How FirstBank Is Helping Marshall Fire Relief Efforts
FirstBank helps area residents, customers, and team members affected by the Middle Fork and Marshall fires in Boulder County.
During the morning of December 30, 2021, the Marshall Fire destroyed more than 1,000 homes throughout Boulder County, as well as 100 other businesses and structures. Within hours, it became Colorado’s most destructive fire, totaling an estimated $1.6 billion in damage.
FirstBank has been a part of Boulder County for decades. The people impacted are our colleagues, friends and family members. It’s where many of us grew up and continue to raise our children. So it was never a question whether we’d help. Like other organizations, we knew immediately we wanted to do everything possible to support this community’s healing.
For one, Boulder County is our home, and “banking for good” is our mantra. It reflects nearly 60 years of doing what’s right for our communities, customers, and employees, and it often means helping those who need it most. In other words, it’s not the first time we’ve come to the aid of those negatively impacted by disasters, economic downturns, social and financial inequities, and other life events. It won’t be the last either.
FirstBank has been a part of Boulder County for decades. The people impacted are our colleagues, friends, and family members.
While we recognize this is just a few steps in the right direction, here’s a glimpse of what FirstBank is doing to help area residents, customers and team members affected by the Middle Fork and Marshall fires:
Boulder County Wildfire Fund Contribution
FirstBank contributed $250,000 to provide financial assistance to individuals most impacted. The money is available to those whose homes were damaged, destroyed or who lost businesses, tools and wages due to the destruction of the fire. The fund also allocates resources for trauma counseling and other mental health support.
Volunteer Time Off Increase
FirstBank increased paid volunteer time off (VTO) for its employees in an effort to assist fire relief initiatives. This translates to 24 hours of paid VTO per employee, or over 60,000 hours companywide, so team members could continue supporting causes they’re passionate about, and help with disaster relief efforts.
Many of our customers were among those displaced. To help, we assembled care packages containing vouchers towards food, clothing and other essentials. So far, FirstBank has distributed over 70 packages.
Employee Relief Fund
Along with our corporate contribution to the Boulder County Wildfire Fund, we also created a relief fund, where FirstBank and its employees could contribute to help colleagues affected by the Marshall and Middle Fork Fires. Nearly $65,000 was raised and distributed among evacuated team members.
FirstBank Officers recently volunteered at the Boulder Valley Build Expo to educate impacted individuals on the rebuilding and construction loan process. In addition to coming up with unique lending solutions, FirstBank is currently working on a special financing program for Marshall Fire victims who need to rebuild their homes and were underinsured. While this is still in the early stages and we can’t provide many details yet, we’re hoping to supply information in the coming months.
FirstBank is continuing to evaluate local needs and are committed to helping our customers, colleagues, and neighbors heal. You see: “banking for good” is about manifesting something more powerful than words. It’s something we’ll continue to uphold during hard times like the Marshall Fire, because we’ve seen firsthand how it can help us come out stronger – as a company and as a community. To learn more about the Boulder County Wildfire Fund, or to get involved with the relief effort, visit: Boulder County Wildfire Fund.
Chad Mitchell is the President of FirstBank’s Boulder County Market and has been with the bank since 2001. As Market President, he oversees several FirstBank branches as well as all commercial, construction, and consumer lending across Boulder County.
With an extensive background in nonprofit work, Chad currently serves as the Board Chair of Brothers Redevelopment Inc.