Noozhawk’s objective is to come at questions from a place of curiosity and openness, and we believe a transparent collaboration is the key to achieve it.

The results of our investigation will be published here in this Noozhawk Asks section. Once or twice a month, we plan to do a review of what was asked and answered.

Thanks for asking!

Click here to get started >

Support Noozhawk Today

You are an important ally in our mission to deliver clear, objective, high-quality professional news reporting for Santa Barbara, Goleta and the rest of Santa Barbara County. Join the Hawks Club today to help keep Noozhawk soaring.

We offer four membership levels: $5 a month, $10 a month, $25 a month or $1 a week. Payments can be made through PayPal below, or click here for information on recurring credit-card payments.

Thank you for your vital support.

Reader Comments

Noozhawk is no longer accepting reader comments on our articles. Click here for the announcement. Readers are instead invited to submit letters to the editor by emailing them to [email protected]. Please provide your full name and community, as well as contact information for verification purposes only.

Daily Noozhawk

Subscribe to Noozhawk's A.M. Report, our free e-Bulletin sent out every day at 4:15 a.m. with Noozhawk's top stories, hand-picked by the editors.

Sign Up Now >

Meet Your Realtor Sponsored by Village Properties

Patricia Griffin
"I am very hands on and feel that each transaction is special and different. My clients goals are foremost in what I do to bring about a successful transaction."

Full Profile >