First Federal Bank Awards Jim Williams III with Second Annual Jeff Vereecke Community Impact Award
Defiance, OH – First Federal Bank awarded Jim Williams III, Executive Vice President, Northern Market Area Executive, the second annual Jeff Vereecke Community Impact Award. The award is designed to honor one individual who exemplifies the shared philosophy that the partnership between First Federal Bank, First Insurance Group, our customers, our employees and our communities makes us all better together./p>
Williams was selected as the recipient of the award from 10 nominees by First Federal Bank management and Karen Vereecke, widow of Jeff Vereecke, former Executive Vice President, Northern Market Area President for First Federal Bank who lost his battle to cancer in 2014.
Each nomination from Williams’ co-workers illustrated his positive, genuine leadership and compassion for others. “Jeff’s spirit lives on through his friends, like Jim, because of Jeff’s way of teaching others the important things in life. Jim now passes that same lesson in life on to others here at the bank and in the community,” explained Amy Daeger, Senior Vice President, Director of Retail Administration for First Federal Bank, in her nomination. His service to the Defiance community spans more than two decades through past and present leadership positions in many organizations including the Defiance Rotary Foundation, Defiance Chamber of Commerce, Economic Development, Defiance City Schools and his church. The youth of the community have benefited from his over 19 years of financial education provided through Junior Achievement. His passion to serve extends well beyond Defiance and touches the communities he serves through his role as Market Area Executive, particularly in Fort Wayne, Indiana, through organizations like Habitat for Humanity, the Rescue Mission, and YMCA. His desire to serve others took him to the Dominican Republic in both November 2016 and 2017 to build a home and distribute books, shoes, toys, and additional items collected prior to his travels to enhance the lives of children in that area.
As part of the award, Williams received $2,500 to donate to non-profit organizations of his choice. He chose to donate $1,250 to the Rescue Mission based in Fort Wayne, Indiana, and $1,250 to the Defiance Area YMCA expansion campaign.