Montecito Bank & Trust (MB&T) has received FDIC approval to open its 15th branch at 2125 S. Broadway, Santa Maria. A grand opening event is planned for January.

“We have been planning an expansion to northern Santa Barbara County for some time, but waiting for the right team to staff it,” said Janet Garufis, chairman/CEO of Montecito Bank & Trust. “Now that we have the right, local leadership, Santa Maria is the perfect place for us to expand our service and philanthropy.”

“We are excited about our expansion into the Santa Maria market,” said George Leis, president/COO at Montecito Bank and Trust. “At MB&T, we lead with people. Having local community members leading our Santa Maria banking team allows us to provide unique solutions to this vibrant and diverse community.

“I am pleased to introduce Barbara Luis, our branch manager, and Karly Davis, our VP of commercial banking. This community is the home to many of our associates and is a natural extension of the Montecito Bank & Trust banking experience.”

Luis, vice president/branch and community relations manager for Santa Maria, is a 40-year banking veteran focused on customer service excellence. Her career at financial institutions like Mechanics Bank, Union Bank, and Bank of America has given her the ability to manage an aray of client needs while keeping her community a priority.

Davis has lived in Santa Maria for nearly 20 years. She studied agricultural gusiness with a concentration in finance and appraisal at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. Beginning her career in the title insurance industry, Davis transitioned into banking in late 2007 and continues to enjoy helping meet the lending needs of her clients and her community.

In joining MB&T’s Commercial Lending Group she said she “looks forward to meeting the financial needs of the community and providing the world class experience that Montecito Bank & Trust is known for.”

The Santa Maria-based MB&T team will begin welcoming clients this December. In addition to Luis and Davis, Jen Napoli, MB&T’s SVP director of community banking, also calls Santa Maria home, with her family having owned and operated a successful local small business for decades.

“While Santa Maria’s growth has been tremendous, we still enjoy the benefits of a small town with personal service,” Napoli said. “Montecito Bank & Trust not only recognizes this but also understands the needs of an expanding community.

“Our entrance into the Santa Maria market will complement what the community has grown to expect — world class service. We are perfectly positioned to not only serve the community, but also to meet the increasingly complex financial needs that come with a growing community.”

Montecito Bank & Trust is the oldest and largest locally owned community bank in the Santa Barbara and Ventura counties. Founded in 1975, the bank operates 11 branch offices in Santa Barbara, Goleta, Solvang, Montecito, Carpinteria, Ventura, Camarillo and Westlake Village.