Pixel Tracker

Saturday, January 19 , 2019, 3:24 pm | Fair 69º

 
 
 
 

Montecito Bank & Trust Honors More Than 100 Local Nonprofits with ‘Community Dividends’ Awards

Over the past 15 years, locally based bank has donated $15 million to various community groups

President and CEO Janet Garufis addresses the crowd Monday at Montecito Bank & Trust celebrated its annual community dividends awards luncheon. The bank gave a total of $1 million to 184 nonprofits in Santa Barbara and Ventura counties. Click to view larger
President and CEO Janet Garufis addresses the crowd Monday at Montecito Bank & Trust celebrated its annual community dividends awards luncheon. The bank gave a total of $1 million to 184 nonprofits in Santa Barbara and Ventura counties. (Brooke Holland / Noozhawk photo)

Montecito Bank & Trust celebrated its annual Community Dividends Awards luncheon on Monday by giving away a total of $1 million to 184 nonprofits in Santa Barbara and Ventura counties.

Over the past 15 years, the bank has donated $15 million in community dividends.

This year, more than 300 applications were received, said bank President and CEO Janet Garufis.

The program awards dividends to organizations that serve in the arts, youth and education, and social welfare, as well as medical and health-care services sectors.

The gathering started with an hour-long reception at the La Pacifica Ballroom Coral Casino’ terrace at the Four Seasons Resort The Biltmore in Santa Barbara, where bank employees and area nonprofit representatives socialized before heading inside to dine.

In 2003, the community dividends awards were created by bank founder and Chairman Michael Towbes, 87, who died in his Montecito home in April.

“The reason we are here is because of him,” Garufis told Noozhawk. “This serves as a model for other companies that everyone can do something, and you just have to find what your something is, and do it.

"It’s our happiest day of the year. All of the organizations here are important to the vitality of the communities they serve.”

For a complete list of recipients, click here.

Attendees at Montecito Bank & Trust’s annual community dividends awards luncheon enjoy a summer-like day on the patio at the Coral Casino. Click to view larger
Attendees at Montecito Bank & Trust’s annual community dividends awards luncheon enjoy a summer-like day on the patio at the Coral Casino. (Brooke Holland / Noozhawk photo)

Santa Barbara Mayor Helene Schneider addressed the crowd, announcing Nov. 28 as “Michael Towbes Day” in Santa Barbara. The day coincides with global Giving Tuesday.

Towbes's started a successful real estate development career in Santa Barbara more than 60 years ago. 

In 1980, he founded The Towbes Group, in which he developed and managed more than 6,000 residential units for workforce and affordable housing, as well as 1.8 million square feet of commercial properties. Additionally, The Towbes Group donates more than $900,000 annually to more than 300 organizations.

“The idea is to celebrate him in a special way,” Schneider said.

An official proclamation will be made at 2 p.m. on Tuesday at City Hall, 735 Anacapa St.

At Monday’s event, State Sen. Hannah-Beth Jackson briefly spoke and presented her in-memoriam resolution to Towbes's family. The resolution includes Jackson’s statements she said in front of her California State Senate colleges.

The resolution honors Towbes's achievements and life.

“We are honoring the generosity, and recognizing a man who was always there to give,” Jackson said. “He strove for excellence.”

Montecito Bank & Trust has more than $1.3 billion in assets and operates 10 branch offices in Santa Barbara, Goleta, Solvang, Montecito, Carpinteria, Ventura, Camarillo and Westlake Village.

Noozhawk staff writer Brooke Holland 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.

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 using a credit card, Apple Pay or Google Pay, or click here for information on recurring credit-card payments and a mailing address for checks.

Thank you for your vital support.

Become a Noozhawk Supporter

First name
Last name
Email
Select your monthly membership
Or choose an annual membership
×

Payment Information

Membership Subscription

You are enrolling in . Thank you for joining the Hawks Club.

Payment Method

Pay by Credit Card:

Mastercard, Visa, American Express, Discover
One click only, please!

Pay with Apple Pay or Google Pay:

Noozhawk partners with Stripe to provide secure invoicing and payments processing.
You may cancel your membership at any time by sending an email to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

  • 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 >

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

Photo of Gary Welterlen and Carla Reeves
Gary Welterlen and Carla Reeves
"We both love this business. We strive to make life long relationships from each real estate transaction."

Full Profile >